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By the Gazette Editorial Board

"We have nothing to lose. We are dying anyway." This is the answer young Palestinians give when asked by the media why they decided to take part in the month-long March of Return, to confirm their right to return and to call for an end to the siege of Gaza, which has lasted more than 11 years.

 

"The occupation is the main reason why we have lost hope. All we can do is to make our voices heard and to break the silence of the rest of the world over the violations committed against us," said one young Palestinian who was part of the unarmed protest against Israeli occupation and the transfer of the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Some of the youth said they were ready to die so as to make the world listen. “We are ready to die today rather than to die slowly under the siege."

 

More than 100 Palestinians have been killed and some 2700 have been injured in the March that ended on May 14,  when the Israeli forces opened fire against the unarmed protestors on what is known as Black Monday.

 

The killing of Palestinians peacefully protesting against Israeli atrocities was regarded as a reason enough by the Palestinian Authority to ask the International Criminal Court (ICC), to initiate a thorough probe into the crimes committed by the Israeli forces.

 

Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki asked prosecutors at the ICC on Tuesday to launch a full investigation into accusations of Israeli human rights abuses on Palestinian territory, saying the evidence was “insurmountable”.

 

Al-Maliki submitted a “referral”, giving the prosecutor at the Hague-based court the legal basis to move beyond a preliminary inquiry started in January 2015.

 

Since joining the ICC in The Hague in 2014, the Palestinian Authority had in mind to use this card to bring to account the Israeli officials who have committed war crimes against the Palestinians. They also wanted to internationalise their cause especially since the US has proved to be an unjust mediator in the peace process.

 

Israel, like the US, is not a party to the Rome Statute. But its nationals can be tried by the ICC for alleged crimes committed on Palestinian territory.

 

When they first filed the case at the ICC in 2015, the Palestinians might have meant to use this card to push forward the peace process with the main aim of establishing their state within the June 4, 1967 boundaries. However, today the situation is totally different.

 

In 2015, the Palestinians froze the case when the Obama administration warned that such a move could abort the entire peace drive. Though the Obama administration failed to force Israel to suspend building more settlements on the West Bank and in East Jerusalem as a condition for resuming the suspended peace process, it maintained that the basic principle for any negotiations was the two-state solution. 

 

However, today, with the unilateral US decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, the Palestinians have lost hope of creating their state with its capital in East Jerusalem. So, they decided to move ahead with their ICC case, since they had nothing to lose.

 

The Palestinians are fully aware of the consequences of such a move since Israel could make it worse for Gaza as well as the West Bank. However, the Palestinians seem ready more than ever to take the fight with the enemy outside their turf.

 

So, will the international community be up to adopting an effective stand against this endless injustice that has been practised against the Palestinians for seven decades?

 

"We have nothing to lose. We are dying anyway." This is the answer young Palestinians give when asked by the media why they decided to take part in the month-long March of Return, to confirm their right to return and to call for an end to the siege of Gaza, which has lasted more than 11 years.

 

"The occupation is the main reason why we have lost hope. All we can do is to make our voices heard and to break the silence of the rest of the world over the violations committed against us," said one young Palestinian who was part of the unarmed protest against Israeli occupation and the transfer of the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Some of the youth said they were ready to die so as to make the world listen. “We are ready to die today rather than to die slowly under the siege."

 

More than 100 Palestinians have been killed and some 2700 have been injured in the March that ended on May 14,  when the Israeli forces opened fire against the unarmed protestors on what is known as Black Monday.

 

The killing of Palestinians peacefully protesting against Israeli atrocities was regarded as a reason enough by the Palestinian Authority to ask the International Criminal Court (ICC), to initiate a thorough probe into the crimes committed by the Israeli forces.

 

Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki asked prosecutors at the ICC on Tuesday to launch a full investigation into accusations of Israeli human rights abuses on Palestinian territory, saying the evidence was “insurmountable”.

 

Al-Maliki submitted a “referral”, giving the prosecutor at the Hague-based court the legal basis to move beyond a preliminary inquiry started in January 2015.

 

Since joining the ICC in The Hague in 2014, the Palestinian Authority had in mind to use this card to bring to account the Israeli officials who have committed war crimes against the Palestinians. They also wanted to internationalise their cause especially since the US has proved to be an unjust mediator in the peace process.

 

Israel, like the US, is not a party to the Rome Statute. But its nationals can be tried by the ICC for alleged crimes committed on Palestinian territory.

 

When they first filed the case at the ICC in 2015, the Palestinians might have meant to use this card to push forward the peace process with the main aim of establishing their state within the June 4, 1967 boundaries. However, today the situation is totally different.

 

In 2015, the Palestinians froze the case when the Obama administration warned that such a move could abort the entire peace drive. Though the Obama administration failed to force Israel to suspend building more settlements on the West Bank and in East Jerusalem as a condition for resuming the suspended peace process, it maintained that the basic principle for any negotiations was the two-state solution. 

 

However, today, with the unilateral US decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, the Palestinians have lost hope of creating their state with its capital in East Jerusalem. So, they decided to move ahead with their ICC case, since they had nothing to lose.

