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    Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution' (OP)


    Salaam

    With Trump in power, Netanyahu has a free hand.


    Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'


    Land grab law 'allows theft, stalls peace process'

    Law that retroactively legalises settler homes on private Palestinian land widely condemned as legitimising theft.


    Israel's land grab law that retroactively legalises thousands of settlement homes in the occupied West Bank legitimises theft, violates international law and ends the prospect of a two-state solution, according to politicians, legal experts and human rights groups.

    The so-called "Regulation Bill" instantly drew wide condemnation as it was voted in by members of the Knesset late on Monday with a 60 to 52 majority.

    The law applies to about 4,000 settlement homes in the West Bank for which settlers could prove ignorance that they had built on privately owned Palestinian land and had received encouragement from the Israeli state to do so.

    Three Israeli NGOs - Peace Now, Yesh Din and the Association for Civil Rights in Israel - and numerous Palestinians said they intend to petition the Supreme Court to cancel the law.

    UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Tuesday in a statement: "This bill is in contravention of international law and will have far reaching legal consequences for Israel."

    The EU's foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said in a statement that the bloc "condemns" the law and urges against its implementation "to avoid measures that further raise tensions and endanger the prospects for a peaceful solution to the conflict".

    Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said the law was an aggression against the Palestinian people.

    "That bill is contrary to international law," Abbas said following a meeting with French President Francois Hollande in Paris. "This is an aggression against our people that we will be opposing in international organisations.

    "What we want is peace ... but what Israel does is to work toward one state based on apartheid."

    Hollande called on Israel to go back on the law, saying it would "pave the way for an annexation, de-facto, of the occupied territories, which would be contrary to the two-state solution".

    Hours before Abbas' meeting with Hollande, Saeb Erekat, secretary general of the Palestinian Liberation Organisation, told the Associated Press news agency that the law puts "the last nail in the coffin of the two-state solution".

    Calling the move "theft", Erekat said the ruling showed "the Israeli government trying to legalise looting Palestinian land".

    The Arab League also accused Israel of "stealing the land" from Palestinians.

    "The law in question is only a cover for stealing the land and appropriating the property of Palestinians," said the head of the Cairo-based organisation, Ahmed Aboul Gheit.

    Palestinian owners will be compensated financially or with other land, but cannot negotiate their terms.

    The law is a continuation of "Israeli policies aimed at eliminating any possibility of a two-state solution and the establishment of an independent Palestinian state", Aboul Gheit said.

    Jordan, one of the few Arab states to have diplomatic ties with Israel, also denounced what it called "a provocative law likely to kill any hope of a two-state solution".

    According to the UN envoy for the Middle East peace process, Nickolay Mladenov, the law crosses a "very thick red line" towards annexation of the occupied West Bank, and sets a "very dangerous precedent".

    Speaking to the AFP news agency, he said: "This is the first time the Israeli Knesset legislates in the occupied Palestinian lands and particularly on property issues."

    He also raised the possibility the law could open Israel up to potential prosecution at the International Criminal Court, a threat Israel's own top government lawyer, attorney general Avichai Mandelblit, has also warned of.

    Mladenov called for strong international condemnation of the legislation but declined to criticise the US after President Donald Trump's administration refused to comment on it.

    Trump is more sympathetic to Israel's settlement policies than previous US presidents; the Israeli government has approved plans to build thousands of new homes on occupied territory since the far-right leader settled into the White House.

    "I think that is a very preliminary statement," Mladenov said. "Obviously they do need to consult, this is a new administration that has just come into office and they should be given the time and the space to find their policies."

    White House spokesman Sean Spicer said the US was likely to discuss the law with Netanyahu when the Israeli prime minister visits on February 15, but did not comment further in a press briefing on Tuesday.

    David Harris, head of AJC, the global Jewish advocacy organisation, said that "Israel's High Court can and should reverse this misguided legislation" ahead of Netanyahu's meeting with Trump in February.

    That was also the message from Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman, who said last week: "The chance that it will be struck down by the Supreme Court is 100 percent."

    'Against all international laws'

    International law considers all settlements to be illegal, but Israel distinguishes between those it sanctions and those it does not, dubbed outposts.

    A Palestinian Cabinet minister also called on the international community for support.

    "Nobody can legalise the theft of the Palestinian lands. Building settlements is a crime, building settlements is against all international laws," said Palestinian Tourism and Antiquities Minister Rula Maayaa. "I think it is time now for the international community to act concretely to stop the Israelis from these crimes."

    Nabil Abu Rdeneh, a spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, called the law "unacceptable" and urged the international community to act immediately.

    "This is an escalation that would only lead to more instability and chaos," Rdeneh said.

    Palestinians want the occupied West Bank, east Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip - territories Israel occupied in the 1967 Middle East war - for their future state.

    The international community views settlements as illegal and an obstacle to reaching peace.

    Shortly before leaving office, US President Barack Obama allowed the UN Security Council to pass a resolution declaring settlements illegal.

    Tobias Ellwood, Britain's Middle East minister, also condemned the land grab bill, saying it "is of great concern that the bill paves the way for significant growth in settlements deep in the West Bank".

    Yuval Shany, an international law professor at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, said the law violates basic rights, interferes with property rights and is discriminatory because it regulates only the transfer of land from Palestinians to Jews.

    http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/02/israel-land-grab-law-ends-hope-state-solution-170207143602924.html
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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

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    Salaam

    Another update.

    Blurb


    U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo changed a long-standing U.S. policy by saying that Jewish settlements in the West Bank do not violate international law.




    The Guardian view on Israeli settlements: still illegal

    The Trump administration’s declaration cannot change international law. But it will be seen as a green light for expansion and annexation


    The secretary of state’s announcement that the US no longer considers Israeli settlements on occupied Palestinian land to be illegal is appalling. It is also the dismal culmination of the Trump administration’s record.

    Washington has done all it can to aid Israel’s rightwing government, punish Palestinians and bury the two-state solution: moving its embassy to Jerusalem, ending funding to the UN Palestinian refugee agency, and recognising Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights.

    While David Friedman, the US ambassador to Israel, and others have a deep ideological commitment to these measures, the administration has done these things primarily to boost the prospects of Benjamin Netanyahu and bolster Donald Trump’s support among evangelicals. Mr Netanyahu is clinging on to power, as his rival Benny Gantz – who has also welcomed the US decision – struggles to form a rival government. Yet another Israeli election, the third in less than a year, looks highly likely, and the attorney general’s decision on whether to indict Mr Netanyahu on corruption charges is expected within days. In the US, Mr Trump surely welcomes a diversion from the impeachment hearings.

    This measure is the latest of the administration’s efforts to destroy the international rules-based order. The declaration is symbolic rather than practical. The settlements remain illegal; Mr Trump’s fiat does not change international law. Nor does the purported rationale, that condemning them as illegal has not brought peace. As Jeremy Ben-Ami, president of the liberal pro-Israel lobby group J Street, tweeted: “Doing it for 52 years doesn’t make it legal, it makes it worse.”

