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Ylenia Gostoli

Multimedia journalist and editor

Location icon United Kingdom

I'm a freelance journalist and online producer with Al Jazeera English, currently based in London. Bylines have included Deutsche Welle, Vice News, New Internationalist, Middle East Eye. I was nominated for the Anna Lindh Mediterranean Journalist Award in 2014. I have been based in the West Bank and Rome, and have reported extensively throughout the Middle East and Europe. SOAS alumna.

Portfolio

Selected work - Features

Aljazeera
05/12/2019
LGBT Poles are the latest victims of nation's 'identity crisis'

Warsaw, Poland - Last month, in the central Polish city of Plock, artist and activist Elzbieta Podlesna put up posters of the Virgin Mary against a rainbow-coloured halo, symbolising the LGBT flag. Featuring the Black Madonna - a venerated painting housed at the Jasna Gora monastery in Czestochowa - Poland's interior minister Joachim Brudzinski called the images "cultural barbarism".

Aljazeera
12/17/2018
'Salvini law' could make thousands of refugees homeless

Rome, Italy - "There are always some who are left behind," says the 18-year-old, sat on a sofa in his temporary new home in a northern suburb of Rome. "But I decided not to talk about it, I prefer looking ahead." A "migration and security" decree, which came into force on October 5 and was written into law by the Italian parliament last month, plunges Soumayla's future - and that of thousands of other young people like him - into uncertainty.

DW.COM
12/09/2018
Italy's ghost towns lie in rubble 2 years after quake

Visso, Italy - A pair of socks and a shirt on a drying line stretched across a window may seem like a sign of life amid the silence that still envelops the old town of Visso, two years after a 6.5 earthquake hit the town. But the laundry is a sign that nothing here has changed much since the night when Visso's residents — officially 1,200 — were loaded onto buses and taken to hotels and bed-and-breakfasts on the coast.

Aljazeera
07/04/2018
A traditional Nigerian leader took on traffickers. Has it helped?

Palermo, Italy - It is Saturday morning and Osas Egbon is in her office in Palermo. She dials an Italian number on her mobile phone, but the line goes to an answering machine. The message is in French. "The girl is in France," she says to the four women in the room.

Aljazeera
11/12/2016
Start-up aims to reshape aid structure for Palestine

Ramallah, occupied West Bank - In a light-filled office in Ramallah's first technology park, a group of sleep-deprived youth in their mid-20s are discussing the next steps to promote and develop their newly launched start-up. BuildPalestine is a crowdfunding platform that aims to reshape the relationship between donors and the Palestinian cause by connecting supporters from around the world with local grassroots initiatives.

Aljazeera
02/11/2017
Gaza's starman aims to fight occupation with science

Gaza City - Living in what has been called the world's largest open-air prison did not deter astrophysicist Suleiman Baraka from turning his gaze to the cosmos. "Astronomy is the science of everything.

Aljazeera America
01/08/2015
Bitter harvest: Israeli bombs sowed grief for Gaza farmers

Gaza - But the fighting resumed. When he returned to his land during a second cease-fire, he was greeted by a grim sight. “I didn’t find anything,” he said, pointing at the remains of a stone well. “The land, the fruit trees, the water well — everything was gone, even under the ground.” “At least my home is damaged but still standing,” he said. “Beit Hanoun looks as if a dinosaur passed stumbling by.”

Aljazeera Magazine
Gaza's female fixers

Gaza City - When Ameera Ahmad Harouda began working as a fixer in Gaza in 2005, she was the first woman in a man's world. Since then, an increasing number of women have entered the profession, by choice or necessity, or some degree of both. They are young, English-speaking, educated, ambitious – in a society where one fifth of the population has a higher education qualification, but youth unemployment has reached 60 percent, and women remain less likely to find work after university.

Aljazeera
06/23/2015
Beach gives hope to Gaza's drowning economy

Beit Lahia, Gaza Strip - Yaser Arafat al-Masri's new falafel shop is a simple affair. His fryer is made out of a gutted washing machine, and his salad counter is a simple table he built with recycled wood covered in foil.

VICE News
03/21/2014
Europe Is Failing Refugees From Syria

London, United Kingdom - The stories of two Syrian refugees who try and fail to reach and settle in the UK shed light on the financial and human cost of Europe's refugee policy. Nominated for the Anna Lindh / Reuters Mediterranean Journalist Award, online category.

