Three Palestinians killed as Israeli extremist visits Al-Aqsa in ‘provocation’

Three Palestinians killed as Israeli extremist visits Al-Aqsa in ‘provocation’
Palestinian mourners attend the funeral of Sanad Abu Atiyeh and Yazid Al-Saadi in the town of Jenin on Thursday after they were killed during an Israeli raid in the occupied West Bank. (AFP)
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Updated 31 March 2022

Three Palestinians killed as Israeli extremist visits Al-Aqsa in ‘provocation’

Three Palestinians killed as Israeli extremist visits Al-Aqsa in ‘provocation’
  • Yazid Saedi, 27, and Sanad Abu Attyiah, 17, were killed in Jenin during a large-scale operation by Israeli forces
  • An Israeli settler killed another Palestinian on a bus after the Palestinian allegedly stabbed another passenger

RAMALLAH: Two Palestinians were killed by Israeli security forces in Jenin on Thursday, and 14 more were injured, according to Palestinian medical sources.
Yazid Saedi, 27, and Sanad Abu Attyiah, 17, were killed in Jenin, in the northern West Bank, during a large-scale operation by Israeli forces.
An Israeli settler, meanwhile, killed another Palestinian on a bus in southern Bethlehem after the Palestinian allegedly stabbed another passenger.
The Palestinian Ministry of Health confirmed that Nidal Juma’a Ja’fara, 30, was killed south of the town.
The violence coincided with an extremist member of the Knesset, Itamar Ben-Gvir, visiting Al-Aqsa Mosque on Thursday morning, where he photographed some areas with his mobile phone.
Jenin Gov. Maj. Gen. Akram Rajoub described to Arab News the situation in the city and refugee camp as “very tense,” adding that people there were angry.
“The Israeli occupation army’s incursion into the camp and the city this morning had no justification as they did not arrest anyone and did not enter a house as in the previous incursions. They deliberately shot with the aim of killing and wounding, perhaps to satisfy Israeli public opinion,” he added.
Videos circulated online showed smoke rising from the center of the Jenin refugee camp as gunfire echoed in the background. Others appeared to show Israeli soldiers and Palestinian gunmen moving through the narrow streets.
Israeli soldiers also fired tear gas in the vicinity of Jenin Government Hospital and entered its emergency department.
Rajoub said the Israeli forces, which stayed for a short time in the camp and the city, opened fire indiscriminately at civilians in the streets, injuring them and preventing ambulances from giving them treatment.
The camp was the scene of one of the deadliest battles of the Second Intifada. In April 2002, Israeli forces fought Palestinian fighters in the camp for nearly three weeks. Twenty-three Israeli soldiers and at least 52 Palestinians, including civilians, were killed, according to the UN.
Ziyad Al-Nakhala, secretary-general of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement, called on the members of the group’s military wing, Al-Quds Brigades, to mobilize.
“In light of the invasion of Jenin camp by the Zionist enemy army, the secretary-general of the Islamic Jihad Movement announces the general mobilization of Al-Quds Brigades in all their locations,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Israel Defense Force launched a spate of arrests across the West Bank early on Thursday that targeted more than 17 people.
On March 30 the Israeli Cabinet decided to cancel work permits for the relatives of Palestinians involved in violent attacks.
Israeli authorities agreed not to impose a closure on the West Bank despite various warnings of more impending attacks to coincide with the start of Ramadan on April 2.
Meanwhile, witnesses said police deployed at Al-Aqsa searched young men and prevented them from getting near extremist leader Ben-Gvir. They also stopped the Jerusalemite activist Mohammed Abu Al-Hummus and prevented him from moving into Al-Aqsa until Ben-Gvir left.
Bin-Gvir, who had announced two days ago his intention to visit Al-Aqsa every month, said during his tour: “I am here in Al-Aqsa, defying Hamas.”
The Palestinian presidency strongly condemned the killing of Palestinians and the provocative act at Al-Aqsa.
“The Israeli provocations, represented by the continuation of the incursions, the daily killings and crimes by the Israeli army and settlers will draw the region into more tension and escalation which is inconsistent with the efforts made at all levels to make the month of Ramadan, coinciding with the holidays, a quiet month,” it said in a statement.
The presidency held the occupation government fully responsible for this escalation and its repercussions, calling on the international community to take immediate action to restrain Israel and hold it accountable for its crimes.
Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh also warned of the dangerous repercussions of the crimes of the Israeli occupation in Jenin and Bethlehem, and of allowing settlers to storm Al-Aqsa Mosque, calling it a violation and provocation to hurt Muslims.
Tariq Ezz El-Din, the official spokesman for Islamic Jihad in the West Bank, called Ben-Gvir’s tour of Al-Aqsa “a severe violation of the mosque’s sanctity,” and a move that “heralds a new uprising among our people.”
He warned Israeli leaders of the repercussions of such dangerous steps, and urged Palestinians in Jerusalem, the West Bank, and inside Israel to confront these attempts with all force, and “travel to Al-Aqsa to defend and protect the mosque.”
The cycle of violence has continued despite efforts by King Abdullah II of Jordan to prevent it.
The king paid a visit earlier this week to Ramallah to meet Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and senior political and security officials.
Later he received Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz and President Yitzhak Herzog in Amman.


