zaterdag 30 mei 2015

Some news of the last days: new settlement, Bedouin don't have rights, Adnan's hunger strike

New settlement
The Beit Al-Baraka church compound on Route 60. (Photo: Sara Anna)
Beit Baraka
Along road 60 between Bethlehem and Hebron, just north of Al-Arroub camp, is a place called Beit Baraka, which used to be a Presbyterian church. The church has recently been sold and is being refurbished. Buyer was a Swedish entity with the name Scandinavian Seamen Holy Land Church. It now turns out this was just a disguise for a company owned by the American casino magnate Irving Moskowitz, who is an avid supporter of the settlements. He turned it over to Aryeh King, one of the champions of the setllers in Jerusalem. Beit Baraka is now in the process of being prepared to receive new Israeli settlers. The place is strategic: linking the settlements in the Bethlehem area with those in Hebron.
Bedouin don't have rights
Israel’s Supreme Court made a significant ruling this week, setting a precedent for the state to approve the expropriation of Palestinian land in future cases, specifically inside Israel. The court rejected a five-year old petition filed by the Al Uqbi family to recognize its ownership over a large plot of land in Israel’s Negev/Naqab Desert. The land also includes the unrecognized village Al Araqib, which is still in its own legal battle for recognition from the state. Al-Araqb by now has been destroyed over 80 times by the authorities.
 The petition called for recognition of ownership over the family’s historical lands, from which they were expelled in the 1950s. The ruling, which went largely un-reported in the Israeli media, effectively means the state does not recognize Bedouin rights to the land, clearing the path for it to continue to legalize the expropriation of Palestinian lands, whether inside Israel or in the West Bank.
The lawyer of the AlUqbi family, Michael Sfard, said: “The bottom line is: hundreds of thousands of Bedouin have lived for centuries in the Negev, but as the court astonishingly said, the Bedouin way of life does not create any legal rights in the lands they lived on and cultivated for generations.”

Khader Adnan
Palestinian prisoner Khader Adnan
Khader Adnan
 Palestinian political prisoner Khader Adnan, 37, entered his 25th day on a hunger strike Friday protesting his ongoing administrative detention in Israeli prison. Adnan is currently unable to move or stand up and is refusing medical testing, says director of the Palestine Prisoner's Center for Studies Rafat Hamduna. Adnan was detained on July 8, 2014 and sentenced to administrative detention for the 10th time in his life.The arrest came in spite of Adnan's 66-day hunger strike in an Israeli prison in 2012 that inspired hundreds of prisoners to take on Israel's policy of holding detainees without charge.

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