Selected work - News

Aljazeera
02/06/2019
Prominent think-tank says no-deal Brexit may not be catastrophic

London, United Kingdom - As the clock ticks down on the United Kingdom's pending divorce from the European Union, an influential British think-tank said on Wednesday that it was possible for Britain to avoid a recession should it crash out of Europe without a deal in place.

Aljazeera
11/10/2018
Thousands march in Rome to protest against 'climate of hatred'

Rome, Italy - At least 20,000 people have marched in Rome to express their opposition to Italy's populist government which, they argued, has been fuelling a "growing climate of hatred" since coming to power five months ago. The demonstration on Saturday was organised by left-wing, anti-racism and anti-fascist groups, largely orphans of any mainstream political representation.

Aljazeera
03/25/2019
IN PICTURES: Thousands of Italians, migrants rally for accused 'refugee mayor'

Riace, Italy - An estimated 6,000 people protested in Riace, a small village perched on top of a barren hill in the southern Italian region of Calabria, against the arrest of its mayor Domenico Lucano. Known as the "refugee mayor", he stands accused of aiding and abetting undocumented migration.

Aljazeera
03/12/2017
Basil al-Araj: Police break up protest over court case

Ramallah, West Bank - Palestinian police violently suppressed a demonstration over a court case against slain activist Basil al-Araj and five others imprisoned by the Palestinian Authority (PA) last year. A prominent activist and youth movement leader, Araj, 31, was killed in an Israeli raid in Ramallah last week.

Selected work - Analysis

Aljazeera
04/13/2019
What the 'pursuit of Assange' means for press freedom

London, United Kingdom - Journalists, lawyers, activists and academics have warned that the arrest of Julian Assange could have grave consequences for press freedom if it results in the media's ability to expose government wrongdoings being limited.

IRIN
07/12/2017
Aegean island refugees fear Greek government aid takeover

Chios, Greece - An already overstretched and poorly functioning reception system for asylum seekers stranded on the Greek islands is at risk as many of the NGOs providing health, legal, and other services prepare to pull out or have already left.

Aljazeera
09/26/2016
Is Facebook neutral on Palestine-Israel conflict?

Jerusalem - The Israeli government has repeatedly blamed the flare up of violence in Israel and the West Bank since last October - which claimed the lives of more than 220 Palestinians, 34 Israelis and two Americans - on online incitement. Since then, hundreds of cases have emerged of Palestinians arrested by Israel for Facebook posts.

Latest articles

Aljazeera
01/23/2019
Uncertain future for refugees after Italy shuts asylum centre

The eviction of refugees from Italy's second-largest centre for asylum seekers has continued for a second day amid protests from locals and opposition politicians over the way the transfers are being carried out. The reception centre is located in Castelnuovo di Porto, a town near Rome, and the vast majority of the 540 people there are asylum seekers, including women and children.

DW.COM
01/23/2019
Why Italy needs an ethical tomato sauce | DW | 17.01.2019

The sight of the vast slums of the Apulia region of southern Italy, where agricultural workers live in corrugated iron and wood shacks, didn't fail to strike a young Yvan Sagnet when he first set foot there. That was back in 2011, when he was a 26-year-old student at the Polytechnic University of Turin, looking to make some money to pay his fees.

DW.COM
11/26/2018
Italian feminist activists take on the government

Centro Donna LISA is a simple apartment in a nondescript block in Rome's northern periphery, a part of the city far from the glamour visitors usually get to see. Tania La Tella climbs the steps of the metal fire escape, complaining that the block's other residents don't let the center use the main entrance.

Aljazeera
11/21/2018
Could the EU's battle with Italy over its budget spark a crisis?

Rome, Italy - The European Commission has taken the first steps to fining Italy over its national budget, saying it deviates from the EU's fiscal rules and commitments made by the previous government. The move comes as Italy, which received a European Commission request to adjust its 2019 budget to meet EU parameters, refuses to make any substantial changes.

Aljazeera
11/13/2018
As Rome camp eviction makes refugees homeless, Salvini celebrates

Rome - An informal refugee camp in Rome which opened at the height of the crisis in 2015 was evacuated on Tuesday, sending several vulnerable people onto the streets as winter sets in. Located in an empty parking lot near one of Rome's main train stations, the Baobab camp would normally host around 300 people, mostly transiting for a few days or months.

DW.COM
10/22/2018
German refugee NGO plane looks for the living and the dead

The four-seat search and rescue aircraft, Moonbird, veers sharply towards a cargo vessel in international waters south of the Italian island of Lampedusa. Neeske Beckmann, the 29-year-old flight coordinator, snaps pictures from the air and scans the sea as the plane circles over it. There appears to be no one on the deck.

