August 17, 2019

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11/28 Links Pt1: Palestinian dream: To liberate "Palestine" from the River to the Sea; Palestinian arrested in Italy for plotting to poison town’s water supply; Abbas having coffee with terrorists and their families

http://elderofziyon.blogspot.com/2018/11/1128-links-pt1-palestinian-dream-to.html

From Ian:


PMW: The great Palestinian dream: To liberate “Palestine” from the River to the Sea
Palestinian children are still being taught that “Palestine” includes all of Israel. Decades after the Oslo Accords, the PA and Fatah still don’t recognize Israel’s existence.

The photo above is a prime example of this. The Palestinian Authority Presidential Guards posted this image of a young boy making the “V” symbol for “victory” while holding a Palestinian flag. Behind him is the PA map clearly named “Palestine” that includes all of Israel and the PA areas.

The names of the following Israeli cities and regions are written in the colors of the Palestinian flag on and around the map: “Haifa,” “Jerusalem,” “Safed,” “Nazareth,” “Jaffa,” “Tal Al-Rabia (i.e., Tel Aviv, see note below),” “Tiberias,” “Be’er Sheva,” “Ramle,” “Ashkelon,” “the Negev,” “Lod,” “Acre,” and “Beit Shean.” “Gaza” is also marked. The text on the image, states that Palestinians will “return”:

Posted text: “#Good_morning #The_Palestinian_Presidential_Guards”
Text on image: “Palestine We will surely return”

[Official Facebook page of the PA Presidential Guards, Nov. 25, 2018]

Another Palestinian way of saying that all of the State of Israel is “Palestine” is to describe it as stretching “from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea.” This is one of the PA’s popular slogans. Recently it was repeated by a university lecturer who described the “great Palestinian dream”:

Gil Troy: Wanted: Responsible adultism at the UN against Hamas’s ‘kitetifada’

Last Friday, Adele Raemer, a 63-year-old teacher from Kibbutz Nirim, and two other Israelis testified in Geneva at another UN “Human Rights Council” anti-Israel farce whose name reveals its bias: The “Commission of Inquiry on the 2018 Protests in the Occupied Palestinian Territory.” Israel’s government won’t cooperate, justifiably. Why legitimize the latest UN lynch mob, targeting the alleged “military assaults on the large-scale civilian protests that began on 30 March 2018.” But these brave Israelis touchingly described how Israelis – and Palestinians – have suffered since Israel’s 2005 Disengagement-for-Peace from Gaza, what the UN falsely calls “the occupied Gaza Strip.”

“It’s a misnomer to call these ‘protests.’ They were violent attacks,” Raemer exclaimed in Geneva. Testifying for four and a half hours, she explained how Hamas bombs and burns her progressive paradise in the Negev – in undisputed, within-the-Green-Line-Israel. Asked, repeatedly, “Why do you stay?” she answers poignantly, patriotically, “It’s my home. Why should I leave?”

Resenting Israel’s impotence, she says, “I don’t remember voting for Hamas, but they – not my government – run my life. They decide when I go into my safe room – or not. They decide when school is open for me to teach – or not.” Adele, and her children, grandchildren, students, and neighbors, are held hostage by 30,000 thugs harassing the Jewish State instead of building the Palestinian state they claim to desire.

It’s a long way from the Grand Concourse in the Bronx to Geneva via the Negev, but this Bronx-born kibbutznik-turned-activist feels compelled to defend her home. Immediately after she finished Young Judea’s 1972-1973 yearlong course, the Yom Kippur War erupted. Adele returned to Israel to make her life with her people. Inspired by 1970s-style communal Zionism, she eventually settled on Kibbutz Nirim, today a farming community of 372, smack on Gaza’s border.

Back then, three decades after Egypt nearly overran the plucky, two-year-old kibbutz in 1948, Nirim was a Zionist cliché in living color, an egalitarian community making the desert bloom. These farmer-idealists weren’t limousine liberals but true progressives. Most supported a Palestinian state. They happily cooperated with their Palestinian neighbors.

Then, Hamas happened.

Palestinian arrested in Italy for plotting to poison town’s water supply

A Palestinian man with links to the Islamic State group was arrested in Italy Wednesday on suspicion that he was planning a terror attack on the island of Sardinia, according to a state prosecutor.

State anti-terror prosecutor Federico Cafiero de Raho said the suspect planned to poison the water supply in the central island town of Macomer as well as a nearby military base, with ricin and anthrax.

