“. . . For the tragedy I live Is but my share in your larger tragedy . . .” (Tawfiq Zayyad)

❶ Israeli bill aimed at preventing Jerusalem’s division passes reading in Knesset

  • Background: “A National or Religious Conflict? The Dispute over the Temple Mount/Al-Haram Al-Sharif in Jerusalem.” Palestine-Israel Journal of Politics, Economics & Culture

. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) PM Hamdallah to European diplomats: Stop Israel now
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴃ) President Abbas discusses Israeli measures with Turkish counterpart
❷ Israeli soldiers shoot, kill Palestinian after alleged stabbing attempt, sparking clashes
❸ POETRY by Tawfiq Zayyad
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ ISRAELI  BILL  AIMED  AT  PREVENTING  JERUSALEM’S  DIVISION  PASSES  READING  IN  KNESSET
Ma’an News Agency 
July 19, 2017.   A bill aimed at preventing any future divisions of Jerusalem, by requiring a two-third majority in Israel’s parliament in order to do so, passed its preliminary reading in the Knesset on Wednesday.
___The bill, titled “Basic Law: Jerusalem, the Capital of Israel,” passed with 58 Members of Knesset (MKs) voting in favor, 48 voting against it, and one MK abstaining from the vote, according to a statement released by the Knesset.
___The bill aims to mend Israel’s Basic Law on Jerusalem to necessitate the approval of 80 of the 120 Knesset members to make any changes to the law, instead of the regular majority vote.
___According to the statement, the proposal explains that the bill has a “security purpose.”
___“Since the IDF’s withdrawal from Lebanon [in 2000] and the disengagement from the Gaza Strip [in 2005] proved that wherever Israel withdraws from, terrorist factors enter, threatening the security of citizens of Israel,” the bill reportedly states, insinuating that if Israel withdrew from occupied East Jerusalem, it would be taken over by “terrorist” factions.   MORE . . .   

Ma’oz, Moshe. “A  NATIONAL  OR  RELIGIOUS  CONFLICT?  THE  DISPUTE  OVER  THE  TEMPLE  MOUNT/AL-HARAM  AL-SHARIF  IN  JERUSALEM.”
Palestine-Israel Journal of Politics, Economics & Culture, vol. 20/21, no. 4/1, Dec. 2015, pp. 25-32.
Arabs and Jews, the children of Abraham, are becoming increasingly engaged in a religious war. The major focus of this conflict is the Temple Mount/al-Haram al-Sharif and East Jerusalem/al-Quds Al-Sharif. Amalgamated with nationalist and political components of the Arab-Israeli dispute, this religious war also derives from two opposed processes: growing Islamic Judeophobia in the Arab and Muslim world, on one hand; and accelerated Jewish Islamophobia in Israel and the Diaspora, on the other.
[. . . .] Moderate Israeli and Palestinian personalities — religious and secular — have been warning for years that the Jewish-Muslim conflict over the Temple Mount could trigger a worldwide religious war.
[. . . .] Despite these warnings, top Israeli and Palestinian leaders continue to perpetuate this phenomenon to score political gains. Mahmoud Abbas, president of the Palestinian Authority, must politically ride his people’s anger and frustration regarding alleged Jewish intentions to destroy the Al-Aqsa mosque and Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and other right-wing Israeli leaders continue to use the Jewish sanctity of the Temple Mount to gamer public support.
___Netanyahu has also done very little to change the desire of Jewish citizens to rebuild the third Temple (approx. 40%), control and pray on the Temple Mount (approx. 65%), and keep a united Jerusalem under eternal Israeli sovereignty (80%). In fact, on Jerusalem Day, May 2014, Netanyahu proclaimed that “Jerusalem was unified 47 years ago. It will never be redivided: We will never divide our heart — the heart of the Nation. Jerusalem is also Mount Zion and Mount Moriah (the Temple Mount), the Western Wall — Israel’s eternal.” [. . . .]  SOURCE . . .

. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) PM  HAMDALLAH  TO  EUROPEAN  DIPLOMATS:  STOP  ISRAEL  NOW
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA      
July 20, 2017.   Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah Thursday urged the European Union to take immediate action to pressure Israel to stop its violations against Palestinian rights and holy places.
___Hamdallah discussed during a meeting at  his Ramallah office with EU diplomats the recent developments in Jerusalem, particularly Israel’s measures at Al-Aqsa Mosque and the heightened settlement activities in and around Jerusalem.
___He warned of deterioration in the security situation if Israel persists in efforts to change the status quo at Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in occupied East Jerusalem.   MORE . . .
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴃ) PRESIDENT  ABBAS  DISCUSSES  ISRAELI  MEASURES  WITH  TURKISH  COUNTERPART    
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA      
July 20, 2017.   President Mahmoud Abbas Thursday discussed over phone with his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdoğan the recent Israeli measures around flashpoint Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.
___Abbas and Erdoğan reportedly discussed the Israeli installation of metal detectors at the gates leading to Al-Aqsa Mosque, assaults against Muslim worshippers and the attempt to change the long-standing status quo at the mosque.
___Abbas called upon Erdoğan to help de-escalate tensions through asking the US administration to oblige Israel to retract its serious measures and also through his contacts with Israel.   MORE . . . 
ISRAELI  SOLDIERS  SHOOT,  KILL  PALESTINIAN  AFTER  ALLEGED  STABBING  ATTEMPT,  SPARKING  CLASHES
Ma’an News Agency
July 20, 2017.  Israeli forces shot and killed a Palestinian in the southern occupied West Bank village of Tuqu on Thursday afternoon, sparking clashes in which at least one Palestinian was injured.
___An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that a Palestinian attempted to stab Israeli soldiers at an Israeli military checkpoint near Tuqu, adding that “responding to the immediate threat,” soldiers shot and killed the man. They added that no Israelis were injured in the case.
___A Ma’an reporter present at the scene said that Israeli soldiers fired four shots towards the Palestinian near Tuqu’s school, while eyewitnesses said that an Israeli military vehicle then run over the man.   MORE . . .

“I  CLASP  YOUR  HANDS,” BY  TAWFIQ  ZAYYAD
I call upon you
And clasp your hands.
I kiss the dust under your shoe
And say: I’ll lay down my life for you,
Grant you the gift of eyesight in my eyes.
The warm love in my heart I give to you,
For the tragedy I live
Is but my share in your larger tragedy.

I call upon you
And clasp your hands.
I never stooped in my country
Nor will I ever be humbled.
Orphaned, naked and barefoot
I confronted my oppressors,
Carrying my blood in my palms.
I have never lowered my flags,
And have always tended the grass over my ancestors’ graves.
I call upon you, and clasp your hands!

From THE PALSESTINIAN WEDDING: A BILINGUAL ANTHOLOGY OF CONTEMPORARY PALESTINIAN RESISTANCE POETRY. Ed. and Trans. A. M. Elmessiri. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2011. Reprint from Three Continents Press, Inc., 1982. Available from Palestine Online Store.
Tawfik Zayyad (Tawfiq Ziad) was a Palestinian poet, writer, scholar and politician. He was born in Nazareth in 1929 and died on July 5, 1994, in a dreadful car crash while on his way to meet Yasser Arafat in Jericho after the Oslo agreements. He participated in Palestinian political life in occupied Palestine, was elected mayor of Nazareth, and served as a member of the Israeli Knesset.     (More. . .)

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