Aljazeera
10/02/2018
Italy's pro-refugee mayor arrested

The mayor of an Italian town known around the world as a model of integration has been put under house arrest for 'aiding illegal migration'. Domenico Lucano, who has been the mayor of the southern Italian town of Riace since 2004, is also accused of unlawful conduct in assigning contracts for rubbish collection services.

Aljazeera
09/26/2018
Italy's Muslims uneasy after election of far-right government

Rome, Italy - On Friday after midday, on a tree-lined residential street in southeastern Rome, people speak an assortment of languages and dialects, from north African Arabic to the local Roman slang. The bottom floor of a peeling post-war building hosts a "prayer home".

DW.COM
04/28/2019
Refugees in Italy get their hands dirty with own farm

Oleggio, Italy - Every morning Dembo Cisse, a sturdily built 21-year-old from Guinea, waits for the car to pick him up. He and two others, who live together in an apartment that belongs to Italy's privatized migrant reception system, get in the vehicle.

Aljazeera
09/24/2018
Italian government adopts hardline anti-migrant decree

Rome, Italy - Italy's council of ministers adopted on Monday a decree to regulate the government's much-touted crackdown on migration. Dubbed the "Salvini decree" after Matteo Salvini, the country's far-right interior minister who drafted it, the document is an emergency instrument that parliament must convert into law within 60 days, but can also be extended.

Aljazeera
08/28/2018
Italy: Migrants protest expulsion from refugee centres in Naples

Naples, Italy - Dozens of migrants and refugees protested on Tuesday against a decision that will see them lose their right to live in migrant reception centres, leaving them homeless and jeopardising their asylum applications. The local government issued notices to asylum seekers living in four migrant centres, announcing its intention to expel them because they were absent when police performed checks on August 13.

Aljazeera
08/24/2018
Odyssey for refugees stuck on Italy ship goes on as EU talks fail

For the scores of refugees and migrants on board an Italian coastguard ship, the odyssey of their journey to Europe continues - despite reaching destination. Nine days ago, the Diciotti rescued dinghies in distress off the Maltese coast in the Mediterranean.

Aljazeera
08/16/2018
Could the Genoa bridge collapse have been prevented?

Rome, Italy - As the search for survivors in Genoa continues, questions are being raised about whether the collapse of the Morandi bridge - one of the main arteries into the city - could have been prevented. On August 14, at around 12pm local time (10:00 GMT), the central section of the bridge gave way as Italy experienced a gust of bad weather.

DW.COM
08/16/2018
9 shootings in 50 days: Italy's ugly face of racism | DW | 16.08.2018

The shot fired from an air gun that disrupted the tranquility of a tree-lined provincial road in the central Italian city of Forlì in early July was met with disbelief by those who initially didn't pick up on it - not everyone in the city pays much attention to local events.

Aljazeera
08/15/2018
Italy bridge: 39 dead as rescuers search for survivors

Italian emergency workers pulled more bodies out of tons of broken concrete and twisted steel on Wednesday after a highway bridge collapsed in Genoa, raising the death toll to at least 39 people.

TRT magazine
08/03/2018
Historical Women's Home in Italy at risk of closure

ROME - At the end of a long corridor in a labyrinthine 17th century building in the heart of Rome, archivist Giovanna Olivieri is sorting through letters and documents, most of them handwritten and belonging to a certain Laura.

Aljazeera
07/26/2018
Hundreds of Roma forcibly evicted from camp in Rome

Despite a by the European Court of Human Rights to halt the evacuation of a Roma camp in northern Rome, Italian police and municipal authorities evicted its roughly 300 residents on Thursday. The operation at Camping River started in the early morning and deployed a large police contingent, continuing throughout the day.

DW.COM
06/13/2018
Migrants put mafia mobsters behind bars in Palermo

There was a time when the door to Ruben's store had to stay permanently shut, even during opening hours. Originally from Bangladesh, in 2002 he opened a money-wiring store on Maqueda street, one of the main arteries in Palermo's city's historic center and one of its most diverse.

Aljazeera
06/01/2018
Will populists put Italy on collision course with Europe?

Rome, Italy - Italy's post-election rollercoaster found a resolution on Thursday evening, 88 days after voters went to the polls, with the announcement of a new government led by the anti-establishment Five Star Movement and the anti-migrant League.

