Monday, 30 November 2015

Pirouettes and plenty of pink at Gaza's only ballet school

The group of girls, ponytailed and dressed in pink, stretched their arms out to the sides and pivoted onto their toes, trying desperately to hold still. Eagle-eyed, the instructor surveyed Gaza's latest crop of would-be ballerinas.

Fifty girls aged five to eight are now enrolled in the ballet school at the Al-Qattan Center for Children in Gaza, making it one of the most popular classes the arts institute runs, under the watchful eye of a Ukrainian teacher.

Amid the chaos and destruction that has shattered Gaza so often over the past five years, with repeated wars between Israel and Hamas, the school is a haven of calm and order, one many parents are eager for their children to enjoy.

"The ballet project was a dream for many families," said Heyam Al-Hayek, the head of Qattan's cultural activities. "They had been asking for ballet courses but we couldn't find trainers. It was difficult to bring an instructor from abroad."

The dream began to take shape when they found Tamara, a Ukrainian married to a Palestinian and living in Gaza, who had studied dance and was qualified to teach. She asked not to give her family name.

They started a pilot programme in the summer, not sure how many parents would sign up given that Gaza is a conservative society and ballet is hardly a common pastime. Before they knew it, 50 children, all girls, were registered. There is now a waiting list that runs into the hundreds. more

Soldiers kill Palestinian teen in Jerusalem

Israeli soldiers fatally shot, on Sunday at night, a Palestinian teen in Ein al-Louza neighborhood, in Silwan town, south of the Al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied Jerusalem.

Medical sources said the slain Palestinian has been identified as Ayman Sameeh al-Abbassi, 17 years of age, and that he was shot with a live round in his chest.

Clashes took place in different parts of the town, including Ras al-Amoud and Ein al-Louza, while the soldiers fired rounds of live ammunition, rubber-coated steel bullets and gas bombs. Many Palestinians suffered the effects of tear gas inhalation.

The soldiers also invaded Ein al-Louza Specialized Medical Center, and detained the medical staff in addition to inspecting the ID cards of many residents in the center.

They attempted to snatch the body of the slain Palestinian from the center, but the residents prevented them, and took him to his family home.

The army also invaded the residential building of Sami Rajabi, and searched several apartments, in addition to surrounding the al-Makassed and Augusta Victoria Hospitals, before searching all cars entering or leaving them. more

2 Israelis convicted for 2014 killing of Muhammad Abu Khdeir

Israel's Jerusalem District Court on Monday convicted two Israelis for the murder of Palestinian teenager Muhammad Abu Khdeir last summer, with a third suspect who admitted to the killing escaping conviction on the grounds of his mental health.

The conviction of Yosef Ben David, the alleged ringleader of the gang that kidnapped, assaulted, and burned Muhammad, 16, to death, was suspended to allow for a last minute psychiatric evaluation, Israeli news site Haaretz reported.

The 31-year-old suspect's lawyer submitted an evaluation last week declaring that he was not responsible for his actions at the time of the murder.

The two Israeli youths found guilty will be sentenced on Jan. 13, according to the AFP news agency, while another hearing for Ben David was set for Dec. 20.

All three suspects confessed to the murder during questioning by Israeli police, admitting to beating the Palestinian teenager unconscious before pouring flammable liquid on him and burning him alive.

The suspects said it was revenge for the kidnapping and killing of three Israeli teenagers. more

Saturday, 28 November 2015

Video: Israel using Dutch dogs to terrorize Palestinians

This video shows Israeli forces using a dog to attack and injure 20-year-old Ahmad Shteiwi as he participated in an anti-occupation protest in the West Bank village of Kufr Qaddoum, near Nablus, in March 2012.

It is one of numerous instances of Israeli forces setting dogs on unarmed Palestinian civilians, including children – a violent tactic reminiscent of US police practices against Black citizens.

The Palestinian human rights group Al-Haq and Dutch lawmakers are calling on the Netherlands to immediately halt the annual export of dozens of police and military dogs to Israel.

Such dogs “are intentionally used by Israeli occupying forces to terrorize and bite Palestinian civilians, especially during protests and night house raids,” Al-Haq director Shawan Jabarin wrote to Dutch foreign minister Bert Koenders and trade minister Lilianne Ploumen earlier this month. more

Palestinian fishermen forced to return to shore after Israeli gunfire

Israeli naval forces Saturday opened fire on Palestinian fishermen off the coast of Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip, according to local fishermen.

The fishermen told Ma’an that all fishing boats in the area were forced to return to the shore due to the gunfire. No casualties have been reported.

An Israeli army spokesperson did not have immediate information on the incident.

Two fishermen sustained moderate injuries after being targeted and shot in the same area earlier this month.

Israeli forces often say that Palestinian fishermen “deviate from the designated fishing zone” allotted by Israel to the workers, posing a “security threat.” more

Friday, 27 November 2015

Palestinian rams Israeli soldiers with car before being shot dead

A Palestinian rammed his car into Israeli soldiers at a bus station in the occupied West Bank on Friday before being shot dead, police said.

“A Palestinian car hit two Israelis standing by a bus station (near Kfar Adumim). The terrorist was neutralised,” police said.

Israeli military warns violence could go on for months and risks getting worse

They later confirmed the suspect had died and the army said the two Israelis were soldiers.

Israel’s Magen David Adom emergency medical service said the two soldiers were taken to hospital in Jerusalem with light to moderate wounds.

