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TOP STORIES THIS WEEK

UN agency for Palestinian refugees launches $95 million appeal to keep COVID at bay (United Nations News)

"The COVID-19 pandemic has sparked a health and socio-economic emergency across the occupied Palestinian territory, the UN agency for the region warned on Friday, noting a swell of coronavirus cases in recent weeks."

"The UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNWRA), said that it requires some $95 million to cover the emergency needs of 5.6 million registered Palestinian refugees in the Middle East, until the end of December.  The funds will, among other things, focus on health, cash assistance and education."

The next congress will have more members that want to condition aid to Israel and that’s what Democratic voters want (Mondoweiss)

"Pretty much every recent survey examining this issue has shown that Democrats want U.S. military aid conditioned. A 2019 Data for Progress poll found that 64% of Democratic voters want to reduce Israel’s aid over the country’s human rights abuses."

"Some of the most striking poll data on Democratic views of Israel comes from a recent  University of Maryland Critical Issues Poll. Among Democrats who had heard of the BDS movement,  48% said they “strongly or somewhat” supported it."

"The data is clear. Like Medicare for All, or the Green New Deal, conditioning aid to Israel is largely popular among Democratic voters and emerging as the mainstream position among the growing progressive movement in congress."
Arab League division over Palestinian cause to dominate talks (Al Jazeera)

"An Arab League meeting on Wednesday will focus on the Palestinian cause after the Israel-UAE "normalisation" deal, with analysts suggesting division rather than usual unity on the issue will dominate the discussion."

"The Palestinian cause has traditionally been a unifying theme for the Arab League, which this year appears to be more a cause for division, rendering the Arab League ever more irrelevant in managing the affairs of the Arab world," said Andreas Krieg, assistant professor of security studies at King's College London.

Marwa Fatafta, a policy member with the Palestinian policy network Al-Shabaka, said, "Many Gulf states have keen interest in formalising ties with Israel and the UAE-Israel was the ice-breaker. Normalisation between Israel and Gulf states has already been in the making, and now it is just a matter of timing."

In This Bedouin Town, Murder Wasn’t the Only Crime (Haaretz)

Gideon Levy writes: "The murder of Yakub Abu al-Kiyan was not the only crime committed by the State of Israel against his village, Umm al-Hiran, and it may not even be the worst."

"In no Jewish community would police have shot at a slow-moving car, and certainly not let its driver bleed to death in that inhumane manner reserved for bleeding Arabs."

"No one has asked where exactly do Bedouin have any rights in this land, which is also theirs. The garbage dump at Abu Dis? The polluted industrial zone at Ramat Hovav? This didn’t happen in 1948 or even 1958. The year was 2017. Without any shame, embarrassment, security excuse or Zionist prattle; pure apartheid in sovereign Israel. To “Judaize,” an abominable term; to get rid of the Bedouin and build for Jews."

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