ISR141112JB005By Asma’ Jawabreh 

RAMMALAH – Almost 13 years after Hamas took control of the Gaza Strip and Fatah retained power in the West Bank, inaugurating a bitter division in Palestinian politics, President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have managed to unite the two rivals. 

Both Fatah and Hamas bitterly oppose Trump and Netanyahu’s proposed peace deal, saying it does little to nothing for their beleaguered people.

“This is not a deal. It is a deceptive plan ignoring the international laws and accords aiming to expand the Israeli settlements,” said Fatah spokesman Osama Al-Qawasmi. “It is an apartheid policy against the Palestinians.”
Under the plan Israel would assume control of the Jordan Valley along Israel’s eastern border and gain sovereignty over Jewish settlements in the West Bank. But Israel would also cede a large swatch of territory near the Egyptian border to Palestine. A tunnel would link the Gaza Strip and West Bank, which are now separated. Palestine would receive $50 billion in economic development aid but give up its right to have a military.
Fatah was prepared to oppose the deal with any legal and peaceful means necessary, said Al-Qawasmi.
Hamas spokesman Abdul Latif Al-Qanouh agreed that the deal must be oppossed. But he said the peace plan was proof that the Fatah-controlled Palestinian Authority should stop coordinating with the Israeli military, withdraw recognition of Israel and take up arms against the occupying power – demands that Hamas has been making on the authority for years.
“Palestinian armed resistance and Palestinian unity are the main sole ways to confront this dangerous deal,” Al-Qanouh said.
Ordinary Palestinians were similarly unified in their felt dislike of the deal but torn on how to respond.
“Armed resistance is the sole way to stop this deal from being implemented on the ground,” said Sundus Al-Farajah, 20, from Bethlehem. “We have nothing to lose. We do not have any control over our lives as Israel controls everything. Armed resistance cannot make our lives worse than what it is now.” 
Bilal Muhna, a 29-years-old Gaza resident, said the deal would make it impossible for him to ever receive compensation for an Israeli strike that destroyed his house in 2014. “The entire plan aims to give Israel the green light to continue its policy against the Palestinians,” he said.
But he added that “protest, peaceful resistance without any use of weapons or violence is the only way to react against this deal in every areas in Palestine.” 
Many Palestinians felt the deal merely solidified Israeli acquisitions of Palestinian lands over the years, including Jewish settlements. As part of the deal, the US would recognize those settlements, but the international community largely remains otherwise unified in condemning them as illegal seizures of territory.
“This deal gives the rest of the Palestinian lands to the Israelis who occupy and confiscate more Palestinian lands, while giving the Palestinians nothing rather than dehumanization at the Israeli checkpoints,” said Suha Hroub, 32, who lives in Ramallah, referring to security measures between Palestinian and Israeli land.
Layla Ayyad, 26, from Abu Dis, said the deal is less a vision for change than a mechanism for solidifying the status quo. In that sense, she argued, the plan at least a starting point that reflects the truth on the ground. “Trump described the real borders and territories of the Palestinian and Israelis,” she said. “There is nothing surprising in this deal. Everything is reflected on the ground. What Trump does is, he is giving the green light and legal rights to recognize the reality.”
Some felt as if the proposal might at least change the dynamics that have dominated the region.
Mohammad Jaber from Hebron, 43-years old, a real estate broker from Hebron, considered the deal an opportunity. “The Palestinian authority adopts negotiation and peace talks with Israelis, and this deal is a result of this policy,” he said. “This deal cannot be worse than Oslo [peace accords of the 1990s.] Every time we reject something, we lose more; people, houses, lands, and rights.” 
University of Gaza Political Scientist Adnan Abu Amer feared the plan would occur whether or not the Palestinians welcomed it. The plan’s naysayers needed to launch an effective campaign to stop it, he said.
“A miracle should happen to stop this deal, such as Netanyahu loses the election, huge changes among the Arab leaders to support the Palestinians, or a remarkable armed resistance and operations against the Israelis,” he said. “Otherwise, the deal will be implemented on the ground sooner or later.”

Photo: The Temple Mount – Haram al-Sharif to Muslims – in Jerusalem is at the center of an intense debate over messianic religious Zionism in Israeli politics and society, and what it means for the future of the peace process.
Credit: Jabeen Bhatti/ARA Network Inc. (11/12/14)

Story/photo published date: 02/02/20

RAMMALAH – Almost 13 years after Hamas took control of the Gaza Strip and Fatah retained power in the West Bank, inaugurating a bitter division in Palestinian politics, President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have managed to unite the two rivals.

Both Fatah and Hamas bitterly oppose Trump and Netanyahu’s proposed peace deal, saying it does little to nothing for their beleaguered people.

“This is not a deal. It is a deceptive plan ignoring the international laws and accords aiming to expand the Israeli settlements,” said Fatah spokesman Osama Al-Qawasmi. “It is an apartheid policy against the Palestinians.”