Kfar Adumim is an Israeli settlement northeast of Jerusalem.

Friday’s incident raises the number of Palestinians killed since 1 October to 98, including an Israeli Arab. more

3rd Palestinian shot, killed by Israeli forces in al-Arrub camp

A 19-year-old Palestinian was shot and killed in al-Arrub refugee camp in northern Hebron on Thursday during clashes, medics told Ma'an, the 3rd Palestinian to be killed during the day.

Red Crescent officials said that Khalid Mahmoud al-Jawabreh, 19, was shot twice in the stomach by Israeli soldiers and later died from his injuries in the al-Ahli hospital in Hebron.

The teenager was shot during clashes in the camp between youths and armed Israeli military forces.

An Israeli army spokesperson said "a Palestinian with a lit Molotov cocktail in hand attempted to hit vehicles off route 60 in the area of al-Arrub, forces on site responded to the immediate threat, shooting .22 calibre rounds, thwarting the attack."

The main entrance to al-Arrub camp has been entirely closed for the past few days, with soldiers deployed at other entrances and in surrounding areas. more

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Palestinian killed at Nablus checkpoint after alleged attack

Israeli forces on Thursday shot and killed a Palestinian at the Zaatara (Tappuah) military checkpoint south of Nablus after he reportedly attempted to stab an Israeli soldier, Israeli police said.

Israeli police spokesperson Luba al-Samri said in a statement that a taxi stopped suddenly at the checkpoint and a passenger exited the vehicle, attempting to stab an Israeli soldier.

Israeli forces on site shot the man several times before he was pronounced dead, and began chasing the taxi that brought the man to the checkpoint, al-Samri said.

Earlier Thursday, a 21-year-old Palestinian, Yahya Yusri Taha, was killed by Israeli soldiers when clashes broke out during a search and arrest raid in the town of Qatanna.

Locals told Ma'an that Taha was shot in the head and left on the ground bleeding for more than an hour-and-a-half while Israeli soldiers denied Palestinian ambulances access to the young man to administer medical treatment.

Thursday’s incident at Zaatara marks the third Palestinian to be shot dead at checkpoints around Nablus this week. more

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Palestinian shot after Israeli stabbed in attack near Hebron

A Palestinian was shot and injured on Wednesday at the al-Fawwar junction south of the occupied West Bank city of Hebron after reportedly stabbing an Israeli, the Israeli army said.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that the army received “initial reports that a stabbing occurred” at the junction, leaving one Israeli wounded. Israel's army said the Palestinian suspect had been shot on scene and was detained.

He was identified to Ma'an as Muhammad Ismail Shubaki, 19, a student at the Palestine Technical College near al-Arrub refugee camp.

The Palestinian Ministry of Health told Ma’an that the Palestinian shot on scene was evacuated to Hadassah hospital in Jerusalem in critical condition.

Israeli emergency service Magen David Adom said the Israeli, 20, was left in severe condition and transferred to Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem Six Palestinians and two Israelis have been killed during reported attacks since Sunday.

Four of those killed were Palestinians that were 16 years of age.


Israeli forces deploy in Hebron after sniper fires on Israeli car

Israeli forces deployed across Hebron’s Old City Wednesday after a Palestinian reportedly opened fire at an Israeli vehicle, locals told Ma’an.

A Palestinian sniper opened fire at the vehicle of an Israeli settler parked near the Ibrahimi Mosque, causing damage to the car, according to Israeli media reports. No injuries were reported.

Locals told a Ma’an reporter in the area that Israeli forces were deployed in search of the suspect.

Israeli forces fired tear gas when clashes erupted between Israeli soldiers and Palestinian students en route to school at the time, locals said.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that the army received reports of gunshots in an area nearby Hebron, shortly before an Israeli reported damage to his vehicle outside of the Ibrahimi Mosque, adding that bullets were found inside the car. more

Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Palestinian shot, injured after alleged car attack injures 4 Israelis

A Palestinian man was shot and wounded after he allegedly rammed his car into a group of Israeli security personnel, injuring four, at Tappuah junction in the northern West Bank district of Nablus on Tuesday morning, Israeli police said.

Israeli police spokesperson Micky Rosenfeld said that Israeli police shot and wounded the Palestinian following what he described as a "terrorist attack." He said that the area had been closed off.

A spokesperson for Beilinson Hospital said that four Israelis had been taken there for medical treatment, one with moderate injuries and three with light injuries.

The Palestinian was also evacuated for medical treatment, and his condition was not clear.

Monday was another violent day in the occupied Palestinian territory and Israel, with three Palestinians shot dead after alleged attacks on Israel, the third of which resulted in an Israeli death.

All three Palestinian fatalities on Monday were 16 years old. more

Monday, 23 November 2015

Palestinian woman shot dead after 'stab attack' near Jerusalem market

Israeli forces shot two Palestinian women, killing one and wounding the other, after they allegedly stabbed and injured two Israelis near the Mahane Yehuda market on Jaffa Street in Jerusalem on Monday morning, Israeli police said.

Israeli police spokesperson Micky Rosenfeld said that the two Palestinian women carried out a "knife attack" near the Mahane Yehuda market, with both suspects shot at the scene.

