Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Ceasefire falls apart in final hours - then extended by 5 days say reports


Three rockets from Gaza reportedly hit the southern Israeli city of Ashkelon on Wednesday night as the midnight end of a three-day ceasefire loomed with no breakthrough in negotiations in Cairo in sight.

Soon after the three rockets hit Israel, an explosion was heard in Gaza. Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri, however, denied that the group had fired any rockets.

Israeli Channel 2 TV station earlier reported an extension of the ceasefire between Israel and Gaza militants was accepted by the Israeli cabinet on Wednesday evening, after being proposed by Egypt earlier in the day.

Hamas has accused Israel of using the short-term extensions of the ceasefire as a stalling tactic as it refuses to consider any of the Palestinian demands for peace. more

Video: Israeli soldiers celebrate shooting an 18-year-old Palestinian


On August 9th in Hebron, Israeli soldiers celebrated shooting an 18-year-old Palestinian youth in the leg with live ammunition.
The Canadian volunteer, Vern, who witnessed the soldier firing, stated, “After the soldiers left the roof, I went to confront them about why they had fired. One of them said to me that he was the one who fired and that he was proud of his actions. He then asked me to take his picture.”

The hospital released a document to the International Solidarity Movement (ISM) stating that the injury of the young man was a gunshot wound to the right calf, and that the injury required surgery under general anaesthetic. more

Video: Israeli soldiers assault Palestinian, seize tractor


Israeli soldiers assaulted a young Palestinian, on Tuesday, in an area east of Yatta, south of the Hebron District, upon which they seized his tractor.

Rateb Jubour, Coordinator of the Anti-settlement Committee in Hebron, said the soldiers violentyl beat one Mohammad Shaabin, 21 years of age, before seizing his tractor and an attached water tanker.

Mohammad sustained bruises throughout his body and was taken to a hospital for treatment. more

Israeli forces redeploy near Gaza border as ceasefire end looms


As negotiations between the Palestinian and Israeli delegations faltered on Wednesday during a 72-hour ceasefire, Israeli forces began redeploying near the Gaza border in advance of the midnight deadline.

Earlier, Egypt called for a three-day renewal in order to press for more time to reach a long-term agreement, even as Israel refused to accede to Palestinian demands for an end to the eight-year Israeli siege on Gaza.

A Palestinian official told Ma'an that Egypt had also suggested a new ceasefire proposal that would include easing the Israeli siege on Gaza as well as restrictions caused by Egypt's closure of the Rafah crossing, a key demand of the Palestinian leadership.

Despite the negotiations, the Israeli army was reportedly deploying forces at the border with the Gaza Strip and authorities on Wednesday afternoon said they were considering calling up more reservists.

The military wing of Hamas, the al-Qassam Brigades, said they would to give a televised speech Wednesday evening to update the public on negotiations and the preparations being made by Palestinian resistance forces.

The move comes as negotiations for peace have reached an impasse amid a five-week Israeli assault on Gaza that has left nearly 2,000 Palestinians dead and around 10,000 injured. more

5 killed as unexploded Israeli missile blows up in northern Gaza


GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- At least five people were killed and another six were critically injured after an unexploded Israeli missile blew up in Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip, witnesses and a health ministry spokesman said.

Ashraf al-Qidra identified three of the dead as Bilal Muhammad al-Sultan, 27, Taysir Ali al-Hum, 40, and Hazem Ahmad Abu Murad, 38.

Among the dead are a foreign reporter for The Associated Press and a local journalist, a Ma'an reporter said.

The bodies and the injured were taken to Kamal Adwan hospital, al-Qidra added.

Palestinian photojournalist Hatem Moussa was also injured in the explosion. more

Israeli forces arrest 57 Palestinians in East Jerusalem


JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces launched widespread arrest raids across East Jerusalem overnight, detaining 57 Palestinians, locals and a police spokesman said Wednesday.

Residents told Ma'an that Israeli police stormed the Silwan, al-Isawiya, at-Tur, Suwwana, and Shufat neighborhoods of Jerusalem, in addition to the Old City, and arrested dozens of young Palestinian men and teenagers.

Police officers broke into homes without warning, damaging property and ransacking rooms before making arrests, locals said.

Clashes broke out during raids in at-Tur and al-Isawiya, with Palestinians throwing stones and Israeli forces firing rubber-coated bullets, tear gas, and stun grenades at protesters.

Medics for the Union of Arab Paramedics treated 26 young men who were hit by rubber-coated bullets, witnesses said.

Israeli police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told Ma'an 57 Palestinians had been arrested overnight for recent "stone-throwing incidents." more