Monday, 19 January 2015

Hamas says EU appeal to keep it on terror list 'immoral'

Hamas slammed as "immoral" Monday an EU appeal to keep it on the bloc's terror blacklist, a month after a European court ordered its removal.

"The European Union's insistence on keeping Hamas on the list of terrorist organizations is an immoral step, and reflects the EU's total bias in favor of the Israeli occupation," Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri told AFP.

"It provides it (Israel) with the cover for its crimes against the Palestinian people," he added.

Foreign ministers from the 28 EU member states decided at a Monday meeting to appeal the decision taken by the General Court of the European Union on Dec. 17, the bloc's foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said.

The ruling by the EU's second highest court had said that the blacklisting of Hamas in 2001 was based not on sound legal judgements but on conclusions derived from the media and the Internet.

Hamas, which has dominated the Gaza Strip since 2007, had appealed against its inclusion on the blacklist on several grounds.

Israel's closest ally the United States has urged the EU to keep up its sanctions on Hamas, saying the US position had "not changed" and Hamas is still a "designated foreign terrorist organization." more

Palestinian killed by Israeli police funeral for another man murdered by police

A Palestinian Bedouin man was killed late Sunday during the funeral for another man shot dead last week by Israeli forces in southern Israel. Sami Ibrahim Zayadna, 45, died after inhaling tear gas fired by Israeli police at mourners in the Bedouin city of Rahat. Over 40 other people were injured during the clashes, including Rahat mayor Talal al-Qureinawi and Raed Salah, head of the Islamic Movement. Twenty-two people were treated at Soroka hospital in Beersheba, with three sustaining serious injuries. The clashes began after Israeli police entered the cemetery as mourners were burying Sami al-Jaar, 22, who was shot dead last week while standing on the patio of his home during clashes between police and local youths in the neighborhood. Israeli police entered the funeral ceremony, despite an agreement with Rahat municipality to stay clear of the area, and fired plastic bullets and tear gas at mourners as Raed Salah was delivering a eulogy. "The funeral has become a battle from one side as we were being chased and dozens were hurt though there were no clashes in the place," Salah told Ma'an. "When I uttered the first sentence of the funeral oration a tear gas canister was fired in front of us. We thought it was fired accidentally, but showers of tear gas followed. It was clear they wanted to disperse the mourners before they could bid the martyr farewell and I think the officers on the ground were receiving instructions from the helicopter which was hovering above the mourners focusing its lights on us." more