Market blast in north Syria kills at least 9, injures dozens

Market blast in north Syria kills at least 9, injures dozens
Updated 11 sec ago

Market blast in north Syria kills at least 9, injures dozens

Market blast in north Syria kills at least 9, injures dozens
BEIRUT: A rocket attack on a crowded market in a town held by Turkey-backed opposition fighters in northern Syria Friday killed at least nine people and wounded dozens, an opposition war monitor and a paramedic group reported.
The attack on the town of Al-Bab came days after a Turkish airstrike killed at least 11 Syrian troops and US-backed Kurdish fighters. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an opposition war monitor, blamed Syrian government forces for the shelling, saying it was in retaliation for the Turkish airstrike.
The Observatory said the attack killed at least 10 and wounded more than 30.
The opposition’s Syrian Civil Defense, also known as White Helmets, had a lower death toll, saying nine people, including children, were killed and 28 were wounded. The paramedic group said its members evacuated some of the wounded and the dead bodies.
Discrepancies in casualty figures immediately after attacks are not uncommon in Syria.
Turkey has launched three major cross-border operations into Syria since 2016 and controls some territories in the north.
Although the fighting has waned over the past few years, shelling and airstrikes are not uncommon in northern Syria that is home to the last major rebel stronghold in the country.
Syria’s conflict that began in March 2011, has killed hundreds of thousands and displaced half the country’s pre-war population of 23 million.
President Bashar Assad’s forces now control most parts of Syria with the help of their allies, Russia and Iran.

Palestinian killed in Israeli West Bank raid: Palestinian ministry

Palestinian killed in Israeli West Bank raid: Palestinian ministry
Updated 27 min 23 sec ago

Palestinian killed in Israeli West Bank raid: Palestinian ministry

Palestinian killed in Israeli West Bank raid: Palestinian ministry
  • Israeli military say soldiers came under fire during a raid in the town
  • Israel has occupied the West Bank since the Six-Day War of 1967

