After attacking worshippers in al-Aqsa, Israeli forces violently crack down solidarity protests

News Network
April 16, 2022

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Israeli regime forces violently cracked down on demonstrations held by Palestinians in the occupied West Bank on Friday in solidarity with worshippers assaulted inside the al-Aqsa Mosque, leaving at least 344 injured.

The Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS), a national humanitarian organization, said in a statement that its medics attended to 344 injured people following Israeli forces' attacks in several cities on Friday.

It added that the Israeli army also targeted PRCS personnel and hindered their work in providing medical aid to the wounded Palestinians.

Israeli forces fired live bullets at an ambulance and damaged its exterior in the northern West Bank town of Beita, located 13 kilometers (8.1 miles) southeast of Nablus, on Friday.

Journalist Wahaj Bani Mufleh was quoted as saying that dozens of residents in Beita held Friday prayers on their land that is at the risk of confiscation to construct illegal settlements in Jabal Sabih.

After the prayers, the occupying forces brutally assaulted local residents and tried to banish them from the area, Bani Mufleh said.

He added that the confrontations took place in Jabal Sabih and extended to the main entrance of the town, where Israeli forces have maintained a constant vigil.

The army used a barrage of tear gas canisters as well as live bullets to suppress the demonstrators, Bani Mufleh further noted.

The restive village witnessed violent confrontations on Wednesday, leading to the injury of several Palestinians.

One of them, Fawaz Dwaikat, succumbed to his wounds the following day. His death led to an escalation of tensions and fierce clashes that continued till Friday.

The media staff of two satellite television networks said they were also attacked by an Israeli settler while covering the Israeli aggression in Beita. Their equipment was damaged in the attack.

Journalist Khaled Badir was quoted as saying that one of the settlers tried to attack media personnel as they attempted to take shelter in a safe place, and threw cameras on the ground, damaging them.

Moreover, confrontations broke out between young Palestinian protesters and Israeli forces in the towns of Beit Dajan, Qaryut, and Qasra outside of Nablus; at the northern entrance to Bethlehem; in the village of Kafr Qaddoum, east of Qalqilya; at the northern entrance to the city of al-Bireh; and at Bab al-Zawiya in the center of al-Khalil.

Attack in al-Aqsa

More than 150 Palestinian worshipers were injured when Israeli forces stormed the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in the occupied Old City of al-Quds.

The Palestinian news agency Ma’an said the violence broke out at dawn on Friday, when the occupation forces raided the mosque through the Moroccan Gate, also known as the Mughrabi Gate, randomly firing sound bombs and rubber bullets at the worshipers.

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News Network
June 29,2022

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Journalists should not be jailed for “what they write, what they tweet and what they say” and it is important that people be allowed to express themselves freely without the threat of any harassment, a spokesperson for UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has said referring to the arrest of Alt News co-founder Mohammed Zubair in India.

Zubair was arrested by the Delhi Police on Monday after a self proclaimed Hanuman Bhakt claimed that he hurt him by posting a Bollywood film screenshot.

“I think, first of all, in any place around the world, it is very important that people be allowed to express themselves freely, journalists be allowed to express themselves freely and without the threat of any harassment,” Stephane Dujarric, Spokesman for the Secretary-General, said on Tuesday while responding to a question at the daily news briefing here on Zubair’s arrest.

 “Journalists should not be jailed for what they write, what they tweet and what they say. And that goes for anywhere in the world, including in this room,” Dujarric said in response to another question by a Pakistani journalist on whether he is also calling for Zubair's release from custody.

Meanwhile, New York-based independent non-profit, non-governmental organisation Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has also condemned Zubair's arrest.

“The arrest of journalist Mohammad Zubair marks another low for press freedom in India, where the government has created a hostile and unsafe environment for members of the press reporting on sectarian issues,” said Steven Butler, CPJ’s Asia programme coordinator, in Washington, DC.

“Authorities must immediately and unconditionally release Zubair, and allow him to pursue his journalistic work without further interference," he said.

Zubair's arrest came days after the Gujarat authorities arrested Teesta Setalvad on charges of "criminal conspiracy, forgery and placing false evidence in court to frame innocent people" in the 2002 Gujarat riots.

UN Human Rights has voiced concern over the arrest and detention of social activist Setalvad and called for her immediate release.

“#India: We are very concerned by the arrest and detention of #WHRD @TeestaSetalvad and two ex police officers and call for their immediate release. They must not be persecuted for their activism and solidarity with the victims of the 2002 #GujaratRiots," UN Human Rights tweeted Tuesday.

A court in Ahmedabad on Sunday remanded Setalvad and former state director general of police RB Sreekumar in police custody till July 2 in a case of fabricating evidence to frame innocent persons in connection with the 2002 Gujarat riots. Former IPS officer and accused Sanjiv Bhatt, who is serving life sentence in a custodial death case and is lodged in a jail in Palanpur in Banaskantha district, will be brought to Ahmedabad on a transfer warrant.

Setalvad, Sreekumar and Bhatt are accused of abusing the process of law by conspiring to fabricate evidence with an attempt to frame innocent people for an offence punishable with capital punishment in connection with the 2002 Gujarat riots. 

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News Network
June 21,2022

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Mandya, June 21: JD(S) MLA M Srinivas allegedly tried to slap a college principal several times in full public view for not providing prompt answers about the ongoing work at a computer lab.

The ugly incident came to light after a video had gone viral that showed the Mandya MLA purportedly making several attempts to slap the Nalvadi Krishnaraja Wadiyar ITI College principal Naganand.

Huge public outrage is pouring in on the social media against Srinivas for his misconduct.

The video purportedly depicts the MLA scolding and trying to slap him twice before his college staff and local politicians.

The principal appears to be in trauma and astonished while the onlookers are trying to pacify the MLA.

Meanwhile, the Government Employees Association on Tuesday took cognizance of the incident and pledged to bring it to the notice of Deputy Commissioner.

The association convened an emergency meeting and collected details of the incident. The members including association president Shambhu Gowda met the victim and assured him relief.

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News Network
June 23,2022

Mumbai, June 23: Amid a rebellion by Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde, party MP Sanjay Raut on Thursday said the Sena is ready to quit the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government in Maharashtra if the group of rebel legislators camping in Assam returns to Mumbai in 24 hours and discusses the issue with Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray.

Shinde is currently camping with 37 rebel MLAs of the Sena and nine independents in Guwahati, which has plunged the party-led state government into a crisis. The NCP and Congress also share power in the Uddhav Thackeray-led dispensation.

"You say you are real Shiv Sainiks and will not quit the party. We are ready to consider your demand provided you come back to Mumbai in 24 hours and discuss the issue with CM Uddhav Thackeray. Your demand will be considered positively. Don't write letters on Twitter and WhatsApp," Raut told reporters.

"The rebels who are out of Mumbai have raised the issue of Hindutva. If all these MLAs feel that Shiv Sena should walk out of the MVA, show guts to come back to Mumbai. You say you have issues only with the government and also say that you are true Shiv Sainiks...Your demand will be considered. But come and talk with Uddhav Thackeray," he added.

CM Thackeray had on Wednesday offered to quit the top post amid the rebellion by Shinde and later also vacated his official residence in south Mumbai before moving to his family home in suburban Bandra. 

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