Tuesday, 1 April 2014

NGO: Israel pushes tenders for 700 more illegal East Jerusalem homes


JERUSALEM (AFP) -- Israel on Tuesday pushed tenders for more than 700 homes in an illegal settlement in annexed East Jerusalem, as Washington made intensive efforts to salvage a crisis-hit peace process, an Israeli NGO said.

"The ministry of housing is trying to forcefully undermine the peace process ... and (US Secretary of State) John Kerry's efforts to promote it," charged Peace Now's Hagit Ofran, confirming the tenders were for 708 homes in the Gilo settlement in East Jerusalem.

Israel has begun work on over 10,500 housing units in illegal settlements while simultaneously demolishing 146 Palestinian homes since peace talks began in July. more

Kerem Shalom crossing opens for Gaza exports to Ukraine


GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Israeli authorities opened the Kerem Shalom crossing with the Gaza Strip on Tuesday to allow a single truckload of wooden furniture to be exported to Ukraine, a Palestinian official said.

Raed Fattouh told Ma'an that 280 truckloads of humanitarian aid and commercial and agricultural goods were also allowed to enter Gaza.

He said eight truckloads of cement, 23 loads of concrete aggregates, and two loads of iron bars for construction would enter the Strip for UN-funded projects.

Additionally, fuel was to be delivered to Gaza's sole power plant. Domestic-use gas was also allowed to enter the besieged coastal enclave. more