Palestine

Pro-Palestine threat to picket film festival

By Keren David, May 14, 2009

Pro-Palestinian campaigners have threatened to picket the Edinburgh International Film Festival in June unless it hands back sponsorship money from Israeli sources.

A letter from the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign accuses the festival directors of accepting money from the Israeli Embassy “while people in Gaza are still living in the rubble of their homes, and Gaza victims of Israel’s white phosphorous attacks are still in critical care.”

It calls on supporters to lobby the festival directors to refuse “Israel’s tainted money”.

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Tesco denies labels shift but ‘will meet’ Palestine group

By Paul Gallagher, May 14, 2009

Tesco executives have agreed to meet members of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign to discuss labelling on produce from West Bank settlements, despite insisting that there will be no change in their policy.

The long-challenged voluntary labelling guidelines, whereby supermarkets are encouraged by the government to state explicitly on packaging whether the produce comes from Jewish settlements or not, may be in place by the end of the month.

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Fury as Achille Lauro hijack killer freed early

By Keren David, May 7, 2009

Daughters of the American tourist killed when Palestinian terrorists hijacked a cruise ship in 1985 have expressed outrage at the early release of one of his killers after more than 23 years in jail.

Youssef Magied al-Molqui has been transferred from prison in Palermo, Sicily, to a holding centre for immigrants in nearby Trapani while officials work to expel him.

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New labour movement is ‘pro-peace’

By Leon Symons, April 30, 2009

A new international trades union movement committed to work for peace between Israel and Palestine has been launched this week “to challenge the apologists for Hamas and Hizbollah in the labour movement”.

Trade Unions Linking Israel and Palestine (Tulip) has been started by the Community union in Britain, the Australian Workers Union and the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union in America.

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Hamas killing Palestinians

April 23, 2009

Hamas has been systematically murdering its political opponents in the Gaza Strip since the beginning of the Israeli operation four months ago.

A report published this week by Human Rights Watch (HRW) details at least 32 instances in which Palestinians were murdered by Hamas members. According to the report, at least 18 men were summarily executed during Operation Cast Lead, and at least 14 in the months since.

Most of the murdered were members of Fatah, Hamas’s rival in the inter-Palestinian power struggle.

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Palestine group told: return Lotto cash

By Marcus Dysch, April 23, 2009

A Palestinian organisation has been ordered to return part of a National Lottery grant after an investigation found the money had been used to promote an unauthorised project.

Palestine Lives was handed £7,434 to run a one-day cultural festival at Manchester’s Albert Square in June last year.

But the group later used the grant to promote two film weekends, claiming they were “funded by the National Lottery”.

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Fatah slam Jenin band’s Shoah gig

By Anshel Pfeffer, April 2, 2009

A Palestinian youth orchestra was ordered to disband after performing for Holocaust survivors and its leader was arrested by the Palestinian security services and banished from the West Bank.

Fatah leaders in the Jenin refugee camp are furious that 13 members of the Strings of Freedom orchestra took part in a “Day of Good Deeds” event in Israel last week. The music group was set up six years ago by veteran educator and violinist Wafa Younis, an Israeli Arab. She lived in the camp but has now been banned.

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Oxfam official to be shown Sderot

By Simon Rocker, March 12, 2009

The head of the Reform movement, Rabbi Tony Bayfield, is to take a senior representative of Oxfam next week to Sderot, the southern Israeli town that has been the prime target of rocket attacks from Gaza.

“We will be going to a school in Sderot,” he told a meeting of the Reform council on Sunday, “and he can see Israeli children who have been physically and psychologically traumatised by the war to understand a bit better that there are two sides to the story.”

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Palestinian group tries to sue UK government

By Simon Rocker, February 26, 2009

A Palestinian human rights group has gone to the British courts in an effort to force the government to adopt sanctions against Israel.

Al-Haq seeks a ruling from the High Court that British policy towards Israel is in breach of international law.

In an application for a judicial review filed in London on Tuesday, it named Foreign Secretary David Miliband, Business Secretary Lord Mandelson and Defence Secretary John Hutton as defendants.

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Israel's case ignored in secret government memo

By Leon Symons, February 5, 2009

An internal UK government briefing note on Israel’s recent action in Gaza is written almost entirely from the Palestinian perspective.

The two-and-a-half page private memo was prepared by the Foreign Office and the Home Office’s research and information unit. It is headed: “The British government position on the situation in Gaza”. It contains only two mentions of Hamas and gives no explanation or context as to how or why Israel launched its operation on December 27.

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