Under the plan Israel would assume control of the Jordan Valley along Israel’s eastern border and gain sovereignty over Jewish settlements in the West Bank. But Israel would also cede a large swatch of territory near the Egyptian border to Palestine. A tunnel would link the Gaza Strip and West Bank, which are now separated. Palestine would receive $50 billion in economic development aid but give up its right to have a military.

Fatah was prepared to oppose the deal with any legal and peaceful means necessary, said Al-Qawasmi.

Hamas spokesman Abdul Latif Al-Qanouh agreed that the deal must be oppossed. But he said the peace plan was proof that the Fatah-controlled Palestinian Authority should stop coordinating with the Israeli military, withdraw recognition of Israel and take up arms against the occupying power – demands that Hamas has been making on the authority for years.

“Palestinian armed resistance and Palestinian unity are the main sole ways to confront this dangerous deal,” Al-Qanouh said.

Ordinary Palestinians were similarly unified in their felt dislike of the deal but torn on how to respond.

“Armed resistance is the sole way to stop this deal from being implemented on the ground,” said Sundus Al-Farajah, 20, from Bethlehem. “We have nothing to lose. We do not have any control over our lives as Israel controls everything. Armed resistance cannot make our lives worse than what it is now.”

 

 

Bilal Muhna, a 29-years-old Gaza resident, said the deal would make it impossible for him to ever receive compensation for an Israeli strike that destroyed his house in 2014. “The entire plan aims to give Israel the green light to continue its policy against the Palestinians,” he said.

But he added that “protest, peaceful resistance without any use of weapons or violence is the only way to react against this deal in every areas in Palestine.”

Many Palestinians felt the deal merely solidified Israeli acquisitions of Palestinian lands over the years, including Jewish settlements. As part of the deal, the US would recognize those settlements, but the international community largely remains otherwise unified in condemning them as illegal seizures of territory.

“This deal gives the rest of the Palestinian lands to the Israelis who occupy and confiscate more Palestinian lands, while giving the Palestinians nothing rather than dehumanization at the Israeli checkpoints,” said Suha Hroub, 32, who lives in Ramallah, referring to security measures between Palestinian and Israeli land.

Layla Ayyad, 26, from Abu Dis, said the deal is less a vision for change than a mechanism for solidifying the status quo. In that sense, she argued, the plan at least a starting point that reflects the truth on the ground. “Trump described the real borders and territories of the Palestinian and Israelis,” she said. “There is nothing surprising in this deal. Everything is reflected on the ground. What Trump does is, he is giving the green light and legal rights to recognize the reality.”

Some felt as if the proposal might at least change the dynamics that have dominated the region.

Mohammad Jaber from Hebron, 43-years old, a real estate broker from Hebron, considered the deal an opportunity. “The Palestinian authority adopts negotiation and peace talks with Israelis, and this deal is a result of this policy,” he said. “This deal cannot be worse than Oslo [peace accords of the 1990s.] Every time we reject something, we lose more; people, houses, lands, and rights.”

University of Gaza Political Scientist Adnan Abu Amer feared the plan would occur whether or not the Palestinians welcomed it. The plan’s naysayers needed to launch an effective campaign to stop it, he said.

“A miracle should happen to stop this deal, such as Netanyahu loses the election, huge changes among the Arab leaders to support the Palestinians, or a remarkable armed resistance and operations against the Israelis,” he said. “Otherwise, the deal will be implemented on the ground sooner or later.”

b_179_129_16777215_00_images_RWA161616aa001.jpegKIGALI, Rwanda — Raking through the knee-high grass on his tea farm to clear fallen tree branches, Ezekiel Shinga marvels at how life has changed in his country in the 22 years after the genocide that made this tiny east African county a watchword for horror and brutality around the world.

“I think no one could have predicted the strides Rwanda has made in the past two decades,” said Mr. Shinga, whose farm is in the southern district of Nyaruguru. “Everything in this country has changed. People own businesses, and the majority here are tea farmers. At least everyone has income. There’s peace, and neighbors now love each other.”

Read more at The Washington Times

b_179_129_16777215_00_images_USAObama130222AA001.jpegATHENS — President Obama called for a "course correction" for the global economy Wednesday in an effort to stave off the nationalist impulses being felt in the United States and Europe.

In an address to the Greek people, Obama said growing distrust of elites and institutions demands that democratic governments work to become more responsive to the people they serve.

Read more at USA Today

b_179_129_16777215_00_images_ISR150318aa001.jpegJERUSALEM — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's ruling Likud Party swept to a decisive victory results showed Wednesday in a general election that exposed Israel's rifts at home and abroad, including with the White House.

With the majority of votes counted, Likud won 30 of the 120 seats in the country's Knesset, or parliament. The center-left opposition Zionist Union party led by Isaac Herzog won 24 seats. Israel's Election Committee is expected to confirm the results Thursday.

