17 | 08 | 2019

Israeli police attacked tens of thousands of Palestinian Muslims on Sunday who were holding the morning prayers for the first day of Eid Al-Adha, one of the main Muslim holidays, at Al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied Jerusalem’s Old City. At least 61 Muslim worshipers were injured in the clashes, according to the Red Crescent. At least four officers were also lightly-to-moderately wounded, Israeli police said.

Sunday marked both the start of Eid al-Adha, a Muslim holiday commemorating the end of the annual hajj pilgrimage to Mecca, and the Jewish fast day of Tisha B’Av, when Jews mourn the destruction of the temples, First and Second, that once stood on the Temple Mount and other disasters in Jewish history.

The Joint List launched its campaign in Jaffa towards Israel’s general elections on September 17, with veteran Knesset Member (MK) Yousef Jabareen and prominent Jaffa activist Sami Abu Shehadeh addressing an audience in Jaffa on Tuesday evening, August 6. Jabareen and Abu Shehadeh respectively hold the tenth and thirteenth slots on the Joint List slate.

The Knesset’s Central Elections Committee (CEC) heard testimony on Thursday, August 8, against the clandestine surveillance operation staged by the Likud during the April 9 general parliamentary elections. On the day ballots were cast for the 21st Knesset, the leading party of the governing coalition, headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, deployed some 1,350 polling-station hirelings equipped with hidden cameras to observe events inside polling stations in Arab towns.

Thousands rallied in Tel Aviv on Tuesday, August 6, to protest the deportation of Israel-born children of Filipino workers. Among the demonstrators were several activists of Hadash and the Young Communist League. Authorities this summer have been working to deport some 50 children of foreign workers born in Israel. The Interior Ministry maintains that the children are in the country “illegally because their mothers have overstayed their visas.”

The Arab-Palestinian LGBT community in Israel organized an unprecedented protest on Thursday, August 1, as approximately 200 demonstrators arrived at the German Colony in Haifa, a central area in the city, to protest violence targeting the LGBT community.

The protest was organized after a 17-year-old from the Arab city of Tamra was stabbed Friday afternoon, July 26, outside Tel Aviv’s Beit Dror shelter, after moving there to escape family pressure.

With only a month and a half to go until the September 17 general elections for Israel’s Knesset, all 32 parties that will be running submitted their list of candidates last Thursday, August 1, to the Central Elections Committee. The representatives of the Joint List, headed by Chairman MK Ayman Odeh (Hadash), include members of Hadash and three Arab parties: Balad, Ta’al and Ra’am. In last April’s election, these parties ran as two separate lists, Hadash-Ta’al and Balad-Ra’am.

Odeh said, “We’ve overcome the divide-and-conquer policy and have come together. Four months ago we made a mistake, but we’ve learned our lesson… We are running together to represent the complete unity of the Arab population. We’ll fight for our people and for all weaker sectors of the Israeli society.”

Police are investigating a settler “price tag” hate crime in the Arab town of Jisr az-Zarqa, on the coast just north of Caesarea, after the tires of 21 cars were punctured on Wednesday night, July 30, and a house was sprayed with graffiti saying, “The hill in [the settlement of] Izhar [in the Occupied Palestinian Territories], we won’t forget and won’t forgive.”

A member of the local council, Mohammed Lufti, said that until recently, no such incidents had occurred in his community. However, he said, “It is a warning and a sign of things to come.”

A disciplinary body of the Israeli army sentenced 18-year-old conscientious objector Maya Brand-Feigenbaum to 20 days in military prison on Tuesday, July 30, because of her refusal to be conscripted.

This is the second time Brand-Feigenbaum, from the northern town of Kiryat Tiv’on, has been sentenced for refusing to serve since she her initial date of conscription, July 14. Upon completing her new sentence, she will have spent a total of 27 days behind bars.

Hadash and two Arab parties, Ta’al and Ra’am, announced on Saturday, July 27, that they are reforming the Joint List in a bid to increase turnout among Arabs voters in Israel’s September election. The three parties said they would be running together and that they await the decision of Balad in the next few days whether it will also participate in the union.

Speaking at a press conference, Hadash MK and the leader of the new Joint List, Ayman Odeh, said the alliance is imperative. “These elections are a second chance for us to reunite in the face of hatred… in the face of racism, in the face of incitement,” he said. “We are back, united and strong.”  He said the new Joint List would seek to bring down the far-right and racist government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Former Prime Minister Ehud Barak apologized on Tuesday, July 23, for the killing of 12 Arab-Palestinians citizens of Israel by security forces in October 2000, during a wave of protests that began following a controversial visit by then-opposition leader Ariel Sharon to the Al-Aqsa Compound (Temple Mount). Twelve Arab-Palestinian citizens and a Palestinian resident of Gaza were killed by Israeli forces in three days of clashes (October 1-3, 2000) in Arab communities in the north of the country in the immediate wake of Sharon’s provocative visit.

The Tel Aviv Labor Court ordered nurses to end their two-day strike on Wednesday, July 24, and return to work while carrying on their negotiations with the Health Ministry to reduce their workload. However, the court decision does allow the nurses to continue with a partial strike by, for example, refusing to perform non-essential tests or computerize information.

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