TRT magazine
05/26/2018
How Italian populists plan to govern their country

The coalition of the anti-establishment Five Star Movement and anti-migrant the League has been high on hostile rhetoric, but it remains to be seen whether it translates into reality.

Aljazeera
04/24/2018
Italian court rules Iuventa rescue vessel will remain impounded

Rome - Italy's Supreme Court has rejected an appeal against the seizure of an NGO rescue ship, the Iuventa, impounded in August 2017 following an investigation initiated by the Italian authorities into NGOs in the Mediterranean.

Aljazeera
04/08/2018
Refugees hoping to reach France find solidarity in the Alps

Claviere, Susa Valley - As tourists begin making their way back to their chalets after a day out skiing in the Italian resort town of Claviere, migrants and refugees hoping to cross into France descend from buses. The town is home to just 200 people and located two kilometres from the French-Italian border deep inside the Alps.

Aljazeera
03/20/2018
NGOs warn of intimidation as Italy seizes migrant rescue ship

Rome, Italy - Human rights groups have warned of a campaign of intimidation after Italian authorities seized a Spanish rescue ship and threatened criminal charges against some of its crew members who refused to hand over rescued refugees and migrants to the Libyan coastguard.

Aljazeera
03/15/2018
Italy to temporarily close Lampedusa 'hotspot' refugee centre

Rome, Italy - Italy's Ministry of Interior decided this week to temporarily close a refugee detention centre, known as a "hotspot" in Lampedusa, a Mediterranean island between Sicily and Tunisia. The decision follows protests and a fire that took place at the centre on March 8.

Aljazeera
03/08/2018
Protests and questions over killing of Senegal migrant Idy Diene

Rome, Italy - As Italians woke up to election results on Monday, 54-year-old Idy Diene left his home in the town of Pontedera and headed into Florence. The 54-year-old migrated to Italy from Senegal 20 years ago, and eked out a living by selling accessories to passersby and tourists.

TRT magazine
'In the end they want you to leave'

TEL AVIV - Some refugees in Israel have been faced with a choice: prison or deportation. But whole community has been living in a permanent state of uncertainty for years.

Aljazeera
02/02/2018
How the internet 'punishes' Palestinians

As governments across the globe increasingly use the internet to crack down on dissent, manipulate information and control access, the idea of the web as a space of democracy and freedom has all but withered. In the past two years, Palestinians launched several campaigns accusing tech companies of discrimination and bias, with hashtags such as #FBCensorsPalestine and #PayPalForPalestine going viral.

Aljazeera
01/20/2018
Palestinians fight Facebook, YouTube censorship

Ramallah, occupied West Bank - Amid an ever-shrinking space for dissenting Palestinian voices, a new initiative sets out to recover some of the ground lost online. Sada Social, a group launched in September by three Palestinian journalists, aims to document "violations against Palestinian content" on social networks such as Facebook and YouTube, and to liaise with its executives to restore some of the pages and accounts that have been shut down.

alaraby
01/21/2018
No prospects for justice a year after killing of Palestinian teacher in Umm al-Hiran

A year after the death of Yaakub Abu al-Qian, an internal police investigation has ended with a recommendation that no charges be filed against the officers involved in his shooting, according to Israeli media reports. On January 18, 2017, preparations for a large-scale home demolition in Umm al-Hiran, an "unrecognised" Negev village, ended with two fatalities.

alaraby
01/15/2018
Tamimi detention decision delayed by military court

The 16-year-old will remain in custody until her next court date, a judge ruled on Monday. A military judge has postponed a decision on whether to remand 16-year-old Palestinian activist Ahed Tamimi to custody until the end of her trial or release her on bail.

alaraby
12/08/2017
The Waste Bank: How Israeli waste ends up dumped in the occupied Palestinian territories

In-depth: While Israel is increasing the amount of waste it produces and recycles, it is doing so at the expense of Palestinians, according to a new report. Driving through the fertile plains of the Jordan Valley, in the eastern occupied West Bank, lush agricultural fields dot an otherwise arid landscape - visual evidence of the region's unequal water supply distribution.

Qantara.de
11/15/2017
Erdogan′s Turkey: Eroding Ataturk's legacy

On 18 October, the Turkish parliament approved a controversial bill that in future will allow Islamic muftis to register weddings. Critics fear that this will erode the civil rights of women and expose more girls to the dangers of underage marriage. Ylenia Gostoli reports from Turkey

alaraby
10/30/2017
Human rights workers in 'Istanbul 11' case released on bail

The decision came just before midnight on Wednesday at the end of a gruelling 12-hour hearing, in a case that involves a total of eleven accused - including the chair and the director of Amnesty International Turkey, as well as a Swedish and a German national - in one of the most high-profile trials since the coup attempt in July last year.