The suspect was identified by the Il Fatto Quotidiano daily as Alaji Aminun, a Palestinian refugee from Lebanon, who moved to Macomer.

The arrest came two months after Lebanese authorities arrested another Palestinian refugee on suspicion of plotting to poison the water supply of a military barracks there. At the time, officials said the suspect had been linked to the Islamic State and had worked with another man, apparently Aminun, to “carry out a mass poisoning in a foreign country” through “poisoning food during a public holiday,” without specifying the location.

PMW: Having coffee with terrorists and their families

Karim Younes is an Israeli Arab terrorist imprisoned in Israel for kidnapping and murdering Israeli soldier Avraham Bromberg in 1980 together with his cousin Maher Younes. Younes was sentenced to life in prison, but his sentence was reduced to 40 years in 2012.

Mahmoud Abbas just had Younes’ family over for coffee.

Fatima Barnawi is a Palestinian female terrorist who placed a bomb in a cinema in Jerusalem in 1967. The bomb failed to explode. Barnawi was sentenced to life imprisonment but was released in 1977, and was expelled to Egypt.

Senior PLO leader Qadri Abu Bakr just had coffee with Barnawi in Cairo.

Abbas has made no secret of his adoration for both these terrorists. In 2015, Abbas honored Fatima Barnawi with the Military Star of Honor, and in May 2017 he appointed murderer Karim Younes to the Fatah Central Committee.

Now both terrorists have been honored again by PA leaders.

MEMRI: Islamic Scholar Maulana Ilyas Qasmi Speaking At Event Organized By Pakistani NGO: ‘Defense Of The State Of Medina Lies In The Killing Of Jews’

Addressing an event organized by jihadi non-governmental organization Al-Rehmat Trust in Peshawar, the capital of Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, Islamic scholar Maulana Muhammad Ilyas Qasmi justified the killing of Jews to protect the religious nature of an Islamic state, declaring: “The defense of the State of Medina lies in the killing of Jews.”

In Pakistan, Islamist groups and mainstream political leaders such as Prime Minister Imran Khan describe Pakistan as Madina-e-Saani (“Second Medina”), meaning that Pakistan is the second Islamic state after the one established by Prophet Muhammad in Medina in what is today Saudi Arabia. Al-Rehmat Trust is the charity wing of Pakistani jihadi organization Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM).

Jaish-e-Muhammad is led by Maulana Masood Azhar, one of the three terrorists freed by India in exchange for the passengers of an Indian Airlines plane hijacked to Kandahar in 1999 when the Taliban were in power in Afghanistan. Maulana Ilyas Qasmi is the chief of the da’wa (“preaching”) department of Al-Rehmat Trust.

Maulana Qasmi is a regular speaker at the events organized by Al-Rehmat Trust. Delivering a special speech at an inter-madrassa debate competition in Peshawar, Maulana Ilyas Qasmi also invited hundreds of people to prayer, jihad, and Kalima. “Kalima” refers to the words spoken to proclaim one’s belief in Islam: “There is no deity but Allah, and Muhammad is his messenger.”

MEMRI: Palestinian Authority Furious At Qatar For Financing Hamas, Accuses It Of Perpetuating Palestinian Schism, Serving U.S. And Israeli Interests

On November 8, 2018, Muhammad Al-‘Amadi, Qatar’s envoy to Gaza, delivered three suitcases filled with $15 million in cash from Qatar to Hamas, as part of an arrangement with Israel brokered by Egypt and the UN. The money, which passed into Gaza with Israel’s consent, is part of a plan promoted by Egypt to affect a ceasefire between Hamas and Israel and subsequently also reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah.[1] According to this plan, Qatar will deliver $90 million to Hamas in the next half year, in six monthly installments of $15 million, to pay the salaries of Hamas’s civil servants.[2] On November 9, 2018, the day after the delivery of the first installment, the Hamas authorities announced that the money was being transferred to the civil servants, and would also be used to fund temporary employment programs for Gaza’s jobless.[3]

Reports have it that, following a meeting between Egyptian President ‘Abd Al-Fatah Al-Sisi and Palestinian President Mahmoud ‘Abbas, the Palestinian Authority (PA) consented to the plan, on condition that the ceasefire be signed between it and Israel rather than between Israel and Hamas. The PA also received assurances that the plan would include efforts to promote the intra-Palestinian reconciliation with an eye to restoring the PA’s control over Gaza.[4]

Nevertheless, Qatar’s delivery of the cash to Hamas sparked fury among PA and Fatah officials, which saw it as fostering the Hamas rule in Gaza and as a violation of past Qatari commitments to deliver aid to Gaza only via the PA institutions.[5]PA officials said that, by funding Hamas, Qatar was strengthening its government in Gaza and deepening the intra-Palestinian rift, to the point where Gaza could become a political entity separate from the West Bank, which would serve the interests of Israel and the U.S. and the American “Deal of the Century.” Some of them praised the Gazans who had thrown stones at the car of the Qatari envoy.[6] Similar criticism of Qatar was also expressed in articles in the Palestinian press.