    It is true that settlements have flourished regardless of international strictures, and that previous US governments have done little more than scold. Settlements grew exponentially while Barack Obama was president. But the US eventually grew so exasperated that it allowed through a UN security council resolution demanding a halt to all construction in the occupied territories, rather than veto it, and John Kerry made a blistering attack on Mr Netanyahu’s government.

    The administration has not only broken with decades of policy but with most allies. The European Union was quick to reaffirm that all settlement activity is illegal, that it erodes the viability of the two-state solution and the prospects for a lasting peace, and that it should be ended. Democratic presidential candidates were quick to attack the announcement, with Elizabeth Warren pledging to reverse it. Her rivals should make sure that Israel is in no doubt about their positions.

    The predictability of this announcement makes it more disgraceful, not less. It does not merely recognise the facts on the ground, as Mike Pompeo claimed. It encourages further expansion and annexation, as the welcome from pro-settlement politicians and campaigners has demonstrated. To claim, as Mr Pompeo has done, that it increases the likelihood of a peace deal is an Orwellian use of language. The US appears to be abandoning all pretence of acting as a broker. But if it really wishes to face the facts, it should acknowledge that a single state will not be both Jewish and democratic.

    https://www.theguardian.com/commenti...-still-illegal

    It is true that settlements have flourished regardless of international strictures, and that previous US governments have done little more than scold. Settlements grew exponentially while Barack Obama was president. But the US eventually grew so exasperated that it allowed through a UN security council resolution demanding a halt to all construction in the occupied territories, rather than veto it, and John Kerry made a blistering attack on Mr Netanyahu’s government.
    I think the Guardian is more upset that Trump exposed (as if any more exposure was necessary) the farce that is the 'Liberal' International Order.







    Edit - Canada breaking rank, this is supposed to make a difference?

    Last edited by Junon; 11-22-2019 at 11:03 PM.

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    More comment.

    The Palestinians only option is resistance

    Veteran Palestinian journalist Abdel Bari Atwan says the U.S.’s decision to back illegal Israeli settlements in the West Bank is another nail in the coffin of the so-called two state solution, and leaves Palestinians with no other option than resistance.

    Even more shocking than the US’s decision to recognise Israeli settlements in the West Bank as legal was the response of the Palestinian Authority (PA) to the move.

    It deemed it sufficient to simply announce, via its chief “negotiator” Saeb Ereikat, that it would complain to the UN Security Council and International Court of Justice.

    The PA organised mass rallies to hail its president Mahmoud Abbas when he secured an inconsequential vote from the UN General Assembly recognising Palestine as a state. But it failed to organise a single demonstration to protest this latest move, let alone act on the decisions taken long ago by the Palestine National Council and Central Council to withdraw recognition of the State of Israel and halt security cooperation with it – which protects the settlers and persecutes decent people in the Occupied Territories.

    The US’s latest decision, instigated by the White House’s ambassador to Israel David Friedman, is the latest in a series of gifts to Tel Aviv.

    It follows its recognition of occupied Jerusalem as Israel’s capital; its endorsement of the takeover of Syria’s Golan Heights; and its green-lighting of Israel annexing the West Bank and accelerating the pace of settlement there.

    These are all part of Trump’s “Deal of the Century,” in which some Arab regimes are complicit.

    Trump and his administration have, unsurprisingly, chosen to align themselves totally with the extreme-right led by Benjamin Netanyahu in the current political crisis in Israel, following the failure of either of the two big political blocs (Likud and Blue & White) to form a government.

    U.S. endorsement of the illegal settlements is aimed at giving Netanyahu a boost if, as looks increasingly likely, another general election is called, as well as bolstering Trump’s own re-election prospects.

    In the process, the move destroys any prospect of a two-state solution and leaves the Palestinians with only one option: to live under the tutelage of a racist state resembling the former Apartheid regime in South Africa – until such time as that regime collapses, as history teaches us it must, sooner or later.

    The current U.S. Administration is treating the Palestinians in the same way America’s White colonisers treated the so-called “Red Indians”: denying them any rights as a prelude to denying their very existence and exterminating or exiling them – on the grounds that they have no legal title to the land of their forebears – for the benefit of the colonisers.

    In Trump’s eyes, Israel is above the law and the Palestinians do not exist. And if they do exist physically, they have no legal or legitimate rights, including the right to live in dignity, and should be grateful if they are allowed to work as toilet-cleaners for the occupiers.

    So the reality is that Palestinians have been left with no alternative to resistance, in all its forms. They must resist this outrageous injustice and those who stand behind it. And they must reconsider all their doctrines about coexistence with a racist regime that refuses to coexist with them and does everything it can to subjugate them and deny them any modicum of their rights.

    https://5pillarsuk.com/2019/11/21/th...is-resistance/
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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    More comment on Trumps latest decision.

    Trump’s and Netanyahu’s pyrrhic victory: US inadvertently stumbles into one-state solution for Palestine-Israel conflict

    United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on 18 November that the US is softening its position on Israeli settlements in the West Bank. He repudiated the 1978 State Department legal opinion which stated that Jewish settlements in the occupied territories are “inconsistent with international law”.

    It is hard to determine whether the move was intended to rescue Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s political career or to buy the Jewish lobby’s support for President Trump at a critical time. It is reasonable to assume that the policy was put forth to advance both aims.

    Pompeo’s declaration was, predictably, welcomed by Netanyahu and denounced by Palestinian officials and anyone else who still advances the delusional two-state solution. As with Pompeo, I am far from an expert on international law, but it seems the notion of international law is vague or elastic enough to allow the Pompeo to (mis) interpret it in a radical manner. Yet, unlike most Palestinian solidarity campaigners, I see Trump, his administration and the recent move as a positive development.

    However inadvertently, Trump has finally committed the US to the one-state solution. It is hard to deny that the area between the “[Jordan] River and the [Mediterranean] Sea” is a single piece of land. It shares one electric grid, one pre-dial telephone code (+972) and one sewage system. At present, the land is ruled over by a racist, tribal and discriminatory ideology through an entity that calls itself “the Jewish State”; and declares itself home for every Jew around the world; yet, is abusive, lethal and some would say genocidal towards the indigenous people of the land.

    The 18 November move may buy Netanyahu some time and it may save Trump from being evicted from his current residence, but what it did most clearly was to redeliver a message to the Palestinians: In the battle for your liberation you are alone. America is not a negotiator, it has never been one. The USA has a side in the conflict and it is not your side.

    In categorical terms, Pompeo’s declaration repeats Trump’s earlier decision to move the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. On 6 December 2017 Trump announced that the United States recognised Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and ordered the relocation of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. No doubt, the move bought Trump support from the Jewish lobby in America, and political gain for Netanyahu in the Jewish State, it was also an unambiguous message to the Palestinians: There is no prospect of a harmonious and peaceful solution for your plight.

    For the Palestinians, the move also exposed the misleading and dangerous nature of their “solidarity” movement. Jewish “anti’-Zionist institutions have undertaken a relentless effort to suppress the Palestinians’ right of return and replace it with watery alternatives such as “end of occupation” or “the right to BDS [Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions]. Trump’s move forces the Palestinians to acknowledge that they are alone in their battle and to finally accept that the right of return is the core and the essence of their plight. Less than four months after Trump’s Jerusalem decision, on 30 March 2018, thousands of Gazans gathered on the Israeli border to demand a return to their land.