TRT
Israel's relentless war on EU humanitarian aid to Palestine

JUBBET ADH DHIB, West Bank - In Jubbet adh Dhib, a small Palestinian village perched atop a steep hill south of Bethlehem, women say it's them who call the shots. Founded about two years ago, the 22-member women's association stepped in to improve living conditions for the underserviced village with 162 residents; most of the men work in Israel as day labourers.

alaraby
09/13/2017
Issa Amro and Palestine's struggle for freedom of speech

Amro had been in PA custody since September 4, when he'd turned himself in to the Palestinian security forces after being summoned for interrogation. In the incriminating post, he had criticised the PA for arresting Ayman Qawasmeh, a local radio journalist whose station had been shut down in an Israeli army raid a few days earlier.

InfoMigrants
08/07/2017
'The game' is on for refugees stuck at Serbian-Croatian border

An old factory in the outskirts of Šid, a sleepy town at Serbia's northwestern border with Croatia, is strewn with the remains of lives lived on the run: Broken shoes, discarded clothes, plastic spoons and demolished tents lie amid fragments of bulldozed walls and shattered windows.

DW.COM
07/17/2017
Their last resort: refugees in Greece go on hunger strike

A day after receiving news that his brother and two fellow asylum seekers had begun a hunger strike in the Moria detention center on the Greek island of Lesbos, Arash Hampay started his protest. He went down to the port of Mytilene, one the biggest cities on the island and settled in the main square, holding a cardboard sign that read "refugees are not criminals."

Atharna
Atharna | Olive Wood Carving in Bethlehem

Bethlehem and the nearby villages of Beit Jala and Beit Sahour are the heart of Palestine's olive wood carving industry today. Over 120 workshops and factories exist in this area, mostly small family-run businesses. The products are sold to tourists and pilgrims who pass through Bethlehem and include not only religious artifacts but also ornamental boxes, earrings and other souvenirs.

Qantara.de
05/22/2017
Middle East peace process: Playing the Trump card?

Fond of boasting about his deal-making capabilities, U.S. president Donald Trump has oozed confidence in the run-up to his visit to Israel and the Occupied Territories. Whether he will prove a mediating or an alienating influence remains to be seen. By Ylenia Gostoli

Aljazeera
05/20/2017
How Israel is targeting Palestinian institutions

Jerusalem - When Israeli police showed up at the maps and survey department of the Arab Studies Society's office in Jerusalem last month, director Khalil Tufakji was surprised to receive a six-month shutdown order. Police proceeded to confiscate computers and the main server, along with posters and maps that had hung on the walls.

Aljazeera
04/25/2017
How Israel denies rights to Palestinian prisoners

In a photograph widely shared on social media this month, Kifah Quzmar, a final-year business student at Birzeit University near Ramallah, wears a red-and-white keffiyeh and a somewhat defiant look. The difference between the 28-year-old and tens of other Palestinian students and youth arrested in recent weeks is perhaps that his story made it out to the rest of the world.

Aljazeera
04/23/2017
Israel-Europe gas deal sparks criticism

Ramallah - An Israel-Europe gas pipeline deal aimed at turning Israel into a major energy exporter in the Mediterranean has come under criticism from Palestinians, particularly as the besieged Gaza Strip continues to suffer from a crippling power crisis.

Aljazeera
03/17/2017
Palestinians bury activist Basel al-Araj

Hundreds of Palestinians have paid their respects to slain activist and youth movement leader Basil al-Araj. A funeral procession that started from his family home in al-Walaja, a village near Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank, went on till well into the evening on Friday.

Aljazeera
02/26/2017
Jabal Mukaber faces Israel's collective punishment

Jabal Mukaber, Occupied East Jerusalem - From the terrace of her home in Jabal Mukaber, a neighbourhood perched on the steep hills of occupied East Jerusalem, Manwa al-Qanbar looks over the checkpoint dividing it from a-Sheikh Saad, where part of her family still lives.

Aljazeera
02/24/2017
Palestinians decry West Bank industrial zone expansion

Salfit, occupied West Bank - Standing by the side of a highway near the main gates to Ariel West, an Israeli industrial zone in the heart of the West Bank district of Salfit, Jamal Omar Fazaa makes a sweeping gesture with his hand. "This is my family's land, exactly 186 dunums [18 hectares]," he tells Al Jazeera.