One of the women reportedly died soon after, while the other was moderately wounded. more

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Palestinian shot dead after stabbing Israeli to death near Gush Etzion

A Palestinian man was shot and killed by Israeli forces after he stabbed to death a 21-year-old Israeli woman near the illegal Israeli settlement bloc of Gush Etzion, Israeli sources said.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma'an that after the Palestinian stabbed the woman at the Gush Etzion junction, "forces on site responded to the imminent threat and shot the attacker, resulting in his death."

The Israeli victim, identified as 21-year-old Hadar Buchrus, was evacuated to Shaare Zedek hospital in Jerusalem where she was pronounced dead. A spokesperson for the hospital said: "She was brought to the hospital almost dead."

The Palestinian attacker was identified as 34-year-old Issa Thawabta from Beit Fajjar in Bethlehem district, just south of Gush Etzion.

A Ma'an reporter who was in the area during the attack said that he witnessed dozens of Israeli soldiers rushing to the hitchhiking station at the Gush Etzion junction, firing gunshots.

The soldiers then shut down the main bypass road known as Route 60. more

Saturday, 21 November 2015

Nearly 400 Palestinian children held in Israeli jails

A prisoners' rights group said Friday that nearly 400 Palestinian children between the ages of 11 and 17 are currently being held in Israeli jails.

The Palestinian Prisoners' Society said in a statement that 11 of those detained were being held without charge or trial under administration detention orders.

The group added that several children detained since the start of last month were hit with live Israeli fire while being detained.

Some 700 children have been detained since the beginning of October -- mainly in the Hebron and Jerusalem districts -- many of whom were released under specific conditions including bail or house arrest, the society said. more

Friday, 20 November 2015

87 Palestinians shot by Israeli forces in West Bank, Gaza clashes

At least 87 Palestinians were shot and injured by Israeli forces during clashes in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip on Friday, medics told Ma'an.

The Red Crescent said 22 Palestinians were shot with live fire in West Bank clashes, with 12 shot in the lower extremities in Hebron and eight in al-Bireh. A further 38 Palestinians were shot with rubber-coated steel bullets while 210 were treated for tear gas inhalation.

Clashes broke out in the Ras al-Jura area of northern Hebron, with medics treating the injured in the street.

Israeli soldiers used three Palestinian cars as cover from Palestinian youths throwing rocks while the passengers were still in their vehicles, witnesses said. The passengers were only allowed to leave their cars after several hours.

In Gaza, 26 Palestinians were shot with live fire as clashes broke out in the central and eastern Gaza Strip. more

91 Palestinians including 18 children killed by Israel since 1st October

The Palestinian Health Ministry has reported that the number of Palestinians killed by Israeli fire since October 1 has reached 91, including 18 children and four women. More than 10,000 Palestinians were injured, including at least 1458 who were shot with live army fire, and 1070 shot with rubber-coated steel bullets.

This report came after Shadi Zohdi Arafa, 28 years of age, was killed by Israeli soldiers near the Gush Etzion Israeli colony, south of Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank.

Another Palestinian, identified as Mahmoud Sa’id ‘Oleyyan, 22, died of serious injuries he suffered ten days ago, after Israeli soldiers invaded the Palestinian city of al-Biereh.

The Ministry said that 72 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire in the West Bank since October 1, 18 in the besieged Gaza Strip, and one in the Negev. One of the women who were killed, identified as Nour Rasmie Hassan, age 30, died along with her 2-year old child in an Israeli air strike.

It added that 1458 Palestinians were shot by live Israeli army fire, 1019 of them in the West Bank, and 1070 were shot with rubber-coated steel bullets, 954 of them in the West Bank. An additional 1200 were injured and received treatment by local medics in different parts of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. more

Thursday, 19 November 2015

2 Israelis, 1 Palestinian killed in Gush Etzion shooting attack

Two Israelis and a Palestinian were killed and at least seven injured in a shooting attack in the Gush Etzion settlement bloc on Thursday, hours after two Israelis were killed in a stabbing attack in Tel Aviv, Israeli police said.

A Palestinian suspect reportedly opened fire from a vehicle, injuring at least 10 Israelis, including two seriously, Israeli police said.

Police later reported that two Israelis had died and a Palestinian bystander was also killed.

Israeli media said that after the initial shooting the suspect continued driving and rammed into another vehicle, opening fire again before being shot.

Initial reports said the suspect was killed at the scene, with later reports confirming two suspects were arrested by Israeli forces.

A spokesperson from the Israeli emergency services, Magen David Adom, said medics were responding at the scene of the "shooting incident," without providing further details.

Just hours before the incident, two Israelis were killed and two others injured in a stabbing attack in southern Tel Aviv. more

2 Israelis killed, 2 injured in Tel Aviv stabbing attack

Two Israelis were killed and two injured Thursday in a stabbing attack in southern Tel Aviv, according to Israeli police and medics.

Israeli police spokesperson Luba al-Samri said that a stabbing attack took place inside of the Panorama building on Ben Tsavi street in the city, leaving a 20-year-old Israeli dead at the scene.

An Israeli who was critically injured died shortly after in Tel Aviv’s Ichelov hospital, al-Samri said.

Two others were moderately wounded in the attack, according to Israeli emergency services Magen David Adom.

Israeli police said the suspect attempted to enter a synagogue inside the building but was stopped by civilians.