    That clumsy decision by Trump, intended to serve some immediate political purpose to do with Jewish support, has matured into a vast awakening for the Palestinians. Week after week, for almost three years, Gazans have arrived at the Gaza border in their thousands to bravely confront the Israeli army’s merciless snipers, tanks and air force. The Hamas movement owes a big thank you to Trump who has managed to fuel and unite the Palestinians with a renewed spirit of fearless resistance. Israeli military analysts and commanders admit that the situation at the Gaza border is pretty much out of control. They agree that Israel’s power of deterrence is literally a matter of nostalgia. Accordingly, Palestinian resistance organisations do not hesitate to retaliate against Israel. Last week Israel was hit by some 400 rockets fired over the course of only two days in response to Israel’s assassination of a Palestinian Islamic Jihad militant.

    Pompeo’s declaration provides an explicit and necessary message to the Palestinians in general and in the West Bank in particular. The conflict is not progressing towards a peaceful resolution. Those among the Palestinians who advocated the “two-states solution” will have to hide now. Pompeo has affirmed that there is one Holy Land between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea. From now on, the battle over this disputed land is whether it will be subject to the racist discriminatory ideology implied by the notion of “the Jewish state” and its “National Bill“, or if it will transform itself into a “state of its citizens” as is inherit in the notion of one Palestine.

    https://www.redressonline.com/2019/1...rael-conflict/

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    Another update.




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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    Another update.



    And even more anti semitism.



    I hope this is a parody.

    Last edited by Junon; 01-04-2020 at 01:17 PM.

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    Another update



    Former UN official slams Israel 'humiliation' of Palestinians

    Former UN Assistant Secretary-General Andrew Gilmour has described the situation for Palestinians as 'appalling' and 'indescribable'.


    Israel's treatment of the Palestinians is a deliberate act of humiliation, according to a former top United Nations human rights official, who stepped down from his post at the end of last year.

    He has described the situation for Palestinians as "appalling" and "indescribable".

    Al Jazeera's James Bays reports.

    https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/...164940585.html

    More antisemitism

    Last edited by Junon; 01-20-2020 at 03:31 PM.

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    Another update

    Donald Trump’s Israel-Palestine real estate deal is intolerable

    There is not the remotest chance any Palestinian leadership could accept these terms


    John Kerry, secretary of state under US president Barack Obama, told Congress in 2013 that any chance of a two-state solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict would be physically unfeasible within a year or two due to encroachments on to occupied Palestinian land. A year later, his big push to achieve it had hit the buffers and renewed the advance of Israeli settlements.

    With the advent of Donald Trump to the presidency, a two-state outcome became politically as well as physically impossible. The blueprint he unveiled yesterday, with Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, purports to offer Palestinians eventual and conditional sovereignty in disjointed enclaves on roughly two-thirds of the occupied territories — augmented by land swaps from Israel. Yet the only practical effect of this much-hyped “deal of the century” is to greenlight Israel’s annexation of the West Bank land it has colonised for the past half century. Mr Netanyahu’s government says it will ask the Knesset to annex all the settlements and the Jordan Valley this Sunday.

    With its veneer of even-handedness and endless repetition, the plan posits a four-year moratorium on settlement-building while talks proceed. Some hope; that window just slammed shut. The Palestinians have refused to take part in such an obviously one-sided exercise. Israel’s borders will expand, but its legitimacy will erode.

    With hopes of a real state of their own dashed, it is now likely the Palestinians inside Israel and the occupied territories will wage an apartheid-style fight for equal rights in the land between the Jordan river and the Mediterranean. It is not just the future of Palestinians at stake here but that of Israelis too.

    It has escaped no one’s notice that this smokescreen of a deal comes as Mr Trump faces impeachment charges and Mr Netanyahu is indicted on charges of corruption — and as they both face re-election. Yet Mr Trump has long telegraphed his bias in favour of Israel.

    He moved the US embassy to Jerusalem, in effect recognising the Holy City — including occupied Arab East Jerusalem — as Israel’s capital. He closed the Palestinian delegation in Washington. He cut US funding to the UN agency that provides education and healthcare to roughly 5m Palestinian refugees and their descendants. He even cut off aid to Palestinian hospitals in East Jerusalem.

    By last November, when secretary of state Mike Pompeo announced that the US no longer considered settlements on occupied land to be illegal — contradicting the UN Security Council as well his own department’s legal finding from 1978 — annexation became a certainty.

    The Trump plan also awards Israel the entire Jordan Valley, the bread basket of any putative Palestinian state — although Palestinians may apply to lease back their own land — as well as security control, and therefore effective sovereignty, over all the contested land. If peace was ever the aim, this plan is not just stillborn. Chunks of it are bogus.

    Take the settlement-building moratorium, moot in any case now Israel is moving to annex them. The municipal boundaries of existing settlements far exceed their built-up area, offering huge scope for expansion. Ma’ale Adumim, the biggest settlement near Jerusalem, has total acreage equal to the city of Tel Aviv. Or examine the offer of a Palestinian “capital” in East Jerusalem. This is in fringe territory bolted on to the city when Israel annexed it after the 1967 Arab-Israeli war, and lies beyond the security wall Israel has built in the West Bank. It is not East Jerusalem.

    As he met a beaming Mr Netanyahu at the White House this week, Mr Trump said the plan is so “overly good” to Palestinians that “there’s a very good chance that they’re going to want this”.

    There is not the remotest chance any Palestinian leadership could accept these terms of surrender. It is a real estate deal, put together by Mr Trump and his son-in-law and fellow property tycoon, Jared Kushner. It entails the surrender of land in exchange for a collection of scattered cantons and promised investment of $50bn; and, at best, a supra-municipal government that has been Mr Netanyahu’s real intention for almost three decades.

    Nor is there much chance that the Arab leaders the US and Israel have courted, including Mohammed bin Salman, heir to the Saudi throne, or Abdul Fattah al-Sisi, Egypt’s president, can back this process. Neither country sent a representative to its announcement. Annexation could also imperil the treaties Israel has with Egypt and Jordan. The Palestinian Authority, with limited autonomy in 40 per cent of the West Bank, and already discredited, may collapse, along with the vital security co-operation it provides to Israel.

    Whether Arab rulers care about Palestinian rights is irrelevant. They care about survival — far from assured over the past decade of turmoil. Palestine is an emotive issue with their peoples.

    Mr Trump cares about survival too. His Israel policy is really about ticking off the wishlist of evangelical Protestant voters in the US, who may decide the outcome of November’s election. American Jews, a fraction of their numbers, are conflicted about Israeli policies. The evangelicals, including Mr Pompeo and vice-president Mike Pence, believe the Second Coming will be hastened by the return of Jews to all the Land of Israel. Israelis now face a single state in which Arabs will come to outnumber Jews — and insist on the same rights.

    Some American Jewish leaders long critical of Israeli and US policy argue that only if Israelis are faced with the realities of a single state will they revert to the preference for two states. But that option was just taken off the table.

    https://www.ft.com/content/49a1a280-...5-169ba7be433d



    Turkey slams ‘stillborn’ US Mideast peace plan

    So-called 'deal of century' aims at killing two-state solution, usurping Palestinian lands, says Foreign Ministry


    Turkey on Tuesday slammed the U.S. Mideast peace plan, saying the people and land of Palestine were not for sale.