Aljazeera
11/22/2016
Israel slammed over its 'war on NGOs'

Jerusalem - Last August, Pam Bailey, an American citizen and secretary of the Gaza-based Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor, was denied entry to Israel upon arrival at Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion airport. Israeli authorities detained her for 11 hours, while the airline retained her passport until she landed back on US soil.

Aljazeera
10/15/2016
'Bad Palestinians' under Israel's collective punishment

Bani Naim, Hebron - In mid-August, Avigdor Lieberman, Israel's defence minister, announced that Israel's policy towards Palestinians in the occupied West Bank would include "colour-coding" its communities into "good" and "bad". "We will implement a differential policy," said Lieberman, who belongs to the far-right, nationalist Yisrael Beiteinu (Israel our Home) party.

Aljazeera
09/13/2016
The day I met my father in an Israeli jail

Al-Eizariya, occupied West Bank - This summer, 18-year-old Yara al-Sharabati was allowed to be in the same room as her father, who is serving a life sentence in an Israeli prison, for the first time in 12 years. She was finally allowed to hug him.

Aljazeera
08/23/2016
Israeli museum transfer sets 'dangerous precedent'

Occupied East Jerusalem - At the entrance to the Rockefeller Archaeological Museum, an old floor plan maps out the rooms that make up its collection. Artefacts from various historical periods were brought here during the British Mandate, with the museum founded in 1930.

Aljazeera
08/19/2016
Gaza headed for 'environmental catastrophe'

Gaza City - Water may be a highly valued commodity the world over - but in al-Shati refugee camp north of Gaza City, it is like gold. Along this small stretch of the Mediterranean coast, all it takes to work that out is turning on a tap: When it is there at all, the water is salty, or sometimes cloudy.

Qantara.de
Rawabi - the West Bank's first planned city (photo essay)

Rawabi (″the hills″ in Arabic) - vision of Nablus-born entrepreneur and billionaire Bashar al-Masri - is the first planned Palestinian city and the largest private sector project in Palestinian history. Mockingly referred to by some as ″the first Palestinian settlement", Rawabi is not without its critics, who argue it merely serves to sugarcoat the Israeli occupation.

Aljazeera
03/26/2016
Reviving the art of cinema in Gaza City

Gaza City - The hall of the Red Crescent Society building in Gaza City quickly filled up. Groups of young people sat together in rows, their loud chatter subsiding as the lights dimmed and the screen lit up with the opening scenes of Leila's Birthday, a 2008 film by Gaza-born director Rashid Masharawi.

Qantara.de
06/13/2016
PalFest 2016: Interview with Palestinian poet Jehan Bseiso: Breaking the cultural siege on...

From 21 - 26 May, the Palestine Festival of Literature toured cities in the West Bank and Israel. In attendance was Jehan Bseiso, a young Palestinian poet. With two anthologies to her name and online publications with ″Electronic Intifada″ and ″The Palestine Chronicle″, Jehan is currently working on a poetry collection called ″Conversations Continued″ - a compilation of real, misheard and misremembered conversations.

Aljazeera
05/28/2016
The vulnerability of Palestinian women in Israel

Jaffa, Israel - "I think twice before going out to Tel Aviv. I calculate how long the trip is, how long it will take, what the route is," said Sawsan Kurdi, a 53-year-old mother of six from Jaffa. "We're talking about traditional women with a headscarf," she added.

Qantara.de
05/30/2016
Breaking the Silence: The ″turncoat″ sons of Israel

Founded 11 years ago, Breaking the Silence has collected and published over 1,100 mostly anonymous testimonies from IDF (Israel Defence Forces) veterans that document army violations against Palestinians. Earlier this month, an Israeli court heard a petition filed by the state attorney to force the organisation to reveal the identity of some of the testifiers.

Qantara.de
05/23/2016
Jordan and the Syrian refugees: Across a great divide

In mid-2013, Jordan stopped letting Syrian refugees freely through its borders and shut all but two of the 45 informal crossings. The current policy of only permitting the war-wounded to enter the country, while in itself commendable, is separating families and leaving people with disabilities and in need of constant care to fend for themselves in Jordan.

Qantara.de
Remembering Jaffa

Each year on 15 May, Palestinians across the world commemorate the Nakba, or ″catastrophe″: the 1948 displacement of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians following Israel′s declaration of independence. In 2011, the Knesset passed a law that authorises the Finance Minister to reduce or withdraw state funding from organisations that reject Israel′s existence as a Jewish and democratic state, or that remember Israel′s Independence Day as a day of mourning.

