THE LEADER of the UK opposition Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn, reiterated on Saturday his party’s support for the Palestinian cause, condemning human rights violations by Israel.
In a Facebook post on his page, Corbyn wrote: ‘We cannot stand by or stay silent at the continuing denial of rights and justice to the Palestinian people … The Labour Party is united in condemning the ongoing human rights abuses by Israeli forces, including the shooting of hundreds of unarmed Palestinian demonstrators in Gaza – most of them refugees or families of refugees – demanding their rights.’
Corbyn also condemned the Israeli aggression on Gaza last week in which 25 Palestinians were killed and four Israelis killed in retaliatory rocket strikes, describing it as ‘distressing and dangerous – and a reminder of the risk that full-scale conflict can return at any time.’
‘The silence of many governments, including our own, has been deafening,’ he remarked, adding, ‘The UK government should instead unequivocally condemn the killing of demonstrators – including children, paramedics and journalists – and other civilians, and freeze arms sales to Israel.’
Corbyn called for a sustainable peace that delivers peace, justice and security to both Palestinians and Israelis, saying it ‘cannot be achieved while the illegal occupation and settlement of Palestinian land continues, along with the multiple human rights abuses faced by Palestinians on a daily basis and actions of the Israeli government in flagrant disregard of international law.’
Meanwhile, the UK opposition leader said that: ‘If President Trump’s Middle East plan is, as expected, an attempt to bury the Palestinians’ right to a viable state alongside Israel, we will call on our government and the international community to reject it decisively.
‘No peace plan can succeed at the expense of the rights of the Palestinian people. That’s why a Labour government will recognise a Palestinian state and press for an immediate return to meaningful negotiations, aimed at achieving a lasting settlement based on UN resolutions, international law and justice that has been too long denied.’
- Two Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli administrative detention, without a charge or trial, completed on Saturday 41 days of hunger strike protesting their unfair detention, said the Palestinian Prisoner Society (PPS).
Odeh Hroub, 32, from Deir Samet village in the Hebron district in the south of the West Bank and a father of 10, was detained in December, and Hasan Awawi, 35, a father of three also from Hebron, was arrested on January 15 of this year. Both have been on hunger strike for 41 days demanding an end to their administrative detention.
The PPS said the Israel Prison Service has attempted to break their strike by moving them from one prison to another hoping to fatigue them.
The two prisoners are suffering from severe headaches, low visibility and continuous vomiting as a result of their hunger strike, added the PPS.
Palestinians held in administrative detention without charge or trial and on secret evidence often resort to hunger strike to secure their freedom after Israel automatically renews their detention every six months for an indefinite period.
- The National and Islamic Forces, the supreme coordinating body of the major Palestinian factions, has called for widespread participation in demonstrations in commemoration of the 71st anniversary of the Palestinian exodus, the Nakba of 1948.
In a communique, the Forces called for a major rally in Ramallah city in the occupied West Bank tomorrow, May 15, to show anger over the racist and discriminatory policies of the occupation, as well as to express outrage over what has become known as the deal of the century.
It also called for mass protests at Israeli checkpoints across the occupied West Bank on May 17 to advocate for the same cause.
The communique called for the implementation of the decisions of the Palestinian National Council and the PLO Central Council, which call for a complete political, economic and security disengagement from Israel.
For over seven decades now, Palestinians have commemorated the Nakba, or Catastrophe, when Jewish militias ethnically cleansed more than 700,000 Palestinians and destroyed more than 500 villages.
The Nakba commemoration this year marks 71 years of dispossession of the refugees – now numbering in the millions – who are still waiting for their right of return.
- A report issued by Hamas’ Information Office documented 2,457 Israeli violations against Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem during April.
The violations included shooting and arresting civilians, raiding homes, banning Palestinians from travel, and confiscating Palestinian-owned properties, as well as attacking civilians and desecrating holy sites by Israeli settlers.
One of the most serious violations was the shooting of five Palestinians, including a 20-year-old detainee who succumbed to his wounds after Israeli occupation forces fatally shot him near Za’tara checkpoint in the occupied West Bank city of Salfit, according to the report.
The report revealed that 99 Palestinian civilians were wounded in attacks by Israeli occupation forces and settlers across the occupied West Bank over the past month.
During April, Israeli occupation forces detained 405 Palestinians in raids across the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem, the report showed.
The report documented in April 531 raids by Israeli occupation forces on Palestinian houses across the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem.
According to the report, Israeli occupation forces erected during last month 453 permanent and temporary military checkpoints, hindering the Palestinians’ movement across the occupied West Bank cities and towns.
April, according to the report, saw a surge in home demolitions of Palestinian houses by Israeli occupation forces, as part of its collective punishment policy targeting the Palestinian people.
Israeli occupation forces demolished 18 houses across the occupied West Bank, 11 of which in Jerusalem under the pretext of being built without a permit.
The Israeli violations at holy sites in the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem escalated in April, as about 2,739 Israeli settlers desecrated al-Aqsa Mosque, compared to March in which 1,524 Israeli settlers stormed the sacred compound.
The report noted that Israeli occupation authorities banned 374 Palestinians from travelling over the past month and banished 23 others from al-Aqsa Mosque.
Israeli occupation forces demolished during the past month 41 structures across the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem, including shops and agricultural structures and confiscated 23 properties, including vehicles and equipment.
Over the last month, the report documented 33 attacks and 138 shootings at Palestinian civilians by Israeli occupation forces and settlers.
Amid an increase in settlement activity, Israeli occupation authorities approved 770 new settlement housing units in the West Bank settlement of ‘Betar Illit’ and 70 others in ‘Metasada’ settlement, both built on Palestinian lands occupied in 1967.