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CMEP Weekly Bulletin: Al Jazeera Reporter Killed During Israeli Raid in West Bank

A look at settlements and evictions, investigations, 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: Shireen Abu Aqla was wearing a flak jacket, visibly marked with the word "press", when she was shot. (Reuters)

Al Jazeera reporter killed during Israeli raid in West Bank


“A veteran Palestinian-American correspondent for Al Jazeera has been killed while covering a raid by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank. The Qatar-based network said Shireen Abu Aqla was shot ‘deliberately’ and ‘in cold blood’ by Israeli troops in Jenin. Her producer was also wounded. Israel's prime minister said it was ‘likely’ they were shot by Palestinian gunmen during an exchange of fire. But his military chief said it was not yet able to determine what happened. The Palestinian president said he held the Israeli government fully responsible for what he described as a ‘crime of execution’.


Image: The Palestinian village of Jinba, Masafer Yatta in the West Bank on Friday (May 8). (Nasser Nasser /AP)

Israel begins demolition in contentious West Bank village following court ruling

“The Israeli Civil Administration razed 19 structures in the Masafer Yatta region of the southern West Bank on Wednesday (May 11), the first such demolition since last week's High Court of Justice ruling that the government could expel residents from the area, which was declared an army firing zone. According to the Villages' Council, nine of the structures were family homes, and the rest were used for storage and for housing sheep.”


Image:  Sahar Francis, the Director of Addameer, a Palestinian prisoners rights group, which is one of the six Palestinian organizations designated “terrorist” by the Israeli government. Francis is pictured in her office in Ramallah, in the occupied West Bank. December 2021. (Yumna Patel)

American Bar Association questions Israel’s designation of six Palestinian civil society orgs as ‘terrorist’

“In what must have come as a surprise to Israel’s Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, the American Bar Association (ABA) has now weighed in on Israel’s designation last year of six Palestinian civil society organizations as ‘terrorist.’ On behalf of the ABA, its president, Reginald M. Turner, wrote in a letter to the prime minister dated April 22, ‘We request that you review the concerns some in the international community have expressed questioning whether the procedures utilized [in making this designation] inappropriately deprive persons or organizations of their rights.’"

What's Happening at CMEP

The Joint Nakba Day Ceremony (May 15): Hosted by Combatants for Peace, this service brings together Palestinians, Israelis, and the international community to remember, honor, and acknowledge the Nakba – when more than half a million Palestinians were displaced from their homes in 1948. CMEP is proud to sponsor this event. The registration is being handled through the American Friends of Combatants for Peace and the link below will take you to their website.

Upcoming Webinar: Join Churches for Middle East Peace and the Association of U.S. Catholic Priests for a webinar on May 19th (1-3 pm Eastern) on the topic: Mystagogia: What can we do to build a better future in Palestine and Israel? Part of a series of webinars on Christians in the Holy Land with the Association of US Catholic Priests, this webinar will feature some of the key ongoing challenges for peace and a just future in Israel-Palestine in East Jerusalem (demolitions, evictions, and confiscations) and the West Bank (challenges within Palestinian civil society).

Press Release: Churches For Middle East Peace (CMEP) Affirms Need to Protect Historic Status Quo in Meeting with King Abdullah II of Jordan: On May 9, Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP) had the privilege of convening, in partnership with the Jordanian Embassy in the U.S., a roundtable discussion between His Majesty King Abdullah II of Jordan and distinguished ecumenical American Christian leaders.

CMEP in the News: CMEP’s Senior Director of Advocacy and Government Relations, Kyle Cristofalo, was quoted in this Op-Ed shared by Religion News Service (RNS), which discusses the recent meeting hosted by CMEP with King Abullah II of Jordan and ecumenical leaders from the US.


Support CMEP

We could not continue to pursue our mission to Educate, Elevate, and Advocate for a just and holistic peace in Israel, Palestine, and the broader Middle East without your support. Consider supporting CMEP today.


Image: A man places a Palestinian flag on the Golden Dome after Friday prayers of the holy month of Ramadan, at the Al Aqsa Mosque Compound in Jerusalem's Old City, Friday, April 22, 2022. (Jamal Awad/FLASH90)

PMO: Foreign pressure won’t affect Temple Mount decisions

“Israel will not make decisions about the Temple Mount due to foreign or political pressure, the Prime Minister’s Office said Tuesday (May 10). The PMO was responding to a report that Public Security Minister Omer Bar Lev had given in to Jordanian demands to add 50 more security guards from the Wakf Islamic religious trust to the site. The Wakf was instituted by Jordan after the War of Independence. ‘There is no change or new development in the situation on the Temple Mount,’ the PMO said. ‘Israeli sovereignty has been maintained.’"


Image: Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid holds a press conference at the Foreign Ministry, in Ukraine, on April 24, 2022 in Jerusalem. (Israeli Gov't Press Office (GPO - Anadolu Agency)

FM says Israel does not need US permission to build settlements
Middle East Monitor

“Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said Tel Aviv does not need permission from the United States to build settlements in the occupied West Bank, the Jerusalem Post reported. ‘Israel is a sovereign state and does not ask for permission to operate in its territory,’ Lapid told reporters in the Knesset yesterday (May 10). Lapid's remarks came amid the latest diplomatic row between Israel and the United States over a meeting of the Israeli Higher Planning Council in the West Bank scheduled on Thursday (May 12) to advance and approve plans for 3,988 illegal settlerhomes."


Image: Syrian family is seen at makeshift home during cold weather in Idlib, Syria on January 24, 2022. (Muhammed Said - Anadolu Agency)

Int community has 'all but forgotten children in Syria', charity says
Middle East Monitor

“Save the Children has warned that the $6.7 billion pledged by the international community at the sixth annual Brussels Conference for Syria is ‘woefully inadequate and falls far short of what is required’. ‘It is with a heavy heart that it seems that, yet again, the international community has all but forgotten children in Syria and neighbouring countries who urgently need funding for their survival, learning and protection,’ the charity said in a press release yesterday (May 10). ‘As the conflict enters its 12th year, 97% of the population is living below the poverty line, and more than 80% do not know where their next meal is coming from. Almost 20% of children in Syria are out of school, while a third of families say their children are showing signs of psychological distress.’"

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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