Aljazeera
05/12/2016
How Israel forces more Palestinians out of Jerusalem

Jerusalem - Tucked away on a steep, potholed street in Sur Baher, a suburb in the southeastern hills of Jerusalem, Sarah Ali Dwayat's apartment sits empty. On the front porch, a large banner bears the photographs of five teenagers from the neighbourhood currently imprisoned by Israel. One of them is her 19-year-old son, Abed.

Qantara.de
04/13/2016
What′s next for ″cultural resistance″?

Based in the Jenin refugee camp, the Freedom Theatre is one of the best-known Palestinian cultural institutions, particularly abroad. The festival opened on 4 April with a silent march to protest the unsolved murder of Juliano Mer Khamis, one of the theatre′s co-founders, who was assassinated exactly five years ago.

Aljazeera
03/02/2016
Israel 'closing in' on Palestinian village in Galilee

Ramya, Galilee - Abu Nazeeh's home is a simple, one-floor, wood-covered structure with a corrugated iron roof. Amid the surrounding luxury apartment blocks built of pink-hued stone, it feels impermanent. Inside, however, the overstuffed couches and kitschy knick-knacks conjure feelings of stability - as does Abu Nazeeh's resolution to make this a home, despite the continuing threat of eviction.

Aljazeera
02/16/2016
The paradox of being an Arab member of Israel's Knesset

Last week, three members of the Israeli Knesset, Jamal Zahalka, Hanin Zoabi and Basel Ghattas, were suspended for attending a meeting with the families of Palestinians killed by Israeli forces while allegedly carrying out attacks and whose bodies were held by Israel.

Aljazeera
02/01/2016
Q&A: Jailed Palestinian man to be 'either free or dead'

Dura, occupied West Bank - Palestinian journalist Mohammed al-Qiq has been on hunger strike for more than two months to protest his detention without charge or trial. Qiq, a reporter for the Saudi-owned TV channel Almajd and a father of two, is one of 660 Palestinians being held in administrative detention - the highest number since 2008, according to data released in December.

Aljazeera
01/17/2016
Palestinian teen could face 'maximum sentence'

Occupied West Bank - The trial of Ahmed Manasra, a 13-year-old Palestinian boy, charged by an Israeli court with two counts of attempted murder, is expected to resume today in a Jerusalem court. Manasra could face the maximum sentence of up to 20 years in prison, his lawyers said.

Aljazeera
01/19/2016
How settlement businesses sustain Israeli occupation

Companies doing business in Israeli settlements contribute to and profit from land confiscations and the violation of Palestinian workers' rights - and support the settlements which are illegal under international law, according to a Human Rights Watch report. The report, published on Tuesday by the rights group, is titled Occupation, Inc: How Settlement Businesses Contribute to Israel's Violations of Palestinian Rights.

Aljazeera
12/28/2015
Palestinians unite to help victims of home demolitions

Shuafat refugee camp, occupied East Jerusalem - More than 1,000 Israeli troops entered Shuafat refugee camp in the occupied West Bank earlier this month to demolish the family home of Ibrahim al-Akkari, who was shot dead by Israeli forces after ramming his car into a group of people in Jerusalem last year, killing a soldier and a civilian and wounding 13 others.

Aljazeera
11/22/2015
Palestinian Campus: 'A wall of fear has come down'

Abu Dis, occupied West Bank - Debris and broken glass were strewn across the al-Quds University campus in Abu Dis on a recent afternoon, evidence of one of many recent incursions by Israeli forces since October. Nearby, a group of students carrying Palestinian flags marched off campus towards Israel's separation wall.

Aljazeera
10/08/2015
Hebron in turmoil as unrest engulfs West Bank

Hebron, Occupied West Bank - Fayez Janjoun's cart at a fruit and vegetable market near Hebron's Old City was still full of his peppers and cucumbers - even though it was already well into the afternoon.

Qantara.de
01/12/2015
Youth reject ″sectarian″ recruitment to the Israeli army

Conscientious objection among the Druze community is gathering support, particularly among the young men who are expected to serve in the Israeli army. One organisation that seeks to support those fighting the call to join up is ″Urfod″ or ″Refuse: your people will protect you".

Aljazeera
12/18/2015
Final curtain looms for historic Palestinian theatre

Occupied East Jerusalem - The future of the Palestinian National Theatre is fraught with uncertainty as the organisation struggles with declining audiences and high operating costs. Located in the American Colony neighbourhood of East Jerusalem, the theatre - also known as el-Hakawati, meaning "storyteller" - has amassed a debt of more than $150,000, according to director Amer Khalil.