The following are excerpts from statements by PA officials and from Palestinian press articles criticizing the Qatari move.

Melanie Phillips: Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe the human cost of Britain’s appeasement of Iran

It’s wonderful that the British academic Matthew Hedges is now safely back in Britain after six months in jail in the United Arab Emirates. He faced the seemingly implausible charge of being a British spy, which both he and the British government strenuously denied, and was sentenced to life imprisonment after a farcical five-minute court hearing last week.

Rejoicing, however, must be muted because, after two and a half years in an Iranian jail on an even more implausible charge of being a spy, the Iranian-British dual-national Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe is still there serving a five year sentence, separated heartbreakingly from her four year-old daughter as well as her husband in Britain.

Hedges was released after intense pressure on the UAE by the British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt. Celebrating this victory, Hunt also said justice would not be done until Zaghari-Ratcliffe was re-united with her family. And perhaps he will achieve that too. But so far he has not. And so we might ask why he succeeded with the UAE but has not managed to do so with Iran.

Obviously, we don’t know what has been going on behind the scenes. But what we do know suggests that the British had leverage with the UAE but not with Iran. And the reason for that latter failure surely illustrates the appalling human cost of Britain’s policy of appeasement towards the Iranian regime.

In short, while the British made the UAE understand it had a lot to lose through its treatment of Matthew Hedges, Iran not surprisingly believes that with Britain it has the upper hand.

Melanie Phillips: American hysteria, Brexit, nationalism

Please join me here as I discuss with Avi Abelow of Israel Unwired the attitudes I encountered on my recent speaking tour in America. We also consider the importance of the idea of the nation and the way this is vilified. And of course, the ongoing crisis over Theresa May’s catastrophic handling of Brexit. Her betrayal of the people’s decision to leave the EU, by agreeing to terms which would deliver Brexit in name only but leave the UK under EU control, is beyond shocking. But what will happen as a result of this debacle, no-one can say.

US staying in the Middle East ‘for Israel,’ Trump says

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday that the American ‎presence in the Middle East should be reduced, adding that Israel ‎is one of the main reasons U.S. troops remain in the region. ‎

In an interview with the Washington Post, Trump floated the idea of ‎removing U.S. troops from the ‎Middle East, citing the lower price of ‎oil as a reason to withdraw.‎

‎”Now, are we going to stay in that part of the world? One reason ‎to ‎is Israel,” Trump said. “Oil is becoming less and less of a ‎reason ‎because we’re producing more oil now than we’ve ever ‎produced. ‎So, you know, all of a sudden it gets to a point where ‎you don’t ‎have to stay there.”‎

Since being elected in 2016, Trump has stated several ‎times that he would like to pull U.S. troops out of Syria, saying ‎he would do so only after the Islamic State group was defeated. ‎More recently, he said he would remove U.S. troops from Syria on condition that Iran withdraws its forces from the war-torn ‎country.‎

Israel, US promoting UN resolution condemning Hamas terrorism

The United States and Israel are promoting an unprecedented U.N. ‎resolution condemning Hamas, the terrorist group that controls the ‎Gaza Strip, Channel 12 reported Tuesday. ‎

The resolution, a joint move by Israeli Ambassador to the ‎U.N. Danny Danon and outgoing U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley, ‎excoriates Hamas’ terrorist activities, its rocket fire on Israel, ‎its incitement to violence, and its use of civilian resources for military ‎purposes, predominately its sprawling grid of terror tunnels. ‎

The General Assembly is expected to vote on the resolution on ‎Friday or possibly Monday.‎

If adopted, this would be the first time the General Assembly ‎condemns Hamas, which usurped control of Gaza from the ‎Western-backed government of Palestinian Authority President ‎Mahmoud Abbas in a military coup in 2007. ‎

French news agency AFP said the U.S. was lobbying its European ‎allies to back the proposal. ‎

‎”The U.S. is negotiating the language with the EU. For us, it’s very ‎symbolic to have this resolution presented with the support of the ‎EU,” Danon said Tuesday.‎

JCPA: Iran Prepares for Escalation on Israel’s the Northern Border

Russian transferred S-300 missile batteries to Syria, and with Russian guidance, these have been integrated gradually into the Syrian air defense system.