Two different suspects are believed to have stabbed the Israelis, one of whom was a Palestinian from Dura who was captured by Israeli civilians, the police spokesperson said. more

Israeli forces raid Bethlehem-area refugee camp, injure 2

Israeli forces on Thursday shot and injured two young Palestinian men in Duheisha refugee camp south of Bethlehem during a dawn arrest raid, locals said.

Locals told Ma’an that large numbers of Israeli soldiers stormed the southern West Bank camp ransacking more than 20 homes before detaining 22-year-old Muhammad Nidal Abu Akar.

In response to the incursion, young men and teenagers living in the camp hurled stones and improvised explosive devices at the soldiers who deployed heavily in the streets and on rooftops of buildings.

Israeli soldiers showered the camp and the main street leading to Bethlehem with tear gas and fired live ammunition at the protesters, hitting two in the feet, according to locals.

Witnesses told Ma’an that Israeli soldiers also fired gunshots at security guards of an UNRWA-affiliated school near the main road.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that Israeli forces entered the camp to make an arrest when dozens of residents attacked the soldiers with rocks and firebombs. more

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Israeli forces hit Hamas infrastructure in Gaza Strip

Israeli forces early Wednesday launched airstrikes in the Gaza Strip damaging infrastructure belonging to Hamas' military wing, locals said. Local sources told Ma’an that the strikes targeted two locations in western Gaza City used for training by Hamas’ military wing, al-Qassam Brigades, causing material damages to nearby homes.

In the central Gaza Strip, Israeli forces hit an area known as “Brigade 13” used by the militant group, locals said, adding that no injuries were reported.

The strikes came after the Israeli army said a rocket fired from the besieged strip exploded near the border fence.

The Israeli air force “targeted two Hamas sites in the Northern and Central Gaza Strip,” the army confirmed, adding that Israel holds Hamas responsible for “any act of terror” from the strip.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for the rocket launched from the strip Tuesday, and no injuries or damages were reported.

Sporadic rocket fire has come from the Gaza Strip this year and has been met with retaliatory Israeli attacks, with the military making at least 49 incursions into the enclave since the start of 2015, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

Last month an Israeli airstrike killed a two-year-old Palestinian and her pregnant mother inside their home. more

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Israeli prime minister pushes for control of Golan after oil discovery

The Israeli Prime Minister's visit to Washington last week included a meeting with President Obama, in which the two discussed the status of the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.

Israel invaded and occupied the Syrian territory known as the 'Golan Heights' in 1967, and has maintained a military and civilian presence there ever since. But the Israeli claim on the territory has never been recognized by the international community.

Now, according to some analysts, the Israeli government has a new reason to secure their illegal annexation of the Syrian land: oil.

Last month Afek, an Israeli subsidiary of the U-S-based Genie Energy, announced the discovery of huge reserves of oil in the region.

The company’s chief geologist in Israel, Yuval Bartov, said the reserves could potentially hold billions of barrels of oil.

Afek’s license to do exploratory drilling was renewed by the Israeli government for two years in October, shortly after the finding of the oil reserves.

But the land on which the oil is located is actually Syrian territory. more

Monday, 16 November 2015

Israeli forces shoot, injure 2 Palestinian fishermen off Gaza coast

Israeli forces shot and injured two Palestinian fishermen off the coast of the Gaza Strip on Monday, witnesses said.

Locals said the fishermen sustained moderate injuries after being targeted off the coast near Beit Lahiya in northern Gaza by Israeli naval forces.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma'an that three fishing boats deviated from the designated fishing area and Israeli forces fired warning shots in the air, with no reports of injuries. Israeli forces have repeatedly opened fire on Palestinian fishermen and farmers since the ceasefire agreement signed Aug. 26, 2014 that ended a devastating 50-day Israeli military offensive against the Gaza Strip. more

Israeli forces kill 2 Palestinians in Qalandiya refugee camp

Israeli forces killed two Palestinians in the Qalandiya refugee camp at dawn on Monday during a raid to demolish the home of an alleged Palestinian attacker, witnesses said.

Israeli soldiers shot and killed Laith Assad Manasra, 21, and Ahmad Abu al-Aish, 28, as clashes broke out following a raid involving hundreds of Israeli forces in the densely populated refugee camp.

Dozens of other Palestinians were injured in the clashes, with Yusuf Abu Latifa, 17, critically wounded. Witnesses said Israeli forces stopped an ambulance he was being carried in and detained him while he was en route to hospital.

Israeli soldiers forced residents to evacuate their homes in the camp before demolishing the top floor of an apartment belonging to Muhammad Abu Shahin.

Witnesses told Ma'an that Israeli forces fired tear gas canisters at Palestinian ambulances attempting to reach those wounded in the raid.

Israeli forces entered the camp from all sides after closing off nearby roads and the Qalandiya military checkpoint.

An Israeli army spokesperson said that Israeli forces entered the camp in order to demolish the home of Muhammad Abu Shahin, a suspect in the killing of an Israeli settler on June 19 near the settlement of Dolev northwest of Ramallah. more

Saturday, 14 November 2015

Israel demolishes 4 West Bank homes of Palestinians accused of attacks

Israeli authorities overnight Friday demolished four homes belonging to the families of Palestinians accused of carrying out deadly attacks on Israeli settlers, the Israeli army said.

In the occupied West Bank city of Nablus, the homes of Yahia Haj Hamed, Samir Zahir Kusa, and Kerem Lutfi Razek were destroyed, the army said in a statement.