 

The Palestinians are fully aware of the consequences of such a move since Israel could make it worse for Gaza as well as the West Bank. However, the Palestinians seem ready more than ever to take the fight with the enemy outside their turf.

 

So, will the international community be up to adopting an effective stand against this endless injustice that has been practised against the Palestinians for seven decades?

 

 

"The occupation is the main reason why we have lost hope. All we can do is to make our voices heard and to break the silence of the rest of the world over the violations committed against us," said one young Palestinian who was part of the unarmed protest against Israeli occupation and the transfer of the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Some of the youth said they were ready to die so as to make the world listen. “We are ready to die today rather than to die slowly under the siege."

 

More than 100 Palestinians have been killed and some 2700 have been injured in the March that ended on May 14,  when the Israeli forces opened fire against the unarmed protestors on what is known as Black Monday.

 

The killing of Palestinians peacefully protesting against Israeli atrocities was regarded as a reason enough by the Palestinian Authority to ask the International Criminal Court (ICC), to initiate a thorough probe into the crimes committed by the Israeli forces.

 

Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki asked prosecutors at the ICC on Tuesday to launch a full investigation into accusations of Israeli human rights abuses on Palestinian territory, saying the evidence was “insurmountable”.

 

Al-Maliki submitted a “referral”, giving the prosecutor at the Hague-based court the legal basis to move beyond a preliminary inquiry started in January 2015.

 

Since joining the ICC in The Hague in 2014, the Palestinian Authority had in mind to use this card to bring to account the Israeli officials who have committed war crimes against the Palestinians. They also wanted to internationalise their cause especially since the US has proved to be an unjust mediator in the peace process.

 

Israel, like the US, is not a party to the Rome Statute. But its nationals can be tried by the ICC for alleged crimes committed on Palestinian territory.

 

When they first filed the case at the ICC in 2015, the Palestinians might have meant to use this card to push forward the peace process with the main aim of establishing their state within the June 4, 1967 boundaries. However, today the situation is totally different.

 

In 2015, the Palestinians froze the case when the Obama administration warned that such a move could abort the entire peace drive. Though the Obama administration failed to force Israel to suspend building more settlements on the West Bank and in East Jerusalem as a condition for resuming the suspended peace process, it maintained that the basic principle for any negotiations was the two-state solution. 

 

However, today, with the unilateral US decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, the Palestinians have lost hope of creating their state with its capital in East Jerusalem. So, they decided to move ahead with their ICC case, since they had nothing to lose.

 

The Palestinians are fully aware of the consequences of such a move since Israel could make it worse for Gaza as well as the West Bank. However, the Palestinians seem ready more than ever to take the fight with the enemy outside their turf.

 

So, will the international community be up to adopting an effective stand against this endless injustice that has been practised against the Palestinians for seven decades?

 

"We have nothing to lose. We are dying anyway." This is the answer young Palestinians give when asked by the media why they decided to take part in the month-long March of Return, to confirm their right to return and to call for an end to the siege of Gaza, which has lasted more than 11 years.

 

"The occupation is the main reason why we have lost hope. All we can do is to make our voices heard and to break the silence of the rest of the world over the violations committed against us," said one young Palestinian who was part of the unarmed protest against Israeli occupation and the transfer of the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Some of the youth said they were ready to die so as to make the world listen. “We are ready to die today rather than to die slowly under the siege."

 

More than 100 Palestinians have been killed and some 2700 have been injured in the March that ended on May 14,  when the Israeli forces opened fire against the unarmed protestors on what is known as Black Monday.

 

The killing of Palestinians peacefully protesting against Israeli atrocities was regarded as a reason enough by the Palestinian Authority to ask the International Criminal Court (ICC), to initiate a thorough probe into the crimes committed by the Israeli forces.

 

Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki asked prosecutors at the ICC on Tuesday to launch a full investigation into accusations of Israeli human rights abuses on Palestinian territory, saying the evidence was “insurmountable”.

 

Al-Maliki submitted a “referral”, giving the prosecutor at the Hague-based court the legal basis to move beyond a preliminary inquiry started in January 2015.

 

Since joining the ICC in The Hague in 2014, the Palestinian Authority had in mind to use this card to bring to account the Israeli officials who have committed war crimes against the Palestinians. They also wanted to internationalise their cause especially since the US has proved to be an unjust mediator in the peace process.

 

Israel, like the US, is not a party to the Rome Statute. But its nationals can be tried by the ICC for alleged crimes committed on Palestinian territory.

 

When they first filed the case at the ICC in 2015, the Palestinians might have meant to use this card to push forward the peace process with the main aim of establishing their state within the June 4, 1967 boundaries. However, today the situation is totally different.

 

In 2015, the Palestinians froze the case when the Obama administration warned that such a move could abort the entire peace drive. Though the Obama administration failed to force Israel to suspend building more settlements on the West Bank and in East Jerusalem as a condition for resuming the suspended peace process, it maintained that the basic principle for any negotiations was the two-state solution. 

