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CMEP Weekly Bulletin: Six Palestinian NGO’s Demand Action to Reverse Israel’s ‘Terror’ Designation

A look at holy site clashes, designation discussions, and more news in this week’s bulletin.

CMEP’s Bulletin is a weekly round-up of news from the Middle East and represents an array of perspectives on the issues we cover. CMEP does not necessarily agree with all the views expressed in the articles, and they do not speak on CMEP’s behalf.

Image:  Human rights groups around the world have condemned Israel’s decision to designate six civil society groups “terrorist organizations.”(Mondoweiss)

Six Palestinian NGO’s demand action to reverse Israel’s ‘terror’ designation


“It’s been more than five months since Israel designated six Palestinian civil society organizations as terrorist groups, and the groups are demanding that ‘concrete action be taken to reverse the decision. In a joint statement the groups called on third party states, including the US, EU, and intergovernmental organizations (IGOs) to ‘take concrete action against the Israeli occupation authorities’ continued harassment and criminalization of Palestinian human rights defenders and civil society organizations; by calling for full revocation of the designation.’"


Image: Palestinian men gather to apply for work permits in Israel, at Jabalia refugee camp in the northern Gaza Strip, on October 6, 2021. (Mahmud Hams/AFP)

Israel set to raise work permit quotas for Gazans to 20,000
Times of Israel

“The Israeli government is on Sunday (March 27) expected to raise the number of permits for Gazans to work in Israel by an additional 8,000, to a total of 20,000, the Ministry for Regional Cooperation said. Cabinet ministers are set to sign off on a government resolution authorizing the additional permits at their weekly meeting. The decision comes as Israel seeks to reduce tensions with the Palestinians before the Ramadan holiday, with some officials fearing heightened tensions. The quota was raised to 12,000 permits just two weeks ago. An Israeli security official briefed reporters at the time that the ceiling would soon be raised to 20,000 at the initiative of Defense Minister Benny Gantz."


Image: Israeli security forces detain a Palestinian man at the Damascus Gate, Jerusalem, April 2022. (MEE/Aseel Jundi)

Israeli assaults in Damascus Gate and the 'battle over identity' in Jerusalem
Middle East Eye

“A juice vendor cries out advertising his products, ‘fresh and cold, come by and give it a try!’ The smell of grilled corn wafts by from the neighbouring stalls, and the balloon seller walks through the rows of people as children chase after him. ​Countless Palestinian street vendors and merchants fill up the plaza just outside Damascus Gate in occupied East Jerusalem, as hundreds flock to the Old City gateway in Ramadan for nighttime recreation after breaking their fast. Congregations near the gate, known to Palestinians as Bab al-Amoud, have become almost second nature after Ramadan night prayer in nearby al-Aqsa Mosque. The youth are out in full force, drinking hot tea and echoing choruses for Palestine and Jerusalem, and singing the praises of the Prophet Muhammad."

What's Happening at CMEP

Public Statement: Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP) Stands with the Churches of Jerusalem and Prays for the Safety of All Spiritual Pilgrims

CMEP stands in solidarity with the sacred churches of Jerusalem, opposes the police restrictions, and prays for the safety and the ability of all spiritual pilgrims to be able to worship freely in Jerusalem during this holy season.

Action Alert: Ask Your Congressional Offices to Attend Virtual Briefing on HR 2590:

Just over a year ago, Rep. Betty McCollum introduced groundbreaking legislation in support of Palestinian rights. H.R. 2590 ensures U.S. taxpayer funds are not used by the Israeli government to detain and abuse Palestinian children, demolish Palestinian homes and structures, or to further unilaterally annex Palestinian land in the West Bank. On April 26, Representative McCollum and Christian faith leaders will speak at a virtual briefing in support of H.R. 2590 from 3-4:00pm ET. The briefing will include remarks from Christian leaders as well as the release of a letter in support of H.R. 2590 and a Senate companion bill.

CMEP In the News:

CMEP’s Senior Director of Advocacy and Government Relations, Kyle Cristofalo, was quoted in this article on the illegal seizure of the Little Petra Hotel. You can also read CMEP’s statement on this event here.


Support CMEP

Monthly sustaining donations are vital to our work. Please become a monthly donor by selecting that option in the donate link.


Image: Samaria Regional Council repairs Joseph's Tomb, April 13, 2022. (Roi Hadi - Samaria Regional Council)

Clashes break out in Nablus as Joseph's Tomb repaired
Jerusalem Post

“The Samaria Regional Council renovated Joseph's tomb in Nablus on Wednesday morning (April 13) accompanied by the Samaria Regional Brigade, after the site was set alight and vandalized on Saturday night and Monday morning. The construction team arrived at Joseph's Tomb in Nablus early in the morning. The restoration operation, conducted in broad daylight, is the first such event to take at Joseph's Tomb since 2000 when control over the site was returned to the Palestinian Authority on orders of then-prime minister Ehud Barak.”


Image: Freshly baked bread cools at a bakery in Beirut, Lebanon April 12, 2022. (Reuters/Mohamed Azakir)

Lebanon disburses funds to temporarily avert bread crisis, minister says

“Lebanon's government has agreed to disburse $15 million to temporarily resolve growing bread shortages in the country, Economy Minister Amin Salam told Reuters, while saying that the funds would only last a few weeks. Long lines had begun forming outside bakeries across the country since Monday after industry insiders warned that the government had not extended a long-promised credit line for the subsidized good. ‘I've been looking around since the morning but I couldn't find any bread - there's none at all,’ Mohammad Mustapha, one shopper in the southern city of Sidon, told Reuters.”


Image: Pope Francis (L) embraces Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill after signing a joint declaration on religious unity at the Jose Marti International airport in Havana, Cuba, Friday, February 12, 2016. (Reuters/Gregorio Borgia/Pool)

Vatican mulling Jerusalem meeting between pope, Russian patriarch -sources

“The Vatican is studying the possibility of extending Pope Francis' trip to Lebanon in June so he can fly to Jerusalem to meet there Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill, who has backed Russia's war in Ukraine, two sources told Reuters on Monday. It would be only their second meeting. Their first, in Cuba in 2016, was the first between a pope and a leader of the Russian Orthodox Church since the Great Schism that split Christianity into Eastern and Western branches in 1054."

CMEP's Bulletin is a weekly round-up of news from the Middle East and represents an array of perspectives on the issues we cover. CMEP does not necessarily agree with all the views expressed in the articles, and they do not speak on CMEP's behalf.

Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP)
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