The three were detained on Oct. 5 along with two others after Israel’s Shin Bet identified them as responsible for killing two Israeli settlers on Oct. 1.

In the Ramallah-area town of Silwad, the Israeli army reported that forces demolished the residence of Maad Hamad, who they said killed an Israeli settler on June 29.

The demolitions took place under the order of Israel’s defense minister Moshe Yaalon and are a part of a series of punitive measures being carried out by the Israeli government to “deter” future attacks. more

Friday, 13 November 2015

Palestinian dies from injuries after being shot by Israeli soldiers

A 22-year-old Palestinian died on Friday from wounds sustained a day earlier after being shot by Israeli soldiers in the Hebron district during clashes.

Palestinian security officials identified the man as Issa al-Shalaldah, 22. The Ministry of Health told Ma'an that a bullet shattered his spleen, large intestine, lung, and diaphragm during clashes at the Beit Einun junction in Sair on Thursday following the funeral of Abdullah Shalaldah, 28.

Issa died in the al-Ahli hospital on Friday.

Abdullah Shalaldah, a relative of Issa, was shot dead in the same hospital at dawn Thursday after undercover Israeli forces raided the facility.

Shalaldah, 28, was shot at least three times in the head and upper body while visiting his cousin 20-year-old Azzam Azmi Shalaldah, who was a patient at the hospital.

“The fact that Abdullah Shalaldah was shot in the head and upper body suggests this was an extrajudicial execution, adding to a disturbing pattern of similar recent incidents by Israeli forces in the West Bank which warrant urgent investigation,” said Philip Luther, Director of the Middle East and North Africa Programme at Amnesty International. more

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Israel set to ban boycotters

As the European Union approved a guidelines to mark Israeli settlement goods, the Knesset rushed to approve a preliminary reading of a bill to ban individuals who call for a boycott of Israel.

Israeli Occupation Authorities following move to label settlement goods, called the EU as antisemitic and racist who “should be ashamed.

The Israeli prime minister, Netanyahu also said that Israel is “unwilling to accept the fact that the EU labels the side being attacked by terror.”

The move was also condemned by the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

According to +972 magazine, on Wednesday the Knesset approved the first reading of a bill that would forbid entry into Israel of anyone who calls for BDS.

As the entry to Palestine is also controlled by the Israeli occupation authorities, boycotters, if banned, will not be able to enter the occupied Palestinian territory. more

Israeli soldiers open fire on Palestinian farmers in Gaza

Israeli soldiers, stationed across the border fence, fired dozens of rounds of live ammunition on Palestinian farmers, working in their lands close to the border fence, east of Deir al-Balah, in central Gaza.

Eyewitnesses said the soldiers, some on military towers and others in armored vehicles, fired dozens of live rounds, and smoke bombs, at the farmers in their own lands, causing damage but no injuries.

The farmers left their lands fearing additional Israeli military escalation. more

Undercover Israeli forces shoot dead Palestinian in Hebron hospital

Undercover Israeli forces on Thursday shot dead a Palestinian during a hospital raid in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron, witnesses and hospital staff said.

Abdullah Azzam Shalaldah, 28, was shot several times by forces who raided the surgery unit of al-Ahli hospital in order to detain his cousin, Azzam Ezzat Shalaldah, 20, who was shot by an Israeli settler last month, hospital staff told Ma’an.

Abdullah and another relative were in the hospital visiting Azzam when around 20 undercover Israeli soldiers entered the hospital at 3:00 a.m., witnesses said.

The forces tied up the relative while Abdullah, who was in the bathroom at the time, entered the room and was shot dead on scene.

The undercover forces then retreated from the hospital with Azzam, taking him into custody, witnesses added.

An Israeli army spokesperson was unable to comment on the presence of undercover forces during the raid, while Israeli media reported that the forces arrived in two large vans with someone pretending to be pregnant.

The army spokesperson told Ma’an that a combined force of Israeli army and police members had entered the hospital in order to detain Azzam, when an “additional suspect attacked the forces.” The forces responded with live fire, killing the man, the spokesperson confirmed.


Wednesday, 11 November 2015

13 injured by live fire as clashes break out in Qalandiya refugee camp

RAMALLAH (Ma’an) -- Israeli forces on Wednesday raided Qalandiya refugee camp near the occupied West Bank city of Ramallah, injuring 13 Palestinians with live fire, residents and medics said. Residents told Ma'an that 16-year-old camp resident Faris Abu al-Esh was shot before being detained and his condition is not known.

Israeli forces opened fire when clashes broke out during the raid with Palestinian residents who threw stones at the forces.

The Palestinian Ministry of Health told Ma’an that the injured were transferred to the Palestinian Medical Complex in Ramallah.

All Palestinians admitted were shot in their lower extremities during the clashes, medics said. One resident sustained a serious injury and the remaining 11 were reported to be in stable condition.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that Israeli forces entered the camp in the early morning during “routine activity,” in order to “arrest suspects involved in illegal activity.”

The spokesperson said that “rioters attacked the forces, throwing rocks and Molotov cocktails” when Israeli forces used “riot dispersal means,” opening fire towards the “main instigators.”

The spokesperson confirmed several hits but was unable to specify the number of Palestinians arrested during the raid.


Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Palestinian killed, one wounded after alleged stabbing attempts

Israeli forces shot dead one Palestinian and wounded another after they allegedly carried out separate stabbing attempts in the occupied West Bank, Israeli sources said.

