nedjelja, 25. rujna 2011.

Linkovi – Palestina/Izrael, Jemen, Sirija

Full Official Text of President Mahmoud Abbas' Speech at the UNGA
It is time for the Palestinian people to gain their freedom and independence. The time has come to end the suffering and the plight of millions of Palestine refugees in the homeland and the Diaspora, to end their displacement and to realize their rights, some of them forced to take refuge more than once in different places of the world. At a time when the Arab peoples affirm their quest for democracy – the Arab Spring – the time is now for the Palestinian Spring, the time for independence. The time has come for our men, women and children to live normal lives, for them to be able to sleep without waiting for the worst that the next day will bring; for mothers to be assured that their children will return home without fear of suffering killing, arrest or humiliation; for students to be able to go to their schools and universities without checkpoints obstructing them. The time has come for sick people to be able to reach hospitals normally, and for our farmers to be able to take care of their good land without fear of the occupation seizing the land and its water, which the wall prevents access to, or fear of the settlers, for whom settlements are being built on our land and who are uprooting and burning the olive trees that have existed for hundreds of years. The time has come for the thousands of prisoners to be released from the prisons to return to their families and their children to become a part of building their homeland, for the freedom of which they have sacrificed. My people desire to exercise their right to enjoy a normal life like the rest of humanity.

'Irvine 11' Muslim students guilty of conspiring to disrupt Israeli ambassador meeting (video)
But the charges against the students drew an outcry from civil liberties advocates and Southern California's Muslim community, who say the students were unfairly singled out for prosecution even though similar protests are common at universities and do not result in prosecution. Erwin Chemerinsky, the dean of the law school at UC Irvine, has also criticized the criminal charges as heavy-handed. The Muslim Student Union was suspended by the university for an academic quarter and put on probation for two years.

A President Who is Helpless in the Face of Middle East Reality
For the American President who called for an end to the Israeli occupation of Arab lands, an end to the theft of Arab land in the West Bank – Israeli "settlements" is what he used to call it – and a Palestinian state by 2011, Obama's performance was pathetic. As usual, Hanan Ashrawi, the only eloquent Palestinian voice in New York this week, got it right. "I couldn't believe what I heard," she told Haaretz, that finest of Israeli newspapers. "It sounded as though the Palestinians were the ones occupying Israel. There wasn't one word of empathy for the Palestinians. He spoke only of the Israelis' troubles..." Too true. And as usual, the sanest Israeli journalists, in their outspoken condemnation of Obama, proved that the princes of American journalists were cowards. "The limp, unimaginative speech that US President Barack Obama delivered at the United Nations... reflects how helpless the American President is in the face of Middle East realities," Yael Sternhell wrote. And as the days go by, and we discover whether the Palestinians respond to Obama's grovelling performance with a third intifada or with a shrug of weary recognition that this is how things always were, the facts will continue to prove that the US administration remains a tool of Israel when it comes to Israel's refusal to give the Palestinians a state.

Machsom Watch in sleepless in Gaza & Jerusalem (video)

Yemeni president returns from Saudi Arabia
The worst violence yet erupted this week with battles between Saleh loyalists and his armed opponents that have so far killed around 100 people, mostly protesters in Sanaa. The elite Republican Guards, led by Saleh's son Ahmed, have been engaged in street battles and exchanges of shelling over the city with army units that defected to the opposition and tribal fighters who support the protesters. The fighting continued even after Saleh returned at dawn Friday. Heavy clashes and thuds of mortars were heard throughout the night in Sanaa and into morning hours. One person was killed overnight after mortars hit the square in central Sanaa where protesters demanding Saleh's ouster have been camped out for months, a medical official said on condition of anonymity. ... Yemen's turmoil began in February as the unrest spreading throughout the Arab world set off largely peaceful protests in this deeply unstable corner of the Arabian Peninsula. Saleh's government responded with a heavy crackdown, with hundreds killed and thousands wounded so far.
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Nine killed in Syria, EU imposes fresh sanctions
'So far, we know of nine protesters killed in various areas in Syria and some 40 injured,' said Syrian activists based in Beirut on condition of anonymity for fear of reprisals. They told the German Press Agency dpa that the casualties were likely to rise. Most of the deaths occurred in the central city of Homs that has been a focal point for the protests that started in March. Two people were killed and about 15 injured in the eastern town of Abu Kamal when security forces fired to disperse the demonstrators, activists told dpa. Meanwhile, Amnesty International reported Friday what it said could be the first known case of a Syrian woman to have been killed in custody during the widening unrest. The mutilated body of 18-year-old Zainab al-Hosni, a native of Homs, was discovered by her family in a morgue on September 13, the London-based group said. Al-Hosni had been decapitated, her arms cut off, and skin removed, Amnesty said in a statement. She had been abducted by plain-clothes men believed to be security forces members on July 27, apparently to pressure her brother into turning himself in, according to Amnesty. In more than 100 areas across the country mass protests were held, opposition activists said, and claimed that security forces fired at demonstrators, including worshippers leaving two mosques in the dissident central city of Hama. Heavy gunfire was heard in the restive southern province of Daraa, near mosques where worshippers were performing noon prayers, broadcaster Al Jazeera reported. ... An estimated 2,700 people have been killed, including at least 100 children, since the anti-government protests started, according to the United Nations.