19 | 06 | 2019

Israel killed 13 Palestinian civilians who weren’t involved in hostilities or affiliated with militant groups in its latest military campaign in Gaza, according to a new report by B’Tselem released last week. Two of the casualties were children and three were women, one of whom was in an advanced stage of pregnancy. “These deaths are the foreseeable outcome of Israel’s unlawful, immoral policy of bombing homes in Gaza,” B’Tselem said.

Based on B’Tselem’s investigation, from May 3 to May 6, Israel launched airstrikes and fired shells at more than 350 targets in Gaza, wounding 153 people. The rights group also found that none of the strikes “were preceded by any suitable warnings that might have given the inhabitants the opportunity to seek shelter or save their belongings.”

The Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) called Friday, June 14, on all parties who have been invited to the Bahrain workshop initiated by the United States, to refrain from attending, as this framework aims at establishing the principle of “money for peace.”

During a consultation meeting in Ramallah, the PLO Executive Committee announced that it has not delegated any party to negotiate on behalf of the Palestinian people. “Therefore,” it said, “the results of this workshop are null and void and will not create a right nor will they create an obligation.”

Hadash (The Democratic Front for Peace and Equality – Communist Party of Israel) Ta’al, Balad and Ra’am (United Arab List) – are expected to announce a joint campaign for Israel’s September 17 election within the next couple of weeks. Communist Party General Secretary Adel Amer told the Communist daily newspaper Al Ittihad that the intensive talks among the four established parties should conclude with an agreement for a resumed merger within 10 days to two weeks.

The parties have speeded up their negotiations in recent days and held discussions on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week (June 11 and 12), with the aim of wrapping up negotiations some time within in the second half of June.

Rami Ayoub, 43, who owned an aluminum frame and glass business, was killed Tuesday, June 11, when he fell six stories from an office building in Haifa where he was installing windows. His was the 23rd work-related death in Israel this year.

Police have launched an investigation into the circumstances of the accident, which occurred on Tshernichovksy Street. Earlier on Tuesday, a 49-year-old worker fell from a height of four stories from a building on Haifa’s Allenby Street and was seriously injured.

Yet another petition, this one by Ashkenazi Jewish Israelis (i.e., those of European background) was filed last month with Israel’s Supreme Court in Jerusalem, in a bid to strike down the racist Nation-State Law enacted by the 20th Knesset in July of last year.

This new petition argues that the law discriminates against the non-Jewish – mainly Arab-Palestinian – citizens of Israel, as elaborated in a similar petition submitted by Adalah against the same law in August 2018. The new petition also supports the contention of some 60 Mizrahi Israelis (i.e., those of Eastern background) who argued in a second petition to the Supreme Court filed in January 2019 that the law discriminates against Jews of Arab extraction as it degrades Arabic from that of an official language of the state to one that has a “special status.”

Hadash lashed out at the US Ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, on Saturday, June 8, after the New York Times published an interview with him in which he said that Israel has a right to annex parts of the occupied West Bank. “Under certain circumstances, I think Israel has the right to retain some, but unlikely all, of the West Bank,” Friedman told the New York Times.

During his campaign leading up to last April’s general elections, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pledged to gradually annex all West Bank Jewish settlements; a move long supported by nearly all lawmakers in his alliance of right wing and religious parties, and said he hoped to do so with US support.

More than 2,600 persons have signed a petition launched by Americans for Peace Now (APN) against the Trump diplomatic initiative dubbed by the US president as the “Deal of the Century.”

According to the website of Americans for Peace Now, “Jared Kushner, appointed by his father-in-law President Donald Trump to come up with what Trump called the ‘Ultimate Deal’ for Israeli-Palestinian peace, has signaled that his ‘peace plan’ does not aim to achieve a two-state solution. Kushner recently indicated that because past attempts to achieve a two-state solution failed, his plan focuses on ‘new and different ways to reach peace.’ Kushner’s colleague, Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, said the plan is an effort to ‘think outside the box.'”

On June 1, 2018, an Israeli military sniper shot and killed, Palestinian paramedic Razan al-Najjar, 20, during the weekly Great March of Return procession along the Gaza border. Razan wanted to show the world that “We Palestinians can achieve anything even without weapons.” The marksman who shot her undoubtedly had other ideas.

Gay Pride parades will we held during the coming weeks of the month of June in 12 cities across Israel.

Activists from Hadash, the Communist Party of Israel (CPI) and the Young Communist League will march with red flags and carry banners against discrimination, the occupation of the Palestinian territories and capitalist regime in the parades to be held in Jerusalem (June 6), Tel Aviv (June 14), and Haifa (June 28).

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