One of the Palestinians was shot dead after he allegedly attempted to stab an Israeli border guard at the Container checkpoint east of Jerusalem near Abu Dis.

Israeli police said that Israeli forces opened fire on the Palestinian after he approached a border guard carrying a knife.

They said the Palestinian was "neutralized," and the Palestinian Authority Ministry of Health later said he had succumbed to his wounds.

No Israelis were reported injured during the incident.


Israel claims 24 'Hamas operatives' among 36 detained in West Bank raids

Israeli forces detained 36 Palestinians across the occupied West Bank overnight Monday, including 24 alleged "Hamas operatives" in the northern West Bank city of Qalqiliya, Israeli and Palestinian sources said.

The Israeli army said in a statement that a joint military, police and intelligence operation had "uncovered" a "vast Hamas network" in Qalqiliya.

"Overnight, 24 operatives were arrested, including senior Hamas operatives who have been previously arrested for participated and planning Hamas terror activity," the statement said.

It said that "the heads of the network" had been "operating to renew Hamas activity in the area and plotting terror activity."

It said the "network was directed, guided and funded by members of Hamas headquarters in Qatar and the Gaza Strip," adding that 35,000 shekels ($9,000) of "terror funds" had been seized by Israeli forces. more

Monday, 9 November 2015

Israel launches airstrike on southern Gaza Strip

Israel launched an airstrike on the Gaza Strip overnight Sunday in response to a rocket fired from the besieged enclave earlier in the day, witnesses and Israel's army said.

Locals said that Israeli warplanes targeted a training site belonging to the Al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas' military wing, between Rafah and Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip.

"In response to the attack, IAF aircraft targeted a Hamas position in the southern Gaza Strip," Israel's army said.

The site is located on the grounds of a former Israeli settlement which was evacuated in 2005.

No injuries were reported in the airstrike.

moreIsrael launches airstrike on southern Gaza Strip

Palestinian woman killed after alleged attack at Qalqiliya checkpoint

A 24-year-old Palestinian woman was shot dead by Israeli military forces at a checkpoint in Qalqiliya after she allegedly attempted to carry out a stabbing attack on Monday.

Israel's Defense Ministry said that a Palestinian woman approached cars at a military checkpoint north of the illegal Alfei Menashe settlement south of Qalqiliya, Israeli media reported.

Israeli forces reportedly asked the woman to stop advancing towards vehicles and fired warning shots in the air. She then drew a knife from her bag and Israeli soldiers shot her dead on the spot.

The incident occurred at around 7 a.m. at the Eliyahu checkpoint, with no Israelis injured. The woman was identified as Rasha Muhammad Oweisi, 24.

Oweisi was carrying a note in her bag stating: "I'm doing this with a clear head. I can't bear what I see and I can't suffer anymore," according to Israeli news site Ynet.

The note also contained an apology to her family. more

Sunday, 8 November 2015

Palestinian shot dead, 3 Israelis injured after suspected car attack

Israeli forces shot dead a Palestinian Sunday after he allegedly carried out a suspected vehicular attack that left three Israelis injured near the Tapuah Junction south of Nablus, Israeli media reported.

Israeli media reported that in addition to the three Israelis injured in the alleged attack, a fourth Israeli, 23, was shot and injured in the leg when a bullet aimed at the Palestinian driver ricocheted during the incident.

Two of the four Israelis have been evacuated via helicopter to a nearby hospital, one of which was in critical condition.

The Palestinian has been identified as Sulaiman Aqel Muhammad Shahin, 22, from al-Bireh City in Ramallah.

According to a Ma'an reporter near the scene, Israeli forces closed off Huwwara and Tapuah checkpoints south of Nablus following the suspected attack. The checkpoints control one of the main routes that connects the northern occupied West Bank to the central and southern districts. An Israeli police spokesperson did not immediately respond for comment. more

Saturday, 7 November 2015

Israeli worshipers enter Hebron, Palestinian homes stormed

Israeli forces on Saturday denied Palestinian entry to the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron’s Old City and stormed Palestinian homes as Jewish worshippers entered the area, locals said.

Local sources told Ma’an that Jewish worshipers continued entrance to the occupied West Bank city for a Jewish holiday for the second day in a row.

Over 4,000 Jewish worshipers reportedly visited the city Friday night, accompanied by a heavy Israeli military presence in the area, when two Israelis were shot and injured near the mosque.

The assailant reportedly fled the scene and Israeli forces searched the area following the attack.

Israeli news sites reported that Israeli soldiers deployed on the rooftops of Palestinian houses overlooking the holy site in order to protect Jewish worshipers in the area Saturday morning.

Eyewitnesses also told Ma’an that an Israeli soldier was shot by friendly fire in the al-Ras area east of the Ibrahimi Mosque.

Resident of the area, Jamal Abu Iseifan, told Ma’an that he “heard two gunshots and saw an Israeli ambulance evacuating a soldier who seemed to have been shot and injured.”

An Israeli army spokesperson confirmed that the Israeli soldier was injured by the “accidental discharge of a bullet,” but had no further information on Saturday’s incidents.

Several attacks have taken place over the past month near the Ibrahimi Mosque, known to Jews as the Tomb of the Patriarchs.

