The circumstances of the shooting have been highly contested, as local sources told Ma‘an at the time of the deadly shooting that Israeli soldiers in a military tower near the entrance of the camp, which is located adjacent to the illegal Israeli settlement of Beit El, fired heavily towards the teens’ vehicle while they were inside. An Israeli army spokesperson claimed at the time that the boys were throwing Molotov cocktails at the settlement, and that they were outside of their car when they were shot. However, video and photographic footage taken by locals at the scene following the shooting showed the vehicle riddled with bullets, windows shattered, and blood staining the seats, casting doubt on the Israeli army’s narrative of the event. When questioned by Ma‘an in March about how the teens could have re-entered their car and driven away from the scene after being injured with multiple rounds of live fire to the head and chest, the Israeli army spokesperson said she could not comment. The Israeli army did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Monday about Nakhla’s passing, nor about whether an Israeli investigation into the shooting had yielded any results….
Meanwhile, a coordinator for the Palestinian national campaign to restore the bodies of slain Palestinians, Amin al-Bayid, spoke to Ma‘an on Monday and contradicted the Haaretz report, saying that the bodies of Palestinians who were killed in the Second Intifada “who blew themselves up seeking to die martyrs are all available and there is no problem identifying them.” Separately, al-Bayid added that the committee had previously filed an appeal to the Israeli Supreme Court through the Jerusalem Center for Human Rights to release 65 bodies of Palestinians who were killed before 1980 and were buried in what Israel calls “enemy fighter cemeteries,” known to Palestinians as “cemeteries of numbers.” ….
Israel has demanded that Hamas in the Gaza Strip return the bodies of two soldiers, Oron Shaul and Hadar Goldin. And in exchange for the bodies of two soldiers, Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev, Israel released five Lebanese prisoners and the remains of 199 Lebanese combatants and infiltrators, in a deal with Hezbollah. The abduction of the soldiers, we might note, was the pretext for the Second Lebanon War. If Hamas or Hezbollah were holding the remains of 123 Israelis, a world war could be expected. No excuse, explanation or shrug of the shoulders from these organizations would save them. Would anyone believe that Hamas or Hezbollah, groups that control every single thing within their territories, lost 123 bodies, or 10, or even one? But a state may do what a terror group may not, especially a state that is willing to send soldiers to their deaths in order to recover bodies back, a state country that does not quail at killing on a wholesale scale in order to free the bodies of Jews.…http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-1.782924
In Hebron, in the southern part of the West Bank, the soldiers invaded Doura town, south of the city, and abducted a young man, identified as Hazem Khaled Khallaf, 24.
MEMO 11 Apr — Israeli authorities reportedly prevented the head of the Palestinian Federation of Chile, Anwar Makhlouf, who holds Chilean citizenship, from entering the country through the King Hussein (Allenby) Bridge border crossing between Jordan and the occupied West Bank yesterday. Hebrew-language news sites reported that the Israeli Minister of Media and Strategic Affairs Gideon Saar said in a statement: “The days when BDS activists used to work here freely have long gone and we will not allow enemies of the state in.” Neither a spokesperson from the Israeli Airports Authority or the Israeli Security Agency were immediately available for comment. Last month, chairman of the London-based Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) Hugh Lanning was denied entry into Israel and deported just one week after Israel passed the controversial “BDS ban” law. B’Tselem Executive Director Hagai El-Ad highlighted in March that “Israel controls not only who enters Israel, but also who enters Palestine,” hence affecting pro-Palestinian activists’ access to the occupied territory.
Locals told Ma’‘an that the center has been “subjected to all types of aggression by Israeli forces over the years,” highlighting that it had been raided multiple times, and used by Israeli forces as a military post, notably for soldiers to fire tear gas and live fire at Palestinians during clashes or protests in the area. In response to Monday’s closure, a spokesperson from the center told Ma‘an that the center “will stay present in the area and will continue providing medical care to more than 60,000 Palestinians, despite all Israeli forces and settlers violations and aggressions against it.” … An Israeli army spokesperson confirmed to Ma’an that the roads had been closed, but said early Monday evening that they had since been reopened. Severe restrictions on movement for Palestinians are typically implemented by Israeli authorities during Jewish holidays for alleged security purposes.