    In an official statement, which came following U.S. President Donald Trump’s press conference in the White House, where he shared details of the so-called "deal of the century", the ministry said the agreement was “stillborn”.

    "This is an annexation plan aiming at usurping Palestinian lands and killing two-state solution," the ministry said, adding that Palestinian people and lands cannot be purchased.

    Stressing that Jerusalem was a red line in the eyes of Turkey, the statement said Ankara would not let Israel justify its occupation and persecution.

    "We will always stand by the brotherly people of Palestine. We will continue to work for an independent Palestine within Palestinian lands."

    https://www.aa.com.tr/en/jerusalem-r...-plan/1717249#

    Iran Continues Attacks On Trump's 'Deal Of The Century', Appealing To Muslims

    Senior Iranian officials continue their condemnations of President Donald Trump’s Middle East peace plan dubbed “The Deal of the Century”, calling it “despicable” and “highway to hell”.

    After initial attacks by the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and other officials, Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani has tweeted, “Enough of these foolish attempts. The Most Despicable Plan of the Century.”

    The plan which envisages an eventual two-state solution for Israel and Palestinians has been criticized as offering much less to Palestinians than previous ideas of a peace plan. Criticism has also been voiced for the United States not making a strong attempt to gain Palestinian agreement for the plan.

    Iran’s messaging attempts to rally support among Muslims, saying that Muslim lands are being grabbed and Palestinians being subjected to apartheid. However, reactions to Iran’s rhetoric in the Muslim world has been muted.

    Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has also continued his Twitter attacks on the peace proposal, both in Persian and English. In his latest criticism, the Islamic Republic’s foreign minister has appealed to Muslims saying, "Vision for Peace" looks more like "Highway to Hell". We Muslims need to wake up: The U.S. never was—and can never be—anything resembling an honest broker.”

    https://en.radiofarda.com/a/iran-con.../30406309.html

    Malaysia says Deal of the Century “utterly unacceptable”

    KUALA LAMPUR, Friday, January 31, 2020 (WAFA) – The Malaysian government said in a statement today that after it carefully studied the proposed peace deal for Israel and Palestine - the so-called 'Deal of the Century', which was announced by the US President Donald Trump, it found the proposal “utterly unacceptable.”

    “Malaysia believes the Palestinians have every right to reject it,” read the statement which was issued by the Malaysian Prime Minister’s Office.

    It continued, “Palestine, an aggrieved party that has been subjected to the prolonged Israeli illegal occupation, was never directly involved or even consulted in the formulation of the proposal.”

    Malaysia said the proposal was “heavily one-sided, seeking to reward Israel as the occupier at the expense of occupied Palestine and its people. The proposal is clearly unfair to the Palestinians and will only perpetuate the injustices they have long endured.”

    The statement added, “Malaysia stands by its position that the creation of an independent State of Palestine through the two-State solution, based on the pre-1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine, is the only viable solution to the Palestine-Israel conflict.”

    “Malaysia will continue to support concrete and honest efforts to find a just and lasting solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict based on the international law and relevant United Nations resolutions through negotiations involving the parties concerned.”

    http://english.wafa.ps/page.aspx?id=...BV-xTiK3fbeZGA

    Meanwhile major Arab regimes offer support for the deal.

    Saudi Arabia and other Gulf States to fund US ‘deal of the century’

    Saudi Arabia along with a number of the other Gulf States have pledged to fund US President Donald Trump’s “deal of the century” for the Israel-Palestine conflict, Arabi21.com reported on Monday.

    According to the Hebrew-language Maariv, the deal includes economic aspects that are worth $50 billion. This money is to be used for the development of economic projects in the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, Jordan, Lebanon and Egypt. The newspaper added that Saudi Arabia and other Gulf States have pledged to pay these costs.

    Previously, Saudi Arabia and the UAE had announced their support for the deal, which has been rejected by all Palestinians, including the main Palestinian factions Hamas and Fatah. It is the latter which dominates the Western-backed Palestinian Authority.

    https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20...f-the-century/

    Last edited by Junon; 02-01-2020 at 04:56 PM.

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    A statement of the obvious, now that the game is up, no need for anymore obfuscation and barefaced lies.

    Trump’s Middle East Peace Plan Exposes the Ugly Truth

    This isn’t a break with the status quo. It’s the natural culmination of decades of American policy.


    On Tuesday, President Trump released his long-gestating plan for Middle East peace, the so-called “deal of the century.” It calls for a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza; for Jerusalem, including its Old City, to be the undivided capital of Israel; and for Israel to annex all settlements, as well as the Jordan Valley — which makes up nearly a fourth of the West Bank, including its eastern border with Jordan — creating a discontiguous Palestinian archipelago state, surrounded by a sea of Israeli territory. Mr. Trump announced that the United States will recognize Israeli sovereignty over all the territory the plan assigns to Israel, and shortly after, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel pledged to annex all settlements and the Jordan Valley beginning on Sunday.

    Members of the Israeli right and other opponents of a two-state solution celebrated the deal as the definitive end of the possibility of an independent Palestinian state. The Israeli left, the Palestine Liberation Organization, and other supporters of a two-state solution condemned the plan for the very same reasons, calling it the final nail in the coffin of the two-state solution.

    So there was agreement among both supporters and detractors that the proposal marked a momentous break from decades of American and international policy. But is the plan truly the antithesis of the international community’s longstanding approach to the conflict? Or is it in fact that approach’s logical fulfillment?

    For over a century, the West has supported Zionist aims in Palestine at the expense of the indigenous Palestinian population. In 1917, the British government promised to establish a national home for the Jewish people in Palestine, where Jews made up less than 8 percent of the population. Thirty years later, the United Nations proposed a plan to partition Palestine: The Jews, who made up less than a third of the population and owned less than 7 percent of the land, were given the majority of the territory. During the ensuing war, Israel conquered more than half the territory allotted to the Arab state; four-fifths of the Palestinians who had lived in what became the new boundaries of Israel were prevented from returning to their homes. The international community did not force Israel to return the territory that it had seized, or to permit the return of refugees.

    After the 1967 War, when Israel conquered the remaining 22 percent of Palestine, as well as the Sinai Peninsula from Egypt and the Golan Heights from Syria, Israel illegally established settlements in the territories it occupied and created a regime with separate laws for different groups — Israelis and Palestinians — living in the same territory. In 1980, Israel formally annexed East Jerusalem. As with Israel’s settlement activity, there was some international finger wagging and condemnation, but American financial and military backing for Israel only strengthened.

    In 1993, the Oslo Accords granted limited autonomy to Palestinians in a scattering of disconnected islets. The accords did not demand the dismantling of Israeli settlements or even a halt to settlement growth. The first American plan for Palestinian statehood was presented by President Bill Clinton in 2000. It stated that large Israeli settlements would be annexed to Israel and that all Jewish settlements in occupied East Jerusalem would also be annexed. The Palestinian state would be demilitarized and contain Israeli military installations as well as international forces in the Jordan Valley that could be withdrawn only with Israel’s consent. As with the “deal of the century,” this plan, which formed the basis of all subsequent ones, gave the Palestinians increased autonomy and called it a state.