The holy site was split into a synagogue and a mosque following a 1994 attack by an Israeli settler who opened fire on Muslim worshipers, killing 29 and injuring more than 100 Palestinians. more

Friday, 6 November 2015

Israeli forces kill Palestinian woman, 72, after alleged car attack

BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces shot and killed an elderly Palestinian woman after an alleged vehicle attack in Halhul, north of Hebron on Friday.

A spokesperson at the Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem told Ma'an that the woman, aged 72, was dead upon arrival at the hospital.

Israeli media reported that the woman attempted to run over Israeli soldiers in Halhul and was shot and seriously wounded by Israeli forces.

The Jerusalem Post said that a "suspicious vehicle" drove at Israeli soldiers, with forces opening fire at the car.

No Israeli injuries were reported.

The victim was identified as Tharwat al-Sharawi, 72. Her husband, Fouad, was killed by Israeli forces during the First Intifada.

Two Palestinian youths who were standing at a gas station nearby were injured as Israeli gunfire shattered the car's windows.

Both youths were taken to the al-Ahli hospital in Hebron to treat their injuries, which were described as moderate.


76 Palestinians killed by Israeli forces since October 1st

Following the Thursday evening deadly shooting of a young man, north of the southern West Bank district of Hebron, the Palestinian Health Ministry has reported that the number of slain Palestinians, since October 1st, has arrived to 76, including 17 children and two women, while more than 2379 Palestinians have been injured. Names of slain Palestinian listed below this article.

The slain young Palestinian man in Hebron, has been identified as Malek Talal Sharif, 25; he was shot dead near the Gush Etzion settlement block, north of the southern West Bank city of Hebron.

Furthermore, seven Palestinians were injured Thursday in Tulkarem and Hebron; four of them in Tulkarem, including a child who lost his eye after being shot with an Israeli rubber-coated steel bullet, and three Palestinians were shot with live army fire in Hebron.

The Palestinian Health Ministry said Sharif’s death brings the number of Palestinians, killed by Israeli fire since October 1, to seventy-six, including seventeen children and two women.

One of the slain women, a mother, identified as Rahaf Yahya Hassan who was also five months pregnant, was killed along with her two-year old child after the soldiers bombarded their home in Gaza.

It added that at least 2379 Palestinians have been injured with live army fire, rubber-coated steel bullets, in addition to cuts and bruises after being assaulted by soldiers and colonialist settlers, while many suffered burns due to Israeli gas bombs and concussion grenades. more

Egyptian army shoots, kills Palestinian fisherman off Gaza coast

Egyptian military forces shot and killed a Palestinian fisherman off the coast of the southern Gaza Strip on Thursday afternoon, the Ministry of Health in the besieged enclave said.

Ashraf al-Qidra, spokesperson of the ministry, said Firas Mohammad Miqdad, 18, from Rafah was shot in the abdomen by Egyptian forces while at sea and died from his injuries. It is unclear why Egyptian forces opened fire.

In May, Egyptian naval forces opened fire at a Palestinian fishing boat off the coast of the southern Gaza Strip, injuring a fisherman from Rafah.

Egypt upholds an Israeli military blockade on Gaza, keeping borders largely closed and limiting imports, exports, and the freedom of movement of its residents. more

Palestinian shot, killed after alleged stab attack in Gush Etzion

A Palestinian man was shot and killed by Israeli forces in the Gush Etzion settlement bloc southwest of Bethlehem on Thursday after allegedly attempting to stab an Israeli soldier, Israel's army said.

"Moments ago, IDF forces thwarted an attack at a crowded bus station in Gush Etzion," an Israeli army spokesperson told Ma'an.

"A Palestinian armed with a knife attempted to stab a soldier, forces on site shot the assailant," she added, confirming that the Palestinian was killed.

The Palestinian was identified asMalik Talal al-Shareef, 25.

No Israelis were injured in the incident.


Thursday, 5 November 2015

Israeli forces level agricultural land inside Gaza Strip

Israeli forces on Thursday morning crossed the border fence between Israel and the southern Gaza Strip with bulldozers and "leveled" agricultural land in the area, locals said.

Locals said Israeli forces entered the area along the al-Farahin and al-Qarara neighborhoods of the Gaza strip a few hundred meters inside the border fence and began flattening the ground there with bulldozers, and removing visual obstructions such as trees and bushes.

The forces, locals said, fired gunshots into the air and created smokes screens to conceal their activities. Locals added that Israeli drones hovered over the area during the Israeli military operation.

An Israeli army spokesperson did not immediately respond for comment. more

Israel releases hunger striker Muhammad Allan after year in detention

Palestinian prisoner Muhammad Allan was released late Wednesday from Israel prison custody, ending a year-long stint in administrative detention that he undertook a 66-day hunger strike to protest.

Head of the Palestinian Authority Prisoners' Affairs Committee, Issa Qaraqe, told Ma'an that Allan was taken to the Thabet Thabet hospital in Tulkarem for a medical checkup following his release.

Allan, a 31-year-old lawyer from the southern Nablus village of Einabus, was held without charge or trial for seven months before he began a hunger strike in June to protest what he described as "the absence of law in Israeli court."

He ended the hunger strike 66 days later after Israel's Supreme Court agreed to suspend his sentence. He had slipped into a coma twice, and there were fears he may have suffered brain damage.