Read more at USA Today

aranetwork news

JERUSALEM — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's ruling Likud Party swept to a decisive victory results showed Wednesday in a general election that exposed Israel's rifts at home and abroad, including with the White House.

With the majority of votes counted, Likud won 30 of the 120 seats in the country's Knesset, or parliament. The center-left opposition Zionist Union party led by Isaac Herzog won 24 seats. Israel's Election Committee is expected to confirm the results Thursday.

Read more at USA Today
b_179_129_16777215_00_images_111111.jpegGAZA CITY — As the Palestinian death toll rose, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed Friday to continue to target members of Hamas with air strikes in Gaza until rockets the militant group has been firing into Israel from the southern border halt.

"I will end it when our goals are realized. And the overriding goal is to restore the peace and quiet," Netanyahu said at a news conference.

Read more at USA Today

b_179_129_16777215_00_images_5410433581_8ae746d004.jpegBAGHDAD — Islamic militants Tuesday attacked areas in central Baqouba, a city just 30 miles northeast of Iraq's capital Baghdad, but were pushed back by security forces and tribal fighters.

In one incident, at least 44 Sunni prisoners died in an apparent foiled rescue attempt by Sunni Muslim militants from the al-Qaeda breakaway group known as Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant — referred to as ISIL or ISIS. The Levant is a traditional name for the region including Iraq and greater Syria.

Read more at USA Today

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ABUJA, Nigeria — Frustration and despair over the fate of hundreds of schoolgirls kidnapped by Islamic extremists in northern Nigeria is forcing families to organize the rescue themselves.

"We are trying to search for our daughters on our own," said a mother of one of the girls, asking to remain unidentified out of fear of causing her daughter further harm. "Soon we will be heading to the forest.

Read more at USA Today

b_179_129_16777215_00_images_EGY130705aa003.jpegCAIRO - Violence persisted at Egypt’s universities this week as part of a broader conflict between authorities and student protesters that underscores rights’ activists concerns about obstacles facing independence of the nation’s universities.

On Wednesday, three blasts erupted outside Cairo University, apparently targeting riot police deployed to deal with protests staged almost daily by students. A senior police officer was killed and five others were wounded, Egypt’s state news agency reported. The protest movement Students Against the Coup distanced itself from the attack, cancelling a protest planned for midday at Cairo University. But the incident underscores wider anger at a security crackdown on government opposition.

Read more at Al-Fanar Media

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Following the October 3 deaths of around 400 migrants off the Italian island of Lampedusa, European leaders meeting in Brussels on Thursday have promised to put immigration on the agenda alongside scheduled discussions on growth, competitiveness and fighting unemployment. But as long they hold to the illusion that interests of migrants are at odds with those of "native" workers, their policies will continue to put lives at risk – and will do nothing to help the EU economy.

Over the past decade, Europe has invested more and more money on keeping non-Europeans out. Frontex, created in 2005 to police Europe’s external borders, saw its budget balloon from €19 million in 2006 to €85 million in 2012. But analysts say this approach does little to reduce overall immigration figures and merely plays into the hands of those ready to exploit irregular immigration, from people-smugglers to unscrupulous employers.

Read more at Occupy.com

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ATHENS - In crisis-ridden Greece, a network of volunteer-run crisis clinics is providing citizens with the medical care denied them by the state. 

Read more at Deutsche Welle

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Whether by a harrowing boat trip across the Mediterranean, a mountain crossing over the Turkish border or a flight to Germany, more than 2 million Syrians have fled their war-torn country to take refuge in Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Egypt and Iraq as well as in the Gulf countries and in Europe.

Two million people have fled the war as of September, says the United Nations. Those who got away from the 30-month-old conflict share horror stories of snipers and aerial bombardment, of murdered loved ones and wounded friends. The problems they face in their new homes varies tremendously depending on the country.

Read more at USA Today

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NEW DELHI — Eight young women dressed in red tunics and black scarves make their way along a narrow lane in Lucknow's Madiyav slum in northern India as young men move quickly out of their way, avoiding their eyes.

The girls reach a house at the corner of the lane: Two go in and emerge with a young man. Preeti Verma, 17, has a hand around his neck and pushes him toward the girls who then pummel him with slippers and their fists. No onlookers intervene.

Read more at USA Today

b_179_129_16777215_00_images_DEU130629aa001.jpegBERLIN - Germany takes in more refugees than any other rich country. But that does not mean it is easy for the hundreds of thousands of refugees stuck in limbo.

One year and eight months since Chima Oxumbor arrived at Düsseldorf's police station to appeal for asylum, he has a €1-an-hour (85p-an-hour) job cleaning the toilets and floors at the camp where he shares a room with four or five other people. His life in Germany is not what he expected.

Read more at The Guardian

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