Nablus raid, Tlaib’s swearing-in ceremony focus of dailies

RAMALLAH, Friday, The Israeli military and settlers’ raid into Nablus and the swearing-in ceremony of Rashida Tlaib, the first-ever Palestinian-American woman to become a congress member, dominated the front page headlines in Palestinian dailies.

Al-Ayyam and al-Hayat al-Jadida reported that two Palestinians were injured by Israeli gunfire and dozens more suffered from the effects of excessive tear gas during an Israeli military raid into the northern West Bank city of Nablus.

Al-Quds noted that three Palestinians were injured with Israeli rubber-coated steel bullets during the raid, while al-Hayat al-Jadida identified two injuries as a paramedic and a Palestine TV correspondent.

Confrontations erupted between Palestinians and Israeli forces after hundreds of Jewish settlers, backed by military troops, forced their way into the religious shrine of Joseph’s Tomb in Nablus.

Al-Ayyam added that Israeli forces detained 11 Palestinians in multiple overnight raids across the West Bank.

Additionally, the dailies highlighted the swearing-in ceremony of Rashida Tlaib, a theme that was covered as the main front page news item in al-Quds, and printed photos for her during the ceremony.

The headlines read: Wearing a traditional Palestinian dress (thobe), Tlaib swears in a member of the US Congress.

Tlaib, who was elected in November to represent the 13th district of Michigan, is the daughter of Palestinians from Jerusalem area, who immigrated to the US before she was born.

Furthermore, al-Quds and al-Hayat al-Jadida said that President Mahmoud Abbas is scheduled Friday to start a visit to Egypt for several days.

Moreover, the dailies reported the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Nickolay Mladenov describing the Israeli settlers’ stone-throwing attack on Premier Rami Hamdallah’s convoy last week as very concerning.

Elaborating on this issue, al-Hayat al-Jadida reported government spokesperson Yousef al-Mahmoud confirming that the attack resulted in the injury of two of Hamdallah’s companions.

The attack took place on at Za’tara checkpoint at 2:00 am on December 25, when the convoy returned from Bethlehem escorting Hamdallah, who attended the midnight Christmas mass at the Church of the Nativity.

Yet, al-Quds said that Qatar is scheduled to transfer the third payment of funds to Gaza during the upcoming week.

Israel’s Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan’s plans to worsen conditions for Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails also hit the front page headlines in al-Quds.

Al-Quds reported Palestinian prisoners slamming Erdan’s planned moves as a declaration of war against them and heralding the imminent eruption of uprising (intifada) inside prisons.

Highlighting other attacks against Palestinians, al-Quds said that Israeli military bulldozers uprooted 50 olive trees planted in Palestinian-owned lands in Burqin town, west of Salfit.

Besides, it said that Israeli Jewish settler groups of Hilltop Youth and Tag Price are sponsored by settler leaders and the Israeli judicial system.

According to al-Quds and al-Hayat al-Jadida, the Civil Affairs Commission has called upon Palestinians not to deal with the Israeli Civil Administration.

The Civil Administration is the name Israel gives to the body administering its military occupation of the West Bank.

Both dailies also spotlighted Haaretz’s report Farming Permits for Palestinians in West Bank ‘Seam Zone’ Cut Drastically.

Based on this report, al-Quds issued a report titled Do Israeli occupation authorities plan to seize Palestinian lands located between the Green Line and Israel’s separation wall?

According to al-Ayyam, five Palestinian factions launch the newly-established Palestinian Democratic Assembly and calls for the activation of Palestinian popular resistance.

It added that Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro said his country intends to move the country’s Israeli embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, though no date had yet been set.

Besides, al-Hayat al-Jadida said that Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew sent a letter to Abbas, thanking him for extending Christmas and New Year wishes.

It added that the cabinet slammed Hamas’ decision to impose tariffs on goods imported to Gaza.

Finally, al-Hayat al-Jadida reported Palestinian ambassador to the UN Riyad Masnour calling on the international community to hold Israel accountable for its violations and crimes against the Palestinian people, so that 2019 would mark the year of ending the occupation.

Source: Palestinian News & Info Agency