Israel later reinstated his sentence when his health improved. Allan immediately began another hunger strike, but ended it two days later following consultations with his lawyer. more

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

PA Ministry of Health sends $1.3 million of medical supplies to Gaza

The Palestinian Authority Ministry of Health sent a medical aid convoy worth over five million shekels ($1,289,720) to Gaza from the ministry's warehouse in Nablus, a statement said Wednesday.

The shipment included ten truckloads worth of medical supplies and was sent under direct orders from Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah.

The supplies included cancer treatment medications, kidney medications and other supplies needed by residents in the besieged coastal enclave.

The ministry noted that the PA has sent numerous truckloads of medical supplies to the Gaza Strip, totaling at least $5.2 million in 2015, not including the most recent shipment.

Gaza's ministry of health warned earlier this year that the lives of Gazans were at risk if the Israeli-Egyptian blockade continued. more

Hamas, Islamic Jihad warn of 'new methods of resistance'

GAZA CITY (Ma’an) – Hamas and Islamic Jihad officials warned Tuesday that the factions planned to launch new methods of resistance if Israel continued lethal force against Palestinians.

In a rally organized by the Islamic movements in Gaza City, officials said that the groups would join the “Intifada” if the “occupation continues to execute Palestinians.”

The rally was held in a display of support for the ongoing upheaval in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank.

During a speech, Islamic Jihad leader Khalid al-Batsh said:“Al-Quds Brigades and al-Qassam Brigades won’t accept it that only one side bleeds,” the leader added, referring to the military wings of Islamic Jihad and Hamas.

Addressing Israel, al-Batsh said: “Your crimes won’t succeed to stop the Intifada, and you will pay a heavy toll for executions you conduct in the field.”

He urged the Palestinian Authority to stop security coordination with Israel “once and for all” and to side with resistance against the Israeli occupation. more

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Israeli forces storm, shut down Hebron radio station

Israeli forces on Tuesday morning stormed the offices of a Palestinian radio station in Hebron, where they destroyed equipment and ordered the station's closure, in the latest violation of press freedoms in the occupied Palestinian territory.

Manbar al-Hurriyya (Freedom Tribune) radio station wrote on its website that Israeli forces had destroyed equipment inside the offices and confiscated other equipment.

The soldiers then issued a military order notifying employees that the station was to be closed and its broadcast banned.

The Israeli army said in a statement that the station was shut down "as part of the ongoing battle against incitement."

It continued: "Forces confiscated broadcasting equipment in order to prevent the incitement which has caused a flare of violence in the region over recent weeks."

It accused the radio station of encouraging "stabbing attacks" and "violent riots," and reporting "false and malicious claims of security forces executing and kidnapping Palestinians in order to provoke violence."

The statement said that Israeli forces had shut down the station twice before, in 2002 and again in 2008. more

Eight Palestinians shot with Israeli live rounds near Jerusalem

Medical sources have reported, Monday, that eight Palestinians were shot with live Israeli army fire, during clashes with soldiers invading Qotna village, northwest of Jerusalem, following the funeral procession of two young slain Palestinians.

The clashes took place following the funeral ceremony of Mohammad Shamasna, 23, and Omar al-Faqeeh, 25.

Shamasna was killed in occupied Jerusalem on October 13, after the army claimed he “attempted to snatch a weapon from an Israeli soldier.”

Al-Faqeeh, was killed on October 17, after the army alleged he "attempted to stab a soldier" in the Qalandia terminal, north of Jerusalem.

The Israeli army refused to transfer the remains of the two slain Palestinians, until Monday, November 2. more

Monday, 2 November 2015

Palestinian teen killed at Jenin checkpoint after alleged attack

A Palestinian teenager was shot and killed on Monday at the al-Jalama checkpoint north of Jenin after allegedly attempting to attack Israeli soldiers with a knife, Israel's army said.

The Israeli army said an "attempted stabbing" took place near Afula, with one Palestinian suspect shot and another arrested at the scene.

Initial reports say the incident occurred some 150 meters from the al-Jalama checkpoint north of Jenin after Israeli soldiers approached two Palestinians who they say were acting suspiciously.

One of the suspects then pulled out a knife and was shot after ignoring warnings to lay down his weapon, The Jerusalem Post reported.

The Palestinian liaison office identified the victim as Ahmed Awad Abu al-Rub, 16, from the town of Qabatiya.

Mahmoud Muamin Kamil, 17, also from Qabatia, was detained following the incident.

On Saturday, Mahmoud Talal Mahmoud Nazzal, 18, was shot and killed at the al-Jalama checkpoint after allegedly attacking a security guard. more

Sunday, 1 November 2015

Thousands march in Hebron funerals after Israel returns 2 bodies

Thousands of mourners on Sunday filled the streets of Sair and Surif villages in the southern occupied West Bank district of Hebron for the funerals of two young men who were killed by Israeli forces in October, following alleged stabbing attempts.

Israeli authorities delivered the bodies of Raed Jaradat, 22, and Mahmoud Ghneimat, 20, to the Palestinian liaison department early Sunday morning. The remains were then transferred to the Hebron public hospital before they were taken to their hometowns.

Jaradat, from the village of Sair east of Hebron, was shot dead by Israeli soldiers on Oct. 26, after Israelis sources said he stabbed and injured a 19-year-old Israeli soldier in the neck. Similarly, Ghneimat, from the village of Surif west of Hebron, was shot dead on Oct. 22 after Israeli sources said he had attempted a stabbing attack, however the circumstances around the incident are unclear. more