 

However, today, with the unilateral US decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, the Palestinians have lost hope of creating their state with its capital in East Jerusalem. So, they decided to move ahead with their ICC case, since they had nothing to lose.

 

The Palestinians are fully aware of the consequences of such a move since Israel could make it worse for Gaza as well as the West Bank. However, the Palestinians seem ready more than ever to take the fight with the enemy outside their turf.

 

So, will the international community be up to adopting an effective stand against this endless injustice that has been practised against the Palestinians for seven decades?

 

Sydney, April 24, 2018 (AFP) - Australian police were on Tuesday investigating how a 12-year-old boy managed to fly alone to the Indonesian island of Bali and spend four days at a resort using his parents' credit card.

The boy ran away from his Sydney home after a row with his mother, flying first to the Western Australian city of Perth on budget airline Jetstar and then on to Bali, according to commercial broadcaster Channel Nine.

"He just doesn't like the word 'no', and that's what I got, a kid in Indonesia," his mother, Emma, told Channel Nine in a programme that aired late on Monday.

"It's too easy, it's way too easy. There's a problem in our system," she said, calling for tighter controls on air travel by young people.

The family had previously visited Bali on holiday and Emma said her son had already tried to book flights there on his own but had been knocked back by airlines because he did not have a letter from her.

"We screamed, we begged for help (from Australian authorities) for weeks on end," Emma added.

"When the first attempt to Indonesia took place, we were told his passport was going to be flagged."

The boy, who "wanted to go on an adventure", said he was told by airline staff this time that he did not need permission from his parents to board the flights.

He spent four days in Bali, where he said he checked into a hotel, hired a scooter and drank beer before a friend alerted his mother to a geotagged video of himself playing in a swimming pool.

The holiday cost his parents Aus$8,000 ($6,100), according to Channel Nine.

The Australian Federal Police said they were first notified that the boy might try to leave the country on March 8, before being told he might be in Bali on March 17.

The boy was found by Indonesian police the following day.

His parents then flew to Bali to take him home.

The federal police said an alert to prevent international travel had not been placed on the boy, and it did not have the power to cancel or request the cancellation of a passport if there were no suspicions of crimes committed.

"The AFP will work with partner agencies to review the circumstances of this matter and current operating procedures, to ensure this type of incident does not occur again," an AFP spokeswoman said in a statement.

PARIS, March 22 (Reuters) - French ex-president Nicolas Sarkozy told magistrates who put him under formal investigation on Wednesday that accusations that he got illicit Libyan funding for his 2007 election campaign were lies that were making his life “hell”, Le Figaro newspaper said.

The newspaper published a lengthy account of what it said was a declaration by Sarkozy, in power from 2007 until 2012, made to investigators who told him after two days in custody he was formally suspected of passive corruption and other offences.

“This calumny has made my life a living hell since March 11, 2011,” the newspaper quoted the 63-year-old as having told the investigators. Prosecutors are looking into allegations that Sarkozy’s 2007 election campaign was aided by millions of euros in money from late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.

According to Le Figaro, Sarkozy said he was the victim of a destabilization campaign that began in March 2011, based on accusations from Tripoli and a Franco-Lebanese businessman who is also at the center of a judicial inquiry that began in 2013 but snowballed this week when Sarkozy was held for questioning.

PARIS, March 20 (AP) — Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy was placed in custody on Tuesday as part of an investigation that he received millions of euros in illegal financing from the regime of the late Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi.

A judicial source with direct knowledge of the case told The Associated Press that Sarkozy was being held at the Nanterre police station, west of Paris.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to discuss the matter publicly.

Sarkozy and his former chief of staff have denied wrongdoing in the case, which involves funding for his winning 2007 presidential campaign.

Though an investigation has been underway since 2013, the case gained traction some three years later when French-Lebanese businessman Ziad Takieddine told the online investigative site, Mediapart, that he delivered suitcases from Libya containing five million euros ($6.2 million) in cash to Sarkozy and his former chief of staff Claude Gueant.

Investigators are examining claims that Gaddafi's regime secretly gave Sarkozy 50 million euros overall for the 2007 campaign. Such a sum would be more than double the legal campaign funding limit at the time of 21 million euros.

In addition, the alleged payments would violate French rules against foreign financing and declaring the source of campaign funds.

In the Mediapart interview published in November 2016, Takieddine said he was given five million euros in Tripoli by Gaddafi's intelligence chief on trips in late 2006 and 2007 and that he gave the money in suitcases full of cash to Sarkozy and Gueant on three occasions. He said the handovers took place in the Interior Ministry, while Sarkozy was interior minister.

Takieddine has for years been embroiled in his own problems with French justice, centering mainly on allegations he provided illegal funds to the campaign of conservative politician Edouard Balladur for his 1995 presidential election campaign — via commissions from the sale of French submarines to Pakistan.

Sarkozy had a complex relationship with Gaddafi. Soon after becoming the French president, Sarkozy invited the Libyan leader to France for a state visit and welcomed him with high honours. But Sarkozy then put France in the forefront of NATO-led airstrikes against Gaddafi's troops that helped rebel fighters topple his regime in 2011.