‘Rendered’ in a Coffin: The Buried Story of Dirar Abu Sisi
Some Palestinian Martyrs Regain Dignity in Death
Hundreds of Palestinians Arrested
• ’Rendered’ in a Coffin: The Buried Story of Dirar Abu Sisi
Obada Bilal, imprisoned in the same Israeli jail as Dirar Abu Sisi, told Al-Aqsa Satellite Channel in an interview after his release, “I met Al-Sisi during interrogation. He told me that a Ukrainian intelligence man approached him on the train and asked for his passport. He was then surrounded by a large number of Ukrainian intelligence services and driven in a black car for six hours. He was handcuffed and blindfolded. Seven people from Israeli intelligence were waiting for him. He was then interrogated, placed in a coffin, and taken to what he believed was the Kiev airport. The plane in which he was transported landed first in an unknown place, then flew on again before landing at Ben Gurion airport. He was finally taken out of the coffin when he reached Israel.”
In reality, the first coffin was merely replaced with a slightly larger one – a solitary confinement cell in an Israeli jail, in which he has been held since May 2011, and where he remains to this day, despite the recent agreement guaranteeing his transfer to an even bigger coffin, the general population of his Israeli prison.
• Some Palestinian Martyrs Regain Dignity in Death
79 sets of remains of people who died between the 1960s and 1990s have been sent to the West Bank, and 11 to Gaza, with ceremonies to honor them being held in both locations. The return of these Palestinians’ remains reopens old wounds, as families once again remember the tragedies of losing their loved ones. In addition, many families continue to suffer as Israel still withholds the remains of another 379 Palestinians and other Arabs.
• Prisoners Call for Hunger Strike Resumption
At a press conference outside the International Committee of the Red Cross in Gaza City on Monday, the Higher National Committee for Support of the Prisoners (HNCSP) called for a return to the hunger strike, in the face of Israel’s failure to honor the conditions of the agreement brokered only two weeks ago through Egyptian officials.
Two prisoners who continued to strike are in life-threatening condition. Akram Alrikhawi has been on hunger strike for 54 days, and Mahmoud Al-Sarsak, who has been on hunger strike for 75 days, has lost 90% of his vision and is also suffering from kidney failure. Saeed, Al-Sarsak’s brother, said that way Israel is treating the Palestinian prisoners “worse than animals.”
• Israel Reduces Number of Prison Meals for Palestinian Children
Child detainees in Israeli jails have accused the prison authorities of implementing a “starvation policy” against them as the number of meals they receive daily has been reduced to two.
• 250 Palestinians Arrested in May
Israel arrested over 250 Palestinian in May, including 35 children, five women, and two ex-prisoners who were freed in the last prisoner swap.
• Jerusalem: Israel’s Flag Flies over the Second Most Holy Muslim Site
A group of Israeli Occupation Forces (IOFs) provocatively stormed the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound on Monday, 28th May and hung a three-meter long Israeli flag over the stairs of the Dome of the Rock mosque. The move is a grievous violation of international law, which regards East Jerusalem as an occupied area.
• Gisha Criticizes Israel’s Unjustifiable Travel Restrictions
The Gisha human rights organization criticized Israel for imposing travel restrictions on Palestinians who move between the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. “The Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) recently sent us a document that details what a Palestinian who lives in the West Bank has to do in order to move to live in the Gaza Strip. Unlike many other COGAT procedures, this one is relatively simple. Still, it reveals a lot about the Israeli Defense Ministry’s policy toward Gaza and provides a glimpse into the lives of Palestinians who have to live according to it,” the organization said.
• Israeli Supreme Court Orders Military to Reconsider Application of Gaza-West Bank Student Ban
Israel’s Supreme Court ordered the Israeli military to reconsider its refusal to allow four female Master’s students from Gaza to pursue their studies at Birzeit University in the West Bank. The decision marks the first time in 12 years that the court has indicated a willingness to intervene in the sweeping ban on Palestinian students from Gaza attending Palestinian universities in the West Bank. The petition was submitted by the human rights organizations Gisha and Al Mezan.
• Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination Calls Israel’s Policies ‘Apartheid’
Between mid-February and early March 2012, the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination held its 80th session, in which it evaluated the compliance of several states with the 1966 International Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD). Among these states was Israel, which became a party to the Convention in 1979. The Committee’s concluding observations and recommendations are notable because they establish that Israel’s policies in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT) are tantamount to Apartheid, and additionally determine that many state policies within Israel also violate the prohibition on Apartheid as enshrined in Article 3 of the Convention.
• Negev Conference Told Settlement Expansion Will Follow Displacement of Arabs
The Fifth Conference on the Development of the Negev and Galilee has been told that there are plans for 10 new settlements in the Negev Desert. This comes at a time when the Israeli government is moving towards the implementation of the Prawer Plan for uprooting and displacing the indigenous Arab people of the region.
According to the reports presented in the conference, the Israeli authorities have established 9 settlements in the Negev over the past few year: Shlomit, Naveh, Bnei Netzarim, Bnei Dekalim, Eliab, Netaa, Hiran, Kermit, and Yezhov. The conference agenda covered job creation and new army bases and training centers, as well as settlements and plans for a new international airport.
• Switzerland Joins Boycott
MIGROS, one of the largest trade companies in the Switzerland, stated that it will boycott Israeli goods produced in West Bank settlements.
• Palestinian Contractors Decline UNICEF Offer
“It is our patriotic obligation towards our people that we must reject any involvement by Israeli contracting companies in any development project in the occupied Gaza Strip,” said Osama Kahil, the Gaza-based head of the Palestinian Contractors Union, in response to reports that UNICEF has invited Israeli companies to bid for tenders to build a water desalination unit in Gaza.