    There are now more Palestinians than Jews living in the territory under Israel’s control, according to the Israeli military. Whether in Mr. Trump’s vision or Mr. Clinton’s, American plans have confined most of the majority ethnic group into less than a quarter of the territory, with restrictions on Palestinian sovereignty so far-reaching that the outcome should more appropriately be called a one-and-a-half-state solution.

    Mr. Trump’s plan has many severe faults: It prioritizes Jewish interests over Palestinian ones. It rewards and even incentivizes settlements and further dispossession of the Palestinians. But none of these qualities represent a fundamental break from the past. The Trump plan merely puts the finishing touches on a house that American lawmakers, Republican and Democrat alike, spent dozens of years helping to build. During the last several decades, as Israel slowly took over the West Bank, putting more than 600,000 settlers in occupied territory, the United States provided Israel with diplomatic backing, vetoes in the United Nations Security Council, pressure on international courts and investigative bodies not to pursue Israel, and billions of dollars in annual aid.

    Some of the Democrats now running for president have spoken of their disapproval of Israeli annexation, even as they propose nothing to stop it. Thus a mainstream Democrat like Senator Amy Klobuchar could declare her opposition to annexation and sign a letter criticizing the Trump plan for its “disregard [of] international law,” when she had also co-sponsored a Senate resolution “expressing grave objection” to a 2016 United Nations Security Council resolution that demanded Israel halt illegal settlement activity. Other Democrats, such as Senator Elizabeth Warren and Pete Buttigieg, say they would be unwilling to provide American financial support for Israeli annexation. But that is little more than a slick formulation that allows them to sound tough while threatening nothing, since American assistance to Israel would not, in any event, go directly toward the bureaucratic tasks involved, such as transferring the West Bank land registry from the military to the Israeli government.

    Aside from vague references to using aid as a lever, no presidential candidate except Senator Bernie Sanders has put forth proposals that would begin to reduce American complicity in Israel’s violation of Palestinian rights. Declarations of opposition to annexation ring hollow when they are not accompanied by plans to prevent or reverse it: banning settlement products; reducing financial assistance to Israel by the amount it spends in the occupied territories; divesting federal and state pension funds from companies operating in illegal settlements; and suspending military aid until Israel ends the collective punishment of two million people confined in Gaza and provides Palestinians in the West Bank the same civil rights given to Jews living beside them.

    The Trump plan, much like the decades-long peace process that it crowns, gives Israel cover to perpetuate what is known as the status quo: Israel as the sole sovereign controlling the territory between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea, depriving millions of stateless people of basic civil rights, restricting their movement, criminalizing speech that may harm “public order,” jailing them in indefinite “administrative detention” without trial or charge, and dispossessing them of their land — all while congressional leaders, the European Union and much of the rest of the world applaud and encourage this charade, solemnly expressing their commitment to the resumption of “meaningful negotiations.”

    Israel’s defenders like to say that Israel is being singled out, and they are right. Israel is the only state perpetuating a permanent military occupation, with discriminatory laws for separate groups living in the same territory, that self-identified liberals around the world go out of their way to justify, defend and even fund. In the absence of advocating policies with actual teeth, the Democratic critics of the Trump plan are not much better than the president. They are, not in words but in deeds, supporters of annexation and subjugation, too.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/29/o...eace-plan.html

    Last edited by Junon; 01-31-2020 at 11:33 AM.

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    More comment

    I just read the Trump administration’s “Vision” for Palestine….

    Its essence is that the Palestinian people are retarded, but the US and Israel are prepared to usher them into Civilization. The only caveats are:

    (1) Palestinians must forfeit about half the West Bank–this is called a “significant concession” by Israel and “in the spirit of” UN Resolution 242;
    (2) Until they achieve Civilization–as certified by the US and Israel–Palestinians can’t have a “state”; and
    (3) Even were this “state” to eventually materialize, it would not possess any attributes of sovereignty–indeed, Israel would even maintain the right to decide, as in Gaza, whether a “dual-use” item such as cement and medical equipment can be imported by this “state.”

    If this Vision fails to inspire, I would recommend this vision instead.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=odHqG1rA4M8

    If there is a merciful Lord up high in heaven, each and all of the wall’s bricks will come tumbling on the heads of Trump’s vision-makers.

    http://normanfinkelstein.com/2020/01...for-palestine/

    But alas, until and unless Palestinians seize control of their destiny, this vision is as removed from reality as Trump’s.

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    Another update.

    Palestinians cut ties with Israel, U.S. after rejecting peace plan

    The Palestinian Authority has cut all ties with the United States and Israel, including those relating to security, after rejecting a Middle East peace plan presented by U.S. President Donald Trump, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said on Saturday.

    Abbas was in Cairo to address the Arab League, which backed the Palestinians in their opposition to Trump’s plan.

    The blueprint, endorsed by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, calls for the creation of a demilitarised Palestinian state that excludes Jewish settlements built in occupied territory and is under near-total Israeli security control.
    “We’ve informed the Israeli side ... that there will be no relations at all with them and the United States including security ties,” Abbas told the one-day emergency meeting, called to discuss Trump’s plan.

    Israeli officials had no immediate comment on his remarks.

    Israel and the Palestinian Authority’s security forces have long cooperated in policing areas of the occupied West Bank that are under Palestinian control. The PA also has intelligence cooperation agreements with the CIA, which continued even after the Palestinians began boycotting the Trump administration’s peace efforts in 2017.

    Abbas also said he had refused to discuss the plan by with Trump by phone, or to receive even a copy of it to study it.

    “Trump asked that I speak to him by phone but I said ‘no’, and that he wants to send me a letter ... but I refused it,” he said.

    Abbas said he did not want Trump to be able to say that he, Abbas, had been consulted.

    He reiterated his “complete” rejection of the Trump plan, presented on Tuesday. “I will not have it recorded in my history that I sold Jerusalem,” he said.

    https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-is...-idUKKBN1ZV3PM

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'


  16. #592
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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    More comment.

    The apartheid deal of the century

    The Trump “deal of the century” is nothing if not predictable. The product of a small group of Orthodox Jewish Americans willingly adopting the long-standing plans of the Israeli right, it merely reaffirms what Israeli policy has in fact done “on the ground” over the past 53 years. In fact, we in the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD) made a map 15 years ago that corresponds closely to Trump’s map. Once we knew the route of the Separation Wall, the Apartheid Wall, it was easy to draw the map that would eventually emerge.

    Needless to say, the plan is a non-starter. Rather than even a mini-state on 22 per cent of historic Palestine as proposed in the two-state option, the Palestinians – who are both the indigenous and the majority population in the country – will have to do with only 15 per cent of their country, and that truncated into four cantons: three in the West Bank separated by Israeli settlements, and Gaza. The “refugee problem” will be solved by denying them the right to return to their homeland, or to somehow squeeze the 5-6 million strong refugee population to the tiny enclaves of the Palestinian “state”. Few, if any, of the 700,000 Israeli settlers in the OPT will be removed, nor will the matrix of control of massive settlement blocks, highways and military bases be dismantled.

