UN: Israeli demolitions of Palestinian homes reach record high

Israel demolished more Palestinian homes in the occupied territory in 2016 than in any year since the United Nations began documenting demolitions in 2009, while Israel also increased restrictions on the movement of Palestinians in the occupied territory in 2016. The unprecedented demolition campaign left some 1,593 Palestinians homeless and affected the livelihoods of another 7,101, according to preliminary analysis of data collected by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). The UN agency’s documentation encompassed the occupied West Bank as well as East Jerusalem, where Israeli authorities demolished or seized 1,089 Palestinian-owned structures since the beginning of 2016 until 28 December. The “vast majority” of the Palestinian structures were destroyed or seized for lacking Israeli-issued […]

UN: Israeli demolitions of Palestinian homes reach record high

Israel demolished more Palestinian homes in the occupied territory in 2016 than in any year since the United Nations began documenting demolitions in 2009, while Israel also increased restrictions on the movement of Palestinians in the occupied territory in 2016. The unprecedented demolition campaign left some 1,593 Palestinians homeless and affected the livelihoods of another 7,101, according to preliminary analysis of data collected by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). The UN agency’s documentation encompassed the occupied West Bank as well as East Jerusalem, where Israeli authorities demolished or seized 1,089 Palestinian-owned structures since the beginning of 2016 until 28 December. The “vast majority” of the Palestinian structures were destroyed or seized for lacking Israeli-issued […]

Iraqi forces launch second phase of Mosul offensive against Daesh

Iraqi security forces on Thursday began the second phase of their offensive against Daesh militants in Mosul, pushing from three directions into eastern districts where the battle has been deadlocked for nearly a month. Since the offensive to capture Mosul began 10 weeks ago, US-backed forces have retaken a quarter of the jihadists’ last major stronghold in Iraq in the biggest ground operation there since the 2003 US-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein. More than 5,000 soldiers and federal police troops, redeployed from Mosul’s southern outskirts, entered half a dozen southeastern districts, while counter-terrorism forces advanced in al-Quds and Karama districts after reinforcements arrived. Other soldiers pushed simultaneously towards the city’s northern limits. US military advisers were seen watching operations […]

Iraqi forces launch second phase of Mosul offensive against Daesh

Iraqi security forces on Thursday began the second phase of their offensive against Daesh militants in Mosul, pushing from three directions into eastern districts where the battle has been deadlocked for nearly a month. Since the offensive to capture Mosul began 10 weeks ago, US-backed forces have retaken a quarter of the jihadists’ last major stronghold in Iraq in the biggest ground operation there since the 2003 US-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein. More than 5,000 soldiers and federal police troops, redeployed from Mosul’s southern outskirts, entered half a dozen southeastern districts, while counter-terrorism forces advanced in al-Quds and Karama districts after reinforcements arrived. Other soldiers pushed simultaneously towards the city’s northern limits. US military advisers were seen watching operations […]

Mufti of Jerusalem slams Israel’s policy of ‘Judaisation’

Israeli authorities are going “too far” with excavation and construction activities in the Old City of occupied East Jerusalem, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem and Palestine Sheikh Mohammed Hussein warned yesterday. In a statement, Hussein warned that the digging endangered the lives and properties of Jerusalemites. He added that Israel was violating international law regarding the state’s responsibility towards civilians in the territory it militarily occupies, and he called upon international organisations to intervene to stop the measures “before it’s too late”. He also denounced Israel for imposing Jewish holidays on Palestinian schools in Jerusalem, saying that the policy aimed to “Judaise” the educational system in Jerusalem. In addition to this, replacing the names of streets and areas in the […]

Mufti of Jerusalem slams Israel’s policy of ‘Judaisation’

Israeli authorities are going “too far” with excavation and construction activities in the Old City of occupied East Jerusalem, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem and Palestine Sheikh Mohammed Hussein warned yesterday. In a statement, Hussein warned that the digging endangered the lives and properties of Jerusalemites. He added that Israel was violating international law regarding the state’s responsibility towards civilians in the territory it militarily occupies, and he called upon international organisations to intervene to stop the measures “before it’s too late”. He also denounced Israel for imposing Jewish holidays on Palestinian schools in Jerusalem, saying that the policy aimed to “Judaise” the educational system in Jerusalem. In addition to this, replacing the names of streets and areas in the […]

Jordan, PA conduct trade directly without Israeli intervention

The first shipment of vegetable crossed from Jordan directly to the occupied West Bank yesterday through the Allenby Bridge crossing, “without any Israeli intervention”, according to Palestinian Minister of Agriculture Sufiyan Sultan. Sultan told Ma’an that the Palestinian Authority (PA)’s Ministry of Agriculture recently signed an agreement with Israel to allow the import of agricultural and animal products from Jordan by Palestinians merchants, as opposed to the previous practice of being conducted through Israeli merchants. Sultan said that Israeli merchants would buy products from Jordan, transport the goods to the occupied West Bank, where Palestinian merchants would then buy them. He added that meetings will soon be held with the Jordanian minister of agriculture to sign an agreement of agricultural […]

Jordan, PA conduct trade directly without Israeli intervention

The first shipment of vegetable crossed from Jordan directly to the occupied West Bank yesterday through the Allenby Bridge crossing, “without any Israeli intervention”, according to Palestinian Minister of Agriculture Sufiyan Sultan. Sultan told Ma’an that the Palestinian Authority (PA)’s Ministry of Agriculture recently signed an agreement with Israel to allow the import of agricultural and animal products from Jordan by Palestinians merchants, as opposed to the previous practice of being conducted through Israeli merchants. Sultan said that Israeli merchants would buy products from Jordan, transport the goods to the occupied West Bank, where Palestinian merchants would then buy them. He added that meetings will soon be held with the Jordanian minister of agriculture to sign an agreement of agricultural […]

Algeria to host Libya peace talks

Algeria will host a meeting of rival Libyan parties including Prime Minister Fayez Al-Sarraj and Brigadier General Khalifa Haftar as well as representatives of neighbouring countries next week, Al-Farj newspaper reported citing “informed sources”. The meeting, to be held on 4 January, was organised by Algerian officials in an effort to end the Libyan crisis because of its repercussions on its neighbours. The newspaper described the meeting as “qualitative” and “the first of its kind since Algeria launched a series of dialogue meetings for Libyan political parties in 2014”. The newspaper pointed out that if “this round of talks was successful the Libyan crisis which erupted after the fall of former Colonel Muammar Gaddafi’s regime would come to an end.”

Algeria to host Libya peace talks

Algeria will host a meeting of rival Libyan parties including Prime Minister Fayez Al-Sarraj and Brigadier General Khalifa Haftar as well as representatives of neighbouring countries next week, Al-Farj newspaper reported citing “informed sources”. The meeting, to be held on 4 January, was organised by Algerian officials in an effort to end the Libyan crisis because of its repercussions on its neighbours. The newspaper described the meeting as “qualitative” and “the first of its kind since Algeria launched a series of dialogue meetings for Libyan political parties in 2014”. The newspaper pointed out that if “this round of talks was successful the Libyan crisis which erupted after the fall of former Colonel Muammar Gaddafi’s regime would come to an end.”