Monday, 8 September 2014

Jerusalem clashes after teen's funeral

Israeli forces attacked the funeral procession of slain Jerusalem teenager Abd al-Majid Sinokrot after mourners marched from his hometown of Wadi Joz to the al-Aqsa mosque on Monday.

Mourners raised Palestinian flags and after they left the mosque, Israeli forces fired stun grenades, tear gas, and rubber-coated steel bullets toward them near al-Sahira gate.

Clashes also broke out along Salah al-Din street in Jerusalem.

There were no immediate reports of injury.

The clashes shut down traffic throughout much of occupied East Jerusalem. more

WHO requests $40 Million for Gaza hospitals

“The World Health Organization (WHO) appeals for US $40 million for medicines and medical supplies for the Ministry of Health in Gaza has achieved a response rate of 45%, considering both medical supplies delivered and those in the pipeline, as reported by the Ministry of Health up to September 3,” the World Health Organization stated in a Sunday press release.

(WAFA) “In addition, the UN Gaza Appeal which was launched during the emergency and was updated following the ceasefire, requests US$ 23.5 million for health sector intervention to be implemented by UN agencies, including US$ 8.1 million for WHO, and by non-governmental organizations to support health services in Gaza in the recovery period,” the statement added. more

45 children critically injured in Gaza to be treated in Germany

Forty-five children severely injured in Israel's seven-week offensive on Gaza will be transferred to Germany on Monday to receive medical treatment, a Palestinian MP said.

Ashraf Jumaa said 45 children, some of whom underwent amputations in Gaza hospitals, will be treated abroad in Germany.

The trip was organized and paid for by the Union of Palestinian Doctors and Pharmacists in Germany after a visit to the besieged enclave on Sunday.

The union will also reportedly take custody of 300 children orphaned during the Israeli offensive. more

Israel's Lieberman doubts Gaza truce can last

JERUSALEM (AFP) -- Hardline Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said on Sunday he doubted the current Gaza ceasefire would hold over the long term and that disarming Palestinian factions was not feasible anytime soon.

After briefing Israeli journalists he was quoted across the local media as saying that he thought the chances of Egypt-mediated talks achieving their goal of a durable Gaza truce were slim.

"Any ceasefire, in my opinion, will be limited in time," Lieberman said.

Disarming the coastal strip was not on the immediate horizon, he said, but it should be kept in the forefront of international public opinion.

"Demilitarization is not realistic at the moment," he was quoted as saying. more

Hamdallah: PA faces boycott threats over Hamas wages

RAMALLAH (AFP) -- The international community has threatened to boycott the Palestinian leadership if it pays the salaries of former Hamas employees in Gaza, Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah told AFP on Sunday.

In an exclusive interview, Hamdallah said he had been warned he would face problems if he visited the Gaza Strip without first regulating the problem of the salaries.

Hamdallah, who heads the Palestinian government of national consensus which took office on June 2, said the problem of the wages had turned into the main stumbling block to an intra-Palestinian reconciliation deal.

Since signing the agreement in April, Hamas has demanded the new government take responsibility for paying its 45,000 employees, some 27,000 of which are civil servants, he said. The rest are understood to be members of the Hamas police and security forces.

Before the Hamas government stepped down in June, it had been unable to pay their wages for months due to a biting economic crisis.

But Hamdallah said his government had been warned against channeling any money to anyone employed by Hamas, which is blacklisted by the US and Europe as a terror organisation.

"The government and the banks operating in the Palestinian territories were warned that if they make these payments to former Hamas government employees in Gaza then the government and the people will be boycotted," he said.

"If this happens, the Palestinian banking system will face a huge problem that will threaten the Palestinian situation in general," he told AFP.

The Palestinians are heavily dependent on international aid with a boycott likely to have a devastating financial impact on its financial viability.

Hamas' insistence on including the employees on the payroll of the new administration was "the main problem preventing the government from working in the Gaza Strip," Hamdallah said.

His remarks came a day after president Mahmoud Abbas lashed out at Hamas, blaming it for effectively running a parallel administration and preventing the consensus government from operating in Gaza.

In response to the Hamdallah's comments, Hamas on Sunday called on him to visit the Gaza Strip and take the responsibility his position requires.

"Hamdallah's refusal to come to Gaza because of alleged threats is an unacceptable position," Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said in a statement.

"He is the Minister of Interior, and all the police are under his command to provide his people with security," Abu Zuhri said.

"Hamas invites him to come to Gaza, take responsibility for its people, and stop making excuses." more