    While Israel expands from 78-85 per cent of the country, the Palestinians are left with a sterile bantustan: no contiguous territory, no border with the Arab states, no control over water or other vital resources, loss of Jerusalem as a religious, cultural and political center, not to mention its loss as a tourist site – economically non-viable patches of barren land, whether you call it a state or a prison.

    Israel, of course, continues to rule the entire country militarily, the Palestinians bereft not only of an armed force but even of the right of defending themselves, any opposition to Israeli repression being characterised by Trump (following Israel) as “terrorism”. He spent a lot of time, as Netanyahu does, condemning Palestinian terrorism and demanding security for Israelis, without mentioning Israeli state terror that has killed, maimed and terrorised the Palestinian public for over five decades. (Israel has, among other crimes, demolished about 130,000 Palestine homes since 1948, 55,000 in the OPT since 1967.) If anything, Trump’s Plan should have guaranteed the Palestinians their security.

    Trump also threatened the Palestinians that if they did not accept his plan in four years, Israel would be allowed to build settlements in the land they would have received.

    One item that was missed because it was raised by Netanyahu and not Trump: before any negotiations, the Palestinians must recognise Israel as a Jewish state, a demand that goes beyond the mere recognition of Israel by Arafat in the Oslo process. This not only prejudices the civil rights of the 25-30 per cent of Israelis who are not Jewish, but forces the Palestinians to legitimise Jewish colonial claims over their country.

    There is one silver thread to Trump’s Plan: it puts to bed once and for all the “two-state solution” that Israel never intended to implement and which it buried under its settlements decades ago. For Zionism never considered itself in a “conflict” with the Palestinians. As the native people, they were irrelevant to the Zionists’ goal of judaising the country, of turning an Arab country into a Jewish one. They had to be displaced or confined or eliminated, but they were not a side” in a “conflict” with national rights equal to those of the Jews.

    Trump’s plan – which is actually Netanyahu’s plan (and agreed upon Gantz and 95 out of the 120 members of Israel’s parliament) – simply recognises the judaisation of Palestine begun 125 years ago, and gives the green light to completing it. Zionism is a settler colonial project. It can only be ended by a process of decolonisation – not merely “ending the occupation”, but ending the colonisation of the entire country and bringing the refugees back home. Transforming the one apartheid state created by Israel and given political legitimisation by Trump into a single democracy of equal rights for all its citizens is the task before us all.

    This is urgent, and it demands Palestinian leadership beyond the bankrupt collaborationist policies of the Palestinian Authority. A new national leadership must emerge, and it must see its critical Israeli allies as crucial to our joint struggle against colonialism. That is what the Trump Plan imparts to us.

    https://zcomm.org/znetarticle/the-ap...f-the-century/

    Last edited by Junon; 02-03-2020 at 11:52 PM.

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    Another update.

    Why is the Palestinian Authority unable to mobilise its people?

    For decades the PA has suppressed Palestinian protests and undermined Palestinian mass mobilisation.


    With the announcement of the Trump administration's "deal of the century" on January 28, the Palestinian Authority (PA) sprung into action. Within hours of the White House ceremony, at which US President Donald Trump released the details of his plan, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said "a thousand no's to the deal of the century".

    The PA then proceeded to issue a number of threats, including once again to sever ties with Israel's security agencies, and a call for mass demonstrations against the proposed deal.

    Despite its rhetorical huffs and puffs, however, the Palestinian leadership could not muster a powerful reaction to the outrageous infringement on Palestinian rights that Trump's proposal really is. It could not even mobilise its own people. Why?

    Because for more than 20 years now the PA has actively participated in the repression of the Palestinian people, while maintaining a close relationship with Israeli security forces. Its attitude, rhetoric, and policies in the past and in the present have always been directed not at protecting the rights and wellbeing of the Palestinian people, but at maintaining power at any cost.

    The "deal of the century" has unmasked the PA's duplicity and the toll it has taken on Palestinian mass mobilisation.

    Repressing Palestinian dissent


    Since its establishment in 1994 as a result of the disastrous Oslo accords, the PA has done little more than help Israel pacify the Palestinians while their land, property, and resources have been taken over by Jewish settlers. To secure its power, the Palestinian leadership has maintained close cooperation with Israel, torturing Palestinian dissidents and providing intelligence on Palestinian activists.

    It has also violently quashed any public protest that threatened its grip on power or has been considered a "threat" by the Israelis. It has repeatedly deployed its national guard, riot police, and thugs loyal to Fatah, the party that dominates the PA, to suppress dissent.

    My first experience of the PA's heavy hand was in 2011 during a demonstration in Ramallah's Manara Square in solidarity with revolutions in neighbouring Arab countries. Hundreds of young people gathered peacefully, chanting political slogans, calling for unity between Fatah and Hamas and against the Oslo order. Within hours we were attacked, harassed, and arrested.

    In 2012, we went out on a protest against the planned visit to Ramallah of Israeli Vice Prime Minister Shaul Mofaz, a man accused of committing countless crimes against the Palestinians, including the massacre in Jenin during the second Intifada and the assassination of various Palestinian leaders.

    We saw his meeting with Abbas as yet another act of PA complicity with Israel's settler-colonial project. We went out en masse to protest, but we were severely beaten by PA police. Later, the PA intelligence followed us, harassed us in the streets, called our families and threatened them. Worse still, we were slandered on social media platforms as "traitors" working for a "foreign agenda" by PA loyalists.

    In 2018, we went out to demonstrate against the complicity of the PA in the Israeli blockade on Gaza, which by now has rendered the strip unliveable. The PA had cut off the salary of employees in Gaza and cancelled medical referrals and financial assistance to hundreds of families in need. Because of their narrow partisan interests, two million Palestinians were suffering in unbearable living conditions. Our protest was again attacked brutally, we were beaten, dragged across the streets of Ramallah and arrested as we sought treatment for our injuries in the hospital.

    These are just a few examples of the PA's systematic campaign to silence and placate the Palestinians in order to provide Israel with a "sense of security". And this is not to say that Hamas is an innocent actor; it too has committed its fair share of repression against the Palestinian population in Gaza and has tried to silence criticism.

    Palestinian leadership no more


    Apart from clamping down on Palestinian dissent, the Palestinian leadership, whether in the West Bank or Gaza, has also sought to instrumentalise mass mobilisation for its short-sighted political goals.

    Every time there is a declaration by an international body which threatens the PA's position as a representative of the Palestinian people (albeit one they have not elected), we witness a series of speeches and statements by Palestinian officials calling for protests.

    The PA and other Palestinian factions and political parties consider Palestinian protest to be a weapon they can use whenever they wish. They want mass mobilisation only when it suits them, not when it is in the best interest of the Palestinian people.

    The problem is that this attitude, along with years of suppression of dissent and harassment of civil society has added another layer of repression - on top of the Israeli occupation - leaving Palestinians disenchanted and damaging their ability to effectively mobilise for their struggle.

    Over the years, many stopped seeing a reason to take to the streets because their protest would either be brutally cracked down on or co-opted by political forces they see as illegitimate.

