Sunday, 5 June 2016

Egypt opens Rafah crossing for fourth day

GAZA, (PIC)-- The Egyptian authorities on Sunday morning opened the Rafah border crossing for the fourth day for the travel of a limited number of passengers. Only 10 buses carrying a total of 1,008 passengers had left Gaza yesterday through the Rafah crossing.

According to the border and crossings authority in Gaza, five ambulances carrying a number of wounded and sick citizens also crossed into the Egyptian side on Saturday. Last Thursday, 369 Palestinian passengers, who were stranded in Egypt, were able to enter Gaza, while the Egyptian authorities rejected the travel requests of 40 others and prevented them from leaving Gaza. more

Will Lieberman order a new attack on Gaza?

Avigdor Lieberman’s apparently inexorable rise in Israeli politics continues.

The blowhard nationalist, former nightclub bouncer and secular sectarian who would rather a pure Jewish state than countenance equal rights for Jews and non-Jews, now holds the second most powerful ministry in the country.

Lieberman’s record suggests this could either end unremarkably or very, very badly indeed. Between shooting from the hip and bending to prevailing winds – also known as political pragmatism – there doesn’t seem to be a lot of substance.

Even by the questionable standards of Israeli politics, the defense portfolio is a huge gift to a man who was convicted of a 1999 assault on a 12-year-old boy and has been implicated in a major corruption investigation.

That is without taking into account countless incendiary comments about Palestinians, for whom he is trying to introduce their very own death penalty, Palestinian citizens of Israel, who he wants to expel, and foreign politicians.

When Hosni Mubarak was president of Egypt, Lieberman told him he should either visit Israel or “go to hell.”

More recently, he has hurled insults at Swedish foreign minister Margot Wallstrom.

Responding to Wallstrom’s call for an investigation into Israel’s extrajudicial executions of Palestinians earlier his year, Lieberman claimed the “only thing” she hadn’t done yet was to “physically join Palestinian terrorists and stab Jews.” more

Palestinians rally in Gaza to mark 49 years of occupation

Palestinians in the Gaza Strip commemorated on Saturday the anniversary of the 1967 Israeli invasion and occupation of the West Bank, Gaza, Sinai, and the Golan Heights that began on June 5, a day that Palestinians refer to as the Naksa, meaning setback.

Demonstrators at the Naksa Day rally waved Palestinian flags as they marched from the Unknown Soldier Square in central Gaza City to the UNRWA headquarters, condemning Israel for its continued crimes against Palestinians.

Hamas official Ismail Radwan called for achieving national reconciliation in accordance with the Cairo agreement, referring to the 2012 accords between Fatah, Hamas, and the Palestinian National Council to form an interim government in preparation for national elections, which haven't been held since 2006.

Radwan warned Palestinian factions against pinning their hopes on international negotiation efforts that promise “illusions” that “will not achieve anything,” in an allusion to the French initiative to hold a multilateral peace conference, preliminary talks for which kicked off in Paris on Friday.

Hamas, along with other Palestinian factions, released a joint statement on Friday slamming the PLO-supported initiative as a “dangerous violation against agreed-upon national rights, especially the right of return.” more