The possibility that Israel will launch a military preemptive strike on the Hizbullah weapons factories in Lebanon, before they become operational, seems very far off, but not illogical.

Iran and Hizbullah constructed these factories after Israel managed methodically and over a period of time to destroy game-changing advanced weaponry being transferred in convoys from Iran to Lebanon.

With the weapons’ destruction, Iranian Revolutionary Guard commander Gen. Qasem Soleimani decided to construct the weapons factories inside Lebanon to prevent Israeli attacks.

We are now in a very tense period regarding security on the southern and northern borders, and with growing Iranian intervention in the region, no possible scenario can be ruled out. The IDF can handle several fronts at the same time. It has done so in the past, and it can also do it again in the future.

Israel is determined to protect the security of its citizens. But it may have no other choice other than to carry out actions that may not seem to be rational right now.

Dore Gold: Give UNIFIL a mandate ‘to clean out’ southern Lebanon

President of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs and former foreign ministry director-general Dr. Dore Gold called on the UN Security Council to act in accordance with Resolution 1701, which dates to the Second Lebanon War in 2006, to clean out the illegal weapons held by Hezbollah in southern Lebanon.

“There are about 200 Shiite villages in southern Lebanon,” Gold said during a lecture at the Hudson Institute in Washington. “Many residents have prohibited weapons in their homes. They accept payment for it or are simply too frightened to refuse the terrorists’ request.”

In his remarks, Dr. Gold criticized the UN Security Council for not condemning Hezbollah, despite the fact that the organization acted in contradiction to the Council’s 2006 decision, saying that he did not believe they would do so in the future.

Last month the IDF uncovered an observation post used by Hezbollah on the northern border under the guise of the fictitious environmental NGO “Green Without Borders,” the sixth such post discovered in recent years.

“I hope that none of those criticizing Israel’s warfare need to face this dilemma, but it is part of our responsibility as a country, and especially as a Jewish country,” Gold said.

Missile onslaught in next war will not allow Tel Aviv cafes to stay open, IDF general warns

Residents of Tel Aviv will not be enjoying coffee in cafes during the next war, the Head of the IDF’s Homefront Command said Wednesday, warning that “this is a thing of the past.”

“In the next war in Gaza or on the northern front, Tel Aviv residents won’t be able to drink their coffee,” Maj.-Gen. Tamir Yadai said at a conference for the heads of local authorities.

“In 2019 there will be a more complex and challenging threat to Israel, along with the capabilities which we are familiar with. There is another geostrategic reality which presents us with new challenges and threats,” Yadai said at a conference for the heads of local authorities.

“There is no dispute that the threat to the Israeli home front in the next war will be very challenging, especially around the ability to ensure essential services for the civilian population and the resilience of Israeli society,” Yadai said, explaining that the intensity of the next war is something that Israel is not yet familiar with.

Hezbollah is known to have rebuilt their arsenal since the last war fought between the two in 2006, with at least 100,000 short-range rockets and several thousand more missiles that can reach central Israel, including Tel Aviv.

US envoy tells PA to free US citizen arrested for selling Old City home to Jews

US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman called on the Palestinian Authority Wednesday to release from custody an American citizen who is suspected of selling property in East Jerusalem to Jewish Israelis.

The arrest in October of the Palestinian-American, whom Friedman and Hebrew-language news outlets have named as Issam Akel, is said to have prompted Israel to arrest the Palestinian governor of East Jerusalem, in an attempt to pressure the PA to release him.

He is reportedly being held in custody in Ramallah.

“The Pal Authority has been holding US citizen Isaam Akel in prison for ~2 months,” Friedman tweeted. “His suspected ‘crime’? Selling land to a Jew. Akel’s incarceration is antithetical to the values of the US & to all who advocate the cause of peaceful coexistence. We demand his immediate release.”

The Jerusalem resident had been sought by the PA over his involvement in the sale of a home in the Muslim Quarter of Jerusalem’s Old City to Jews, Hadashot TV news reported at the time.

Foreign Ministry urges diplomats to cut UNRWA funding

Israel on Tuesday urged the international community to rethink its donations to UNRWA, the U.N. agency for Palestinian refugees, saying it should be shut down.

“Israel’s policy is to close UNRWA. They are the problem, not the solution,” Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely said at a briefing with 50 foreign ambassadors and diplomats on Israel’s policy on the matter.