    It is no wonder then that when the PA called for mass mobilisation in the streets against the "deal of the century", few turned up. Today, the PA is only able to mobilise those loyal to its political structures and its partisan arm - Fatah. To get a crowd in Ramallah, it has to bus people in from outside the city.

    By now, many Palestinians have lost trust in the Palestinian leadership. Many know that the PA's threats to cut ties with Israel's intelligence agencies are empty ones. Last time it did that in 2017, it was found that 95 percent of security coordination with Israel was maintained.

    But despite the political and moral bankruptcy of their leaders, Palestinians have not despaired. They continue their struggle for justice, rights, and the end of the Israeli occupation and apartheid. They continue to mobilise despite their leaders and their complicity with Israel.

    The spirit of the Palestinian street is alive, but it can no longer be conjured by duplicitous political forces. It will only come out in defence of the legitimate struggle of the Palestinian people.

    https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/op...103318259.html

    Edit - Related

    Is the Palestinian Authority on the verge of collapse?

    The ‘deal of the century’ presents an existential crisis for the Palestinian Authority.

    US President Donald Trump's widely rejected Middle East Peace Plan exposed the weaknesses of the Palestinian Authority (PA), an organisation reduced to being Israel's security partner in the occupied territories.

    While the PA President Mahmoud Abbas called for mass protests against the deal in the occupied territories, he has been unable to mobilise Palestinians.

    "The 'deal of the century' has unmasked the PA's duplicity and the toll it has taken on Palestinian mass mobilisation," wrote Mariam Barghouti, a Palestinian-American writer based in Ramallah.

    Barghouti and others argue that the PA has lost its relevance, particularly after Trump's deal, but it can survive as long as Israel and its allies keep it alive to advance their interests.

    "I don't think its collapse is in the interest of Israel and the US and therefore, they will make sure it doesn't collapse, but at the same time, it doesn't have the power to resist their colonialist deal," said Abir Kopty, a Palestinian writer and academic.

    According to Kopty, the PA was created within the framework of the Oslo Accords, signed in the 1990s between the Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO) and Israel, to serve "Israel's interest".

    "The PA has been repressing any dissent, not only against its policies but also against Israel," Kopty told TRT World.

    "The US, Israel and European countries want the PA to continue because for their position it serves their agenda: namely being the policeman of the occupation," says Antony Loewenstein, an independent, Jerusalem-based journalist and author.

    "This happens 20 years or so after Oslo. The PA has been willing to be Israel's policeman across the West Bank, suppressing opposition. It runs a police state. That's the reality of what the PA is. There have been no elections for many years," Loewenstein concludes.

    https://www.trtworld.com/magazine/is...collapse-33550
    Last edited by Junon; 02-07-2020 at 11:45 AM.

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    At least they are honest.



    Last edited by Junon; 02-14-2020 at 01:29 PM.

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    Another update.

    Saudi Arabia detains more Palestinians in latest arrest campaign

    The arrests come a year since the Gulf kingdom first started cracking down on Palestinian residents with alleged or confirmed ties to the Hamas movement


    Saudi security forces have launched a new wave of arrests of Palestinians living in the Gulf kingdom, sources told Middle East Eye.

    Sources in the Palestinian community in Saudi Arabia said Saudi authorities had arrested dozens of people since 10 February, the majority being children and relatives of those arrested in earlier waves of arrests since February 2019.

    On 12 February, Prisoners of Conscience - a group which denounces Saudi incarceration of individuals for political reasons - was the first to report on social media the latest arrests.

    A Palestinian citizen living in the Saudi city of Jeddah told MEE on condition of anonymity that Palestinians were currently living in a state of anxiety and terror in the Gulf country.

    "Everyone has become concerned that the arrest campaign will target them, in light of a situation of extreme incitement against Palestinians, which has escalated since the appointment of Prince Mohammed bin Salman as crown prince," she said.

    Since its inception more than 30 years ago, Hamas has been keen to preserve a balanced relationship with Saudi Arabia despite the two sides’ differing policies on various issues over the past decade - but bin Salman’s rise as crown prince has been accompanied by unprecedented Saudi overtures to Israel.

    The woman added that she knew a number of Palestinians who had left Saudi soil before the first arrests campaign in anticipation of the changing atmosphere in the country. She added that others, fearing arrest, have since left the country illegally through the land border with Yemen, and settled in other countries.

    While the Geneva based Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor has reported that some 60 Palestinians have been detained by Saudi Arabia in the past year, others estimate that the number is much higher.

    Saudi Arabia detained a dozen Palestinians in February 2019, before launching another campaign in April which saw dozens of Palestinian businessmen, academics and students arrested.

    An official source from the Hamas movement in the besieged Gaza Strip, who requested not to be identified, stressed that the majority of the detainees were Hamas members.

    The official said those arrested had resided in Saudi Arabia for decades, arguing their detentions were unjustified and accusing Saudi Arabia of “now targeting everyone who is linked with resistance” against the Israeli occupation.

    Court hearing

    In September, Hamas revealed in an official statement that one of the most prominent detainees was veteran Hamas middleman Mohammed Saleh al-Khoudary, 82, who had been responsible for managing the relationship with Saudi Arabia for two decades.

    Hamas spokesman in Gaza, Hazem Qassem, said the Palestinian movement had contacted several unspecified parties and diplomatic contacts over the past few months in order to resolve the situation, to no avail.

    The new arrests coincide with news that Khoudary and his eldest son, Hani Khoudary, would be among 14 other prisoners to stand in front of the Riyadh criminal court next month.

    Khoudary's brother Abdul Majid, who lives in Gaza, said that his brother and nephew's lawyer had yet to be informed of what charges were being levied against them, adding that the indictment would only be announced on the first day of the trial.

    Abdul Majid Khoudary said his brother had been in Saudi Arabia for three decades serving as an “ambassador of Hamas” with a close relationship to Saudi authorities, adding that his sons were born in the country.

    He expressed concern that his brother has been held in solitary confinement in Dhahban prison for some three months, only being allowed a family visit for the first time in July for only an hour.

    “He does not deserve to end his life in this humiliating way,” Abdul Majid told MEE.

    According to Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor, Saudi Arabia holds thousands of prisoners, including many on political grounds, in Dhahban, where human rights activists say many detainees are subjected to torture, humiliation and abuse.

    https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/s...rrest-campaign

    Related

    Egypt building new wall along Gaza border

    The new construction, both above and below ground, is being carried out with Hamas consent to stem the use of cross-border tunnels with the blockaded strip


    Egyptian security and military forces are working around the clock to build a new concrete wall on the Egyptian side of the border with the besieged Gaza Strip which they aim to have completed by mid-2020, Palestinian sources told Middle East Eye.

    Egypt embarked on the first stage of construction on 27 January in the area extending from the Karm Abu Salem commercial crossing to the Rafah crossing. The wall is set to extend along two kilometres in its first stage, and stand six metres tall above ground and five metres deep below it.

    Security expert in the Hamas-run Gaza Interior Ministry Muhammad Abu Harbeed said that the Palestinian leadership in Gaza understood Egyptian security needs, adding that the construction of the new wall enhanced the "security interests" of both sides.

