Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Egyptian Minister: We will confiscate Hamas funds, arrest its leaders

CAIRO, (PIC)-- The Egyptian Minister of Justice Mahfouz Saber said that a government committee will start confiscating all properties and funds of Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas, after being labeled “terrorist organization”.

Mahfouz told Ahramonline website that “Hamas has been labeled as a terrorist organization which is dangerous to the Egyptian national security. Thus, its members in Egypt will be arrested and its funds along with headquarters will be confiscated”.

“The government will not appeal the (court) verdict against Hamas which means it is enforceable”, the minister elaborated. more

Israel says doubling water supplies to Gaza

Israel is to double the amount of water it channels annually to Palestinians in the blockaded Gaza Strip, a defense ministry body said Wednesday.

A humanitarian crisis has gripped Gaza since a July-August war with Israel, which controls most of the territory's resources, its imports and exports as well as the movement of people.

The body responsible for coordinating Israeli government activity in the Palestinian territories, COGAT, said it is to increase the volume of water it provides to Gaza from five to 10 million cubic meters (175 to 350 million cubic feet) per year, beginning within days.

The decision was in response to growing needs in the Palestinian enclave, a spokeswoman told AFP. more

UN envoy urges Israel to investigate civilian deaths during Gaza war

Israel should investigate the killing of more than 1,500 Palestinian civilians, one third of them children, during the war on the Gaza Strip in the summer of 2014, and should make the findings public, according to a report submitted Tuesday to the United Nations Human Rights Council.

The report was issued by Makarim Wibisono who has recently become UN Human Rights Council special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territory. It was his first report since he replaced Richard Falk.

In his report, Wibisono, a former Indonesian ambassador, said that 2,256 Palestinians were killed during the military confrontation in the Gaza Strip in July and August 2014 of whom 1,563 were civilians including 538 children. Israel, he added, says its army launched a military offensive in response to rockets fired from the Hamas-run coastal enclave at Israeli towns bordering the area. Sixty-six Israeli soldiers and five civilians were killed.

"The stark disparity in casualty figures on the two sides ... reflects the (skewed) balance of power and the disproportionate cost borne by Palestinian civilians, raising questions as to whether Israel adhered to the international law principles of distinction, proportionality and precautions," Wibisono said. more