$50,000 payments help grieving Gaza families end blood feuds

Friday, 20 October 2017

As the rival Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas move to reconcile, families of loved ones killed in Gaza’s civil war a decade ago are also learning to get along. With the backing of an exiled former Palestinian security chief, grieving families are agreeing to drop their 10-year-old blood feuds in exchange for $50,000 payments. The idea is to help Gaza move beyond one of its darkest chapters - the weeklong round of internecine fighting that ended with Hamas’ takeover of the ...

VIDEO: Israeli MP walks out after Kuwait’s speaker slams his remarks

Thursday, 19 October 2017

An Israeli member or parliament walked out of an international conference held in Russia after Kuwait's chief lawmaker slammed his comments on imprisoned Palestinian lawmakers at an international conference on Wednesday. “The saying ‘if you have no shame do as you please’ applies to the comments made by this rapist (Israeli) parliament,” National Assembly Speaker Marzouq al-Ghanim told lawmakers gathered at Inter-Parliamentary Union talks, Kuwait’s news agency, KUNA ...

Hamas calls US comments on unity deal ‘blatant interference’

Thursday, 19 October 2017

Islamist movement Hamas accused the United States of “blatant interference” in Palestinian affairs Thursday after US President Donald Trump’s envoy demanded they disarm and recognise Israel in any unity government. “This is blatant interference in Palestinian affairs because it is the right of our people to choose its government according to their supreme strategic interests,” senior Hamas official Bassem Naim told AFP. He accused Jason Greenblatt, Trump’s ...

Saudi Arabia: Iran has used lifting of sanctions to destabilize the region

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

The Political Coordinator of the Saudi Mission in the United Nations, spokeswoman Manal Hassan Radwan, in her speech on Wednesday, during a meeting of the Security Council on the Middle East that Iran has taken advantage of lifting sanctions to destabilize the region. Saudi Arabia’s delegate at the United Nations also spoke on the kingdom's position on Palestine, Syria and Trump’s recent decision on the Iranian nuclear deal. On Palestine, Saudi Arabia said that Israeli ...

EU calls on Israel to stop plans for new West Bank settlements

Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Israel must halt new building plans for settler homes in the West Bank, the European Union’s foreign service said in a statement on Wednesday, warning that such settlements threatened any future peace deal with the Palestinians. “The European Union has requested clarifications from Israeli authorities and conveyed the expectation that they reconsider these decisions, which are detrimental to on-going efforts towards meaningful peace talks,” the statement said. ...

Hamas says unity deal at risk if Abbas does not end sanctions

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Hamas warned on Tuesday that Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas’s delay in easing sanctions on Gaza was putting at risk a landmark unity deal signed last week.“The continuation of the punitive measures against our people in Gaza a month after the dissolution of the administrative council spoils the general atmosphere for reconciliation,” a party spokesman said in a statement to Hamas media.Islamist group Hamas last month agreed to dissolve its administrative council, seen as a ...

Gaza Instagram stars want world to get the picture

Monday, 16 October 2017

They may not be able to leave Gaza without Israeli or Egyptian permission, but their photos can.The two women are among a small number of Instagram stars in the blockaded Palestinian enclave, showing followers a different side of their homeland from what much of the world may be used to hearing or seeing.“I see Instagram as a window,” says Kholoud Nassar, 26, wearing a pink hijab and fiddling with a toy car that features in many of her pictures.Fatma Mosabah, 21, agrees, saying that ...

Israel approves Hebron settlement plans for first time since 2002

Monday, 16 October 2017

Israeli authorities on Monday approved permits for 31 settler homes in Hebron in the occupied West Bank, the first such approvals for the flashpoint city since 2002, the Peace Now NGO said.An Israeli committee approved construction permits for the 31 units, Anat Ben Nun of Peace Now told AFP. Several hundred Israeli settlers live in the heart of Hebron under heavy military guard among some 200,000 Palestinians.The approvals are among some 4,000 settler home plans to be advanced as part of a push ...

US to follow up on Gaza situation following Hamas, Fatah reconciliation

Friday, 13 October 2017

The US Department of State said it will closely follow up on the humanitarian situation in Gaza after rival Palestinian factions Hamas and Fatah signed a reconciliation deal on Thursday. A US Department of State spokesperson welcomed the Palestinian authority’s efforts to assume administrative responsibilities in Gaza and said the deal is an important step that will help deliver humanitarian aid to residents in Gaza. According to the deal brokered by Egypt, Hamas and Fatah will complete ...

US to pull out of UNESCO amid Palestinian tensions

Thursday, 12 October 2017

US officials have told The Associated Press that the United States is pulling out of UNESCO, after repeated criticism of resolutions by the UN cultural agency that Washington sees as anti-Israel.  UNESCO head said it has had official notification from US that it was withdrawing from UNESCO. The organization said the United States’ decision to withdraw from UNESCO represents a loss to the “United Nations family” and to multilateralism. While the US stopped funding UNESCO ...

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