Hotovely spoke of the shift in U.S. policy on UNRWA over the past year, with Washington ending its funding to the agency and demanding that it undergo a “fundamental re-examination,” and underscored how other refugee crises have been handled in the past.

“Over the years, we have seen how instead of settling the original refugees, UNRWA has acted to increase the number of refugees, as it did when it automatically transferred refugee status from generation to generation,” Hotovely said.

“There is no parallel for this in the world, and it only perpetuates the [Israeli-Palestinian] conflict. After 70 years, why are there still Palestinian refugees, when it is clear to all that fewer than 100,000 Palestinians from the time of the [1948] War of Independence are still alive?”

Tuesday’s briefing was the first time that foreign ambassadors have been presented with the Israeli government’s alternative model for aiding Palestinian refugees and their offspring, which Hotovely asked them to relay to their respective governments.

“The Jordanian model, in which Jordan de facto naturalized the refugees, is also the right model for Syria and Lebanon,” she said.

Saudi Arabia pledges $50 million to UN Palestinian refugee agency

Saudi Arabia pledged $50 million in aid on Wednesday to the UN agency for Palestinian refugees and their descendants (UNRWA), which has been hit by the withdrawal of all US funding.

The announcement was made at a news conference in the Saudi capital by the director of the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre, Abdullah al-Rabeea.

UNRWA commissioner general Pierre Krahenbuhl told the news conference that the agency had succeeded grappled with budgetary challenges following the decision by the administration of US President Donald Trump in August to end all funding.

The United States had been by far the biggest contributor to the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian refugees and the move dealt a massive blow to its already stretched finances.

Son of president-elect confirms to Kushner Brazil will move embassy to Jerusalem

The son of Brazil’s president-elect has confirmed to the U.S. president’s Jewish son-in-law that his country’s embassy will move to Jerusalem.

“The question should not be whether we will do it, but when we will do it,” Brazilian congressman Eduardo Bolsonaro told Jared Kushner during a meeting in Washington on Tuesday.

Jair Bolsonaro’s 34-year-old son was re-elected in October to a second term and became the Brazilian federal lawmaker to garner the most votes in history with over 1.8 million votes.

“We don’t know the date for the relocation or when it will happen, but we have an intention to do so,” he told Brazilian media when leaving the meeting, wearing a hat bearing the message “Trump 2020.”

Eduardo Bolsonaro also wrote on Twitter that Kushner is one of the White House’s most important advisers and a great entrepreneur, besides being a member of the Trump family.

Terrorist’s Attorney Resigns After Cursing Out Victim’s Family in Court

The attorney for the terrorist who murdered Sgt. Ron Kokia in December 2017 announced his resignation from the case on Tuesday, following a wide backlash resulting from the same attorney’s cursing out the victim’s bereaved family during a court hearing last Thursday, November 22.

A heated exchange erupted between the Kokia family and attorney Nasser Mustafa, a resident of eastern Jerusalem, who represented the terrorist who murdered Sgt. Kokia, and at some point Mustafa called the Kokia family “sons of whores.”
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A formal complaint against Mustafa was lodged with the Israel Bar Association on behalf of the Kokia family by attorney Ben Zion Adoram, legal counsel for the Zionist organization Im Tirtzu.

A viral post by Im Tirtzu shaming Mustafa for the incident was shared by more than 2,000 Facebook users, according to the group.

According to Kan, Israel’s Public Broadcasting Corporation, Mustafa stated that his resignation was due to differences with the accused as well as “information posted to social media… that harmed my good and professional reputation…”

Mustafa mentioned that he represented rightwing individuals from Gush Katif and La Familia.

Egyptian police ‘accidentally’ shot at IDF jeep on border, army finds

Egyptian police “accidentally” fired shots at an Israeli army jeep near the border over the weekend, according to an initial investigation of the incident, the army said Wednesday.

On Saturday night, a battalion commander of one of the units guarding the Israeli-Egyptian border reported that gunshots had been fired toward his jeep, causing neither injury nor damage to the vehicle.

An initial investigation of the shooting by the Israel Defense Forces found that the gunfire had come from an Egyptian police unit stationed nearby.

An army spokesperson said the shots appeared to have been fired “accidentally,” but it was not immediately clear if the Egyptian soldiers had misidentified the Israeli military vehicle or if it had been a misfire of their weapon.

“We don’t think it was deliberately against Israel,” the IDF spokesperson said.