The homes are located in the Wadi Hilweh area of Silwan, a Palestinian neighborhood just south of the Old City walls, where Israel frequently allows excavations and archaeological digs that threaten the structural integrity of Palestinian homes and holy sites in the area. Rights groups claim that these excavations often seek to promote Jewish heritage and attachment to the occupied city, while erasing Palestinian history, in order to promote claims of Jewish ownership and further displace Palestinians, particularly those living in neighborhoods around the Old City. Last October, UNESCO denounced Israel for failing to put an end to the practice…
Palestinian residents in Wadi Hilweh have long reported sounds of underground digging and the resultant cracks appearing on the walls of their aging homes, but the Oweidas said that the “life-threatening” damages in their homes seen in recent weeks were “more severe than ever before.” However, Khadija Oweida affirmed to Ma‘an that her family would not leave. “We have been living in these houses for decades despite cracks in the foundations and despite the risks,” she said. While the municipality says the buildings have become too dangerous to inhabit, Oweida explained that if the families abandoned the houses, they also ceded control over what happened to them. Settler groups, such as the Elad organization, have long been trying to take over any house in the area by any means, she argued … Rather than force them out of their homes, Oweida demanded that Israeli authorities simply put a stop to the excavations … Israeli authorities have claimed, according to Siyam, that the excavations “are based on engineering standards to ensure the safety of neighborhood.” Siyam said that the cracks and collapses sections in walls, rooftops, and floors in numerous homes in the area are proof of the contrary. Meanwhile, according to experts, archaeologists abandoned the practice of digging horizontal tunnels as long as a century ago, as it is considered professionally unethical and actually leads to the destruction of antiquities.
According to the activist, the forum works “against the illegal Palestinian-European construction in this area and along Route 1 between Jerusalem and the Dead Sea.” According to the forum activist, during Purim vacation two years ago, the Bedouin put up 22 prefabricated dwellings in various encampments, which the official called “outposts.” Those structures were donated by European organizations. After that, the forum decided to fund special manpower from the settlements to oversee what was happening in the encampments. The oversight, according to the forum activist, serves as a deterrent, even if not every structure built without a permit is discovered in real time. “The volunteers in their jeeps immediately report any deviation to the Civil Administration and the police, so that even if someone built, it will be destroyed immediately without the need to be dragged to High Court of Justice petitions,” he said. “The European Union also understands that this is a wasted investment for it and [its representatives] go build elsewhere,” he added.…http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-1.782923
Separately, Israeli settlers leveled privately owned Palestinian lands north of the Kafr al-Dik village in Salfit. Witnesses told Ma‘an that they saw bulldozers escorted by settlers from the nearby illegal Leishim settlement level agricultural lands and pastures in preparation to expand the settlement, highlighting that the archaeological site of the Church of Saint Simeon Stylites, known to locals as Deir Samaan, was “harmed” in the incident. Local farmer Mahmoud al-Dik expressed frustrations over settlement activity in the area, saying that settlers “have started to take control of the whole area north of Kafr al-Dik,” with bypass roads constructed for settlers “swallowing Palestinian lands.” ….
According to the Times of Israel, Mordechai attributed the grave shortage of drinking water in the Gaza Strip to “excessive pumping,” and blamed both the Hamas-led de facto government in Gaza and the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority (PA) for stalling the process of improving water infrastructure in Gaza — implicitly attributing responsibility for the humanitarian crisis to internal Palestinian political tensions instead of the Israeli blockade. Mordechai reportedly blamed Hamas for refusing to connect a recently completed desalination plant built by UNICEF in Khan Yunis to Gaza’s electrical grid, while saying that PA President Mahmoud Abbas had not responded to an Israeli offer to double its supply of water to Gaza from 10 to 20 million cubic meters per year….
Hamas MP Yahia Moussa, for his part, said the seven-member committee had been drawn up with a view to “coordinating between the ministries of the Gaza government in the absence of any governing role by the Ramallah-based unity government”. The PA’s Gaza-based employees were surprised early last week to find that their monthly salaries for March had been cut by some 30 percent. In an effort to resolve the crisis, Fayez Abu Eita, a spokesman for Abbas’s Fatah movement (which leads the unity government), said a Fatah delegation would visit the Gaza Strip “within days” to meet with Hamas officials. Abu Eita did not provide an exact date for the visit but voiced hope that Hamas would “respond positively” to Abbas’s request for the new administrative committee’s dissolution … Hamas spokesman Hazem Qassem, for his part, said that reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas could only be achieved “if President Abbas wills it”. “Reconciliation hinges entirely on the president; it depends on his personal discretion,” Qassem told Anadolu Agency, going on to assert that Abbas “rejects any kind of national partnership”.