RAMALLAH, Palestinian Territories Presse: A Palestinian man was killed Friday by Israeli forces during a raid in the north of the occupied West Bank, the Palestinian health ministry said.
Salah Sawafta, 58, “died of critical wounds, sustained by live bullets from the occupation (Israeli military) in the head, in Tubas this morning,” a ministry statement said.
The Israeli military said soldiers came under fire during a raid in the town.
During an operation in “Tubas, several suspects hurled Molotov cocktails and opened fire at (Israeli) troops, who responded with fire,” the army said in a statement, adding “hits were identified.”
The mayor of Tubas, Hossam Daraghmeh, said Sawafta had been leaving dawn prayers when he was shot.
“He left the mosque and was heading to his house wearing a prayer robe. There was a vengeful soldier stationed in a building near the municipality who shot him in the head,” he said.
Daraghmeh said Sawafta had been unarmed when he was hit.
“This man did not have a stone or anything in his hand,” he said.
The Israeli military said five people were detained in overnight raids across the West Bank.
On Thursday, a 20-year-old Palestinian was killed by Israeli troops during clashes in the northern West Bank city of Nablus.
Israel has occupied the West Bank since the Six-Day War of 1967, when it seized the territory from Jordan.


Algeria wildfires ‘all under control’: civil defense

Algeria wildfires ‘all under control’: civil defense
Updated 29 min 40 sec ago

Algeria wildfires ‘all under control’: civil defense

Algeria wildfires ‘all under control’: civil defense
  • Since the beginning of August, almost 150 blazes have destroyed hundreds of hectares (acres) of forest in Africa’s largest country

Algiers: Wildfires, which killed at least 38 people and left a trail of destruction in eastern Algeria this week, are now under control, a civil defense official told AFP on Friday.
“All of the fires have been completely brought under control,” said fire brigade Col. Farouk Achour, of the civil defense department.
Since the beginning of August, almost 150 blazes have destroyed hundreds of hectares (acres) of forest in Africa’s largest country.
Deadly fires have become an annual scourge in Algeria, where climate change has turned large areas of forest into a tinderbox in the blistering summer months.
The justice ministry launched an inquiry after Interior Minister Kamel Beldjoud suggested some of the fires were started deliberately, and authorities on Thursday announced four arrests of suspected arsonists.
Authorities have been accused of being ill-prepared, with few firefighting aircraft available despite record casualties in last year’s blazes and a cash windfall from gas exports with global energy prices soaring.


UAE’s foreign aid over past year totalled $3.5 billion

UAE’s foreign aid over past year totalled $3.5 billion
Updated 19 August 2022

UAE’s foreign aid over past year totalled $3.5 billion

UAE’s foreign aid over past year totalled $3.5 billion

DUBAI: The UAE’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MoFAIC), said on Thursday that the total value of foreign aid provided by the UAE from the start of 2021 to mid-August 2022 amounted to some $3.5 billion.
While Yemen accounted for most of the Emirati foreign aid with over $315 million, the list also included several Arab, Asian and Western countries, state news agency WAM reported.
A range of sectors and programmes received aid from the UAE, including public and health sectors, social services, and education.
Programmes aimed at supporting peace and security received over $74 million, and the water and public health services sectors received $72 million, government and civil society initiatives received nearly $60 million, and services that support the energy sector received some $57 million, and initiatives aimed at supporting the agriculture sector received over $50 million.


Iraq security forces thwart Daesh attack in Kirkuk

Iraq security forces thwart Daesh attack in Kirkuk
Updated 19 August 2022

Iraq security forces thwart Daesh attack in Kirkuk

Iraq security forces thwart Daesh attack in Kirkuk

DUBAI: Security forces have thwarted a Daesh attack in the northern Iraqi region of Kirkuk.

“A group of ISIS remnants attacked a security point in the village of Khabaza, affiliated to Hawija district, southwest of Kirkuk, before they were confronted by a force from the 61st Brigade of the Popular Mobilization,” the Popular Mobilization Forces said in a statement carried by state media Iraqi News Agency.

“One of the brigade’s fighters was shot during the attack, and the point was reinforced strongly from the brigade’s headquarters and from its third regiment,” the statement added.

Iraqi security forces have undertaken extensive operations against Daesh to prevent their resurgence since declaring their defeat in 2017.

Iraqi anti-terror resistance groups have repeatedly warned that remnants of Daesh active in Syria’s east may find unhindered access to the Iraqi border and infiltrate the country to conduct militant activities.