Hamas claims IDF officers installed spy equipment near secret Gaza HQ

The Israeli special forces unit that conducted an intelligence-gathering operation in Gaza which went awry earlier this month had entered the coastal enclave from Israel using false identity cards, in order to plant surveillance equipment to monitor Hamas’s internal communications, a Lebanese news outlet reported Wednesday, citing a senior Hamas official.

On the night of November 11, an Israeli special forces unit inside the southern Gaza city of Khan Younis conducted the raid and was exposed following a search at a Hamas checkpoint, resulting in a firefight in which an Israeli lieutenant colonel was killed, along with seven Palestinian gunmen.

In response to the Israeli raid and deaths of its men, the Gaza-ruling Hamas launched a massive three-day attack on Israel, along with other terror groups in the Strip, firing over 500 rockets and mortar shells at Israeli cities and towns near the Gaza border and leading Israel to the brink of war.

Most details of the operation remain under a strict gag order by the military censor, and all articles about it must be approved, including this one.

The Hezbollah-affiliated Al-Akhbar newspaper quoted a Hamas security source as saying that the Islamist terror group’s initial investigation into the Israeli raid found that the IDF special operations unit had entered the Strip several times over the past year to plant the surveillance equipment, using identity cards identifying its members as Palestinian residents of the coastal enclave.

Hamas: Palestinians aided Israeli commandos in botched Gaza operation

Hamas has uncovered critical information about a botched IDF operation in Gaza earlier in November that left one soldier, Lt.-Col. M. dead, according to a report in the Lebanese Al-Akhbar.

The report states that Israeli soldiers entered Gaza multiple times before the operation through the Kerem Shalom crossing, the Palestinian side of which is under the control of the Palestinian Authority, in order to install listening devices aimed at Hamas’s communications network. In one instance, the commandos were disguised as workers for a Palestinian telecommunications company and installed the surveillance equipment east of Gaza city.

Before their final operation, the Israeli soldiers entered Gaza through the Erez checkpoint using false identities.

While Israel launched dozens of rockets at the vehicle used by the Israeli commandos before their capture, according to the report Hamas was nevertheless able to extract important information about the unit’s operations.

Al-Akhbar also reported that Palestinians inside Gaza helped the Israeli team.

Report: One killed, five injured in explosion in Hamas enclave in Gaza

One person was killed and five were wounded, including a woman in critical condition, in a large explosion in the al-Bureij refugee camp in the Gaza Strip on Wednesday, according to a Palestinian report.

The site of the explosion was a building that reportedly belongs to the Hamas terrorist group.

Pictures and videos distributed on social media showed black smoke rising from the site of the explosion.

Three of the injured were evacuated to Gaza’s Al-Aqsa Hospital. Several others are missing.

Palestinian security forces have closed the area and are examining the circumstances of the explosion,” said Iyad al-Bazam, spokesman for Hamas’s Ministry of the Interior and National Security.

EU Reiterates Commitment to Iran Nuclear Deal in Talks With Zarif

European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini met Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in Geneva on Wednesday and reiterated the bloc’s determination to preserve the multilateral nuclear deal, an EU statement said.

Mogherini underlined need for continued full and effective implementation of the Iran nuclear deal by all parties, “including the economic benefits arising from it,” it said.

Germany’s largest telecom company stops service for Iranian ‘terror bank’

The global giant German telecommunications company Deutsche Telekom pulled the plug on phone and internet service for Iran’s Bank Melli due to US sanction pressure.

On Friday, the US Embassy in Berlin tweeted that Deutsche Telekom “cuts off phone and Internet to Iran’s Bank Melli, which funnels terrorist groups working for the Iranian regime.” The embassy added that “sanctions are working” and “thank you Deutsche Telekom.”

The embassy’s tweet linked to a Thursday story in the German business daily Handelsblatt that said the communication company told the Hamburg-based Bank Melli: “We have to assume that you can no longer make any payments” for Telekom business.

The US reimposed sanctions on Iranian banks, including Bank Melli, on November 5 due to their role in illicit terrorist activities and support for the country’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

According to Handelsblatt, Bank Melli Hamburg managing director Helmut Gottlieb said the loss of Deutsche Telekom service has caused the bank’s operation to be “almost paralyzed.”

The Handelsblatt, whose Friday editorial lashed out at the US pressure on Germany companies on Friday, wrote in its news article that “although the EU and the federal government reject the US sanctions against Iran, German firms are complying with these sanctions.” The paper added that Telekom said it had decided to “end export businesses with Iranian companies.”



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