    But the move has not been welcomed by all in the besieged Palestinian territory, where some view the timing of the construction as suspicious given the recent unveiling of a US plan for Israel and Palestine that has been categorically rejected by the Palestinian leadership in the Gaza Strip and elsewhere.

    https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/e...ng-gaza-border

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    Another update.





    HSBC blocks payments to Palestinian relief charity Interpal

    Interpal has condemned HSBC bank for blocking standing order payments to the charity “in the middle of a deadly pandemic and in the month of Ramadan.”

    The charity, which provides relief to needy Palestinians, said that HSBC’s decision was “immoral and harmful to poor people at their most vulnerable,” and that the “management at HSBC should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves for collaborating in this dishonourable practice.”

    Interpal made the statement after a donor, Shiplu Miah, posted a letter on social media that he had received this month from HSBC. We understand that similar letters have been sent out to other HSBC customers who are donors to Interpal.
    “We’re writing to let you know that from the 17th of May 2020 we’re no longer going to process standing order payments to the UK charity Interpal (the working name for the Palestinian Relief and Development Fund),” the letter read.

    “As part of a global bank sometimes we may decide to prevent certain transactions even if they are allowed under local laws. We recognise you may be disappointed with this decision and we’re sorry for any inconvenience it may cause.”

    Over the years Interpal has been repeatedly targeted by the pro-Israel and other media over terrorism accusations which have proven to be false.

    In 2003 the U.S. Department of Treasury designated Interpal as a “Specially Designated Global Terrorist Organization” without providing any legal evidence. Interpal says the designation is a nonsense and continues to operate legally as a charity in the UK after the authorities cleared it of any wrongdoing.

    However, it is believed that the U.S. designation has caused several banks to stop providing services for Interpal.

    HSBC shut down the bank accounts of two other Muslim charities – Islamic Relief and Ummah Welfare Trust – in 2014; as well as the prominent Muslim activists Anas Altikriti and Azzam Tamimi.

    Responding to HSBC’s decision, Interpal said: “HSBC has not specified why this decision has been taken, although it does point out, and rightly so, that donations to Interpal do not contravene ‘local’ — British — law. This is more than disappointing for us, our donors and indeed our beneficiaries in the field given that HSBC has chosen the middle of a deadly pandemic and the month of Ramadan to block these payments.

    “It is a time when British Muslim communities are at their most generous and ready to help people in desperate need who need even more support due to the coronavirus, COVID-19. It is a disgrace that a major bank should take such a decision at this time.

    “Interpal is a UK-registered charity which cooperates fully with the authorities at home and within its areas of operation; allegations of wrongdoing have been shown to be false following several independent investigations. The Trustees and dedicated staff of Interpal are extremely disappointed that a legitimate British charity is denied vital services to appease those who act on behalf of an alien state to prevent humanitarian aid getting to the Palestinians.

    “Such efforts to politicise the charity sector are immoral and harmful to poor people at their most vulnerable. The management at HSBC should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves for collaborating in this dishonourable practice.

    “Over the course of the past 25 years, Interpal has upheld the highest ethical standards in its humanitarian endeavours and complied fully with local and international law. Staff in the UK and overseas continue to work at full capacity to ensure that donations reach vulnerable families across our areas of operation whilst we adapt to the changes necessary to continue with our work and address ongoing campaigns attempting to block aid from reaching Palestinians in need.

    “We call upon our donors and supporters to stand with us at this time and make every effort to ensure that attempts to damage the charity and harm our brothers and sisters in occupied Palestine and beyond do not succeed.”

    For anyone wishing to switch their standing order to an alternative method of payment, you may call Interpal’s Donor Care Team on: 0208 961 9993 or email: [email protected].

    https://5pillarsuk.com/2020/04/27/hs...rity-interpal/

    In more hopeful news.

    Last edited by Junon; 05-03-2020 at 07:58 AM.

  22. #597
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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    Another update

    Israeli officials confirm Palestinian Authority is ending security coordination

    After years of threats, sources say this time Abbas has truly halted cooperation, in protest of new government’s plans to annex West Bank areas


    Israeli sources confirmed Thursday that the Palestinian Authority is making good on its threat to end security coordination with Israel over the new Israeli government’s plans to annex parts of the West Bank.

    In addition to security and intelligence cooperation between the Israeli military and Palestinian security forces, civil ties between Israel and the PA were also set to cease.

    Defense officials warned that the halting of cooperation between Israel and the PA could lead to rising violence, with more clashes between Israeli troops and Palestinians.

    The severing of the agreements came after PA President Mahmoud Abbas announced Tuesday the Palestinians were no longer bound by agreements with Israel and the US, citing the new government’s plan to move forward with annexation of West Bank settlements and the Jordan Valley as early as July 1.

    For years, Abbas has made similar threats on numerous occasions to end security ties with Israel and dissolve the PA, but never followed through.

    Hours before the move was confirmed by Israeli sources, PA Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh met Thursday with the heads of Palestinian security forces to discuss ending the coordination with Israel.

    “Israel’s annexation of any parts of the West Bank constitutes an existential threat to the Palestinian national project and an end to the two-state solution,” he said, according to the PA’s official Wafa news agency.

    Shtayyeh charged that Israel “breached international law and violated all the agreements signed with us” and therefore “we will no longer abide by these agreements.”

    According to the Haaretz daily, Palestinian security forces had withdrawn from the West Bank’s Areas B and C to Area A, which is under full PA control.

    Area B is under Israeli security control, with certain exceptions where Palestinians maintain limited security control, while Area C is fully administered by Israel.

    Citing Palestinian sources, the newspaper said Israel has been updated about the development and the retreat largely affects the Palestinian civilian populations in Areas B and C.

    The report was not immediately confirmed by Israel.

    A video shared by the PA-ruling Fatah movement on social media Thursday claimed to show Palestinian security forces preventing Israeli soldiers from entering Hebron.

    Also Thursday, a senior Palestinian official announced the PA’s security services will stop sharing information with the US Central Intelligence Agency.

    The PA government cut all ties with the Trump administration in 2017, accusing the US president of pro-Israel bias for recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

    US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who previously served as CIA chief, said Wednesday he hoped security cooperation would continue.

    The decision to also end security ties with the US was in protest of the administration’s endorsing of Israeli annexation in parts of the West Bank within the framework of its peace plan.

    Those areas include Israeli settlements and the Jordan Valley — a key strategic area that makes up around a third of the West Bank.

    Palestinians say the US plan ends prospects for a two-state solution to their decades-long conflict with Israel.

    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s vow to go through with annexation has led to condemnations from a growing list on countries, including Arab states such as Jordan and European nations like France and Germany.

    https://www.timesofisrael.com/israel...-coordination/

    Is Israel a racist and criminal endeavour? with Norman Finkelstein, TSBC



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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    Another update.




  24. #599
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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    like to share

    Blurb

    Hundreds of people have demonstrated in occupied East Jerusalem against the killing of Iyad Halak, a Palestinian man with autism who was shot dead by Israeli police officers. Palestinians draw parallels between Halak’s death and the killing of George Floyd in the US



    Hah!.

    Last edited by Junon; 3 Weeks Ago at 05:19 PM.

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    Another update.



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