abbas and trump

Israel News for 6-15-17

Terror Payments
On Tuesday US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee that the Palestinian Authority has stopped payments to the families of terrorists. Yesterday, the PA’s head of prisoner affairs, Issa Karaka, denied that claim saying that demanding the stoppage of payments was “a declaration of war” against Abbas and “an invitation for the dismantlement of the Palestinian Authority.” He said, “it would not lead to stability and would not serve a peace process in the region.”

Karaka explained, “The Palestinian society is made up entirely of families of prisoners and Shahids, and they are all victims because of the Israeli occupation. This demand to stop payments for prisoners’ families is no small matter, but something very big with social ramifications.”

He added, “No one in the Palestinian Authority could make such a move. It would be very difficult for the Palestinian Authority to stop the humanitarian aid to the families of prisoners and Shahids.”

Karaka did confirm that the PA stopped payments to over 200 released Hamas prisoners, but that it was done because of a dispute between the PA and Hamas and not because of American or Israeli demands.

Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman and other Israeli officials also asserted that they saw no evidence of the PA stopping terror payments.

So what exactly was Tillerson talking about?

For further reading click here.

Another UN Report
The UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) issued a report yesterday in which it accused Israel of using, “force that has at times been deemed excessive” against the Palestinians, “which may have amounted to extrajudicial executions.” According to the ECOSOC report, from April 1, 2016 to March 31, 2017, Israeli security forces killed 63 Palestinians, including 19 children, and wounded 2,276 others, including 562 children.

The report also accused Israeli security forces of “deprivation of basic legal safeguards for administrative detainees, isolation and solitary confinement of detainees, including minors, punishment and ill-treatment of hunger strikers, torture or ill-treatment of Palestinian children and the hindering of visits of relatives for child prisoners.”

Danny Danon, Israel’s Ambassador to the UN, remarked, “This is another blood libel against Israel. Just as we got the previous farfetched report scrapped, we will fight against this distorted and false report. We won’t allow slandering of IDF soldiers.”

For further reading click here.

Islands Transferred
Egypt has transferred two islands located in the Straits of Tiran to Saudi Arabia. The islands, which have been disputed for many years, are located at the mouth of the Red Sea and could potentially block Israel’s access to the Gulf of Aquaba and Eilat.

To view a map of the area click here.

Earthquake Exercise
Israeli first responders and security forces have completed a major exercise to prepare for dealing with an earthquake. After viewing the final part of the exercise Minister of Public Security Gilad Erdan said, “It is very important to practice what you see here. There is a fear of the need to evacuate tens and perhaps hundreds of thousands of civilians from their homes, and of total chaos, in which incidents of public disorder, looting, food shortages and the need to rescue civilians from ruins could occur. We have to examine how these organizations communicate with one another, and because of this, this exercise has tremendous importance.”

Erdan also noted that the chances of a major earthquake hitting Israel increase each year.

For further reading click here.

Wonder Woman
You’ll be relieved to know that Jordan has decided not to ban Wonder Woman, and the Israeli super hero will be seen on the big screen throughout Jordan next month. Maybe Wonder Woman can truly use her super powers to bring peace to the region?

For further reading click here.