Aljazeera
11/18/2015
Olive harvest in Palestine 'was very happy time'

Turmusaya, Occupied West Bank - The olive harvest season is in full swing across the West Bank. For Najla Nassan and her six brothers and sisters, it is an occasion to be together. They chat and joke as they comb the olives on to plastic sheets placed on the ground.

Aljazeera
10/31/2015
Remembering Yitzhak Rabin

Tens of thousands of Israelis have gathered in Tel Aviv to commemorate the late Israeli leader Yitzhak Rabin, who was assassinated by an ultranationalist Israeli 20 years ago. "Two decades have gone by, and still we remain overly focused on the wounds of the past, and not enough on building the future," Israeli President Reuven Rivlin addressed the crowd.

Aljazeera
10/28/2015
Oz: Israel's prison for Palestinian children

East Jerusalem - Since the beginning of October, hundreds of young men from Jerusalem have spent the night in Oz - not the magical fairy-tale land, but a police station in Jabal al-Mukaber. Like the rest of occupied East Jerusalem, the neighbourhood is mired in neglect and has become a scene of regular clashes between Palestinian youth and Israeli security forces.

Qantara.de
Waiting for Holot

At the end of last month, 1,200 asylum seekers were released from Holot, an ′open′ detention centre in the middle of the Naqab (Negev) desert, which began operating in December 2013. But thousands of others are now eligible to be summoned to the facility, under new and expanded criteria.

Aljazeera
08/16/2015
Neighbours gather to protest West Bank eviction order

Silwan, occupied East Jerusalem - For days, neighbours, friends and family have been gathering at the home of Abdullah Abu Nab in the East Jerusalem neighbourhood of Silwan, hoping to stop his family's looming eviction. A recent ruling from Israel's Supreme Court gave Abu Nab's family - comprised of 16 people living in two separate homes - until August 11 to leave.

Aljazeera
08/20/2015
Future unclear for Palestinian hunger striker

Ashkelon, Israel - At the Barzilai Medical Center in the southern Israeli city of Ashkelon, Maazouzeh Allaan's eyes filled with tears as she watched a video of a recent demonstration in support of her hunger-striking son. "Detention robbed him of everything - his home, his work, his clients, his freedom," Maazouzeh told Al Jazeera.

Qantara.de
08/10/2015
Squeezed between occupation and civil war

The Golan Heights were unilaterally annexed by Israel in 1981. At the time, many Syrian residents fled. Most of those who remained belong to the Druze community.

Aljazeera
07/24/2015
West Bank village anxiously awaits demolition

Khirbet Susiya, occupied West Bank - As Palestinians in the West Bank celebrated the Eid al-Fitr holiday, the end of Ramadan was marred for residents of Khirbet Susiya by fears that demolition orders would be carried out on their homes.

Aljazeera
08/01/2015
For Druze in the Golan Heights, 'Syria is just an idea'

Until recently, residents of Druze villages in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights had maintained close economic, familial and emotional ties to Syria. But the civil war raging in Syria has broken or altered these relationships. "Syria is an idea for us, not life.

Aljazeera
07/06/2015
Teen's death highlights Israel abuse of West Bank youth

Occupied West Bank - In the living room of the al-Kasba family home, a large commemorative poster occupies an entire wall, depicting the portraits of two boys against a faded background of Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa Mosque. It says that Yasser and Samer al-Kasba, 12 and 16, were killed 40 days apart from each other during the first year of the second Intifada.

Qantara.de
07/08/2015
Getting down to business

Twelve months ago, Gaza was mired in a conflict that left 2,251 Palestinians dead and more than 100,000 homeless. The economy of the Gaza Strip has not even begun to make a recovery. Despite this bleak outlook, some young people - and some young women in particular - refuse to give in and are looking to launch start-up companies.

Qantara.de
04/27/2015
Archaeology of a dispossession

Susiya is a small Palestinian village in the West Bank. In 1986, when the remains of a synagogue were found in the village, the site was declared a national park and the land confiscated. Residents were relocated to nearby agricultural lands.

Qantara.de
01/13/2015
Left out in the cold

Every day, hundreds of people go to the Shamali warehouse in Shejaia, Gaza, where they hope to get the cement they need to re-build their homes after the devastating Gaza offensive of summer 2014. Almost five months on, reconstruction has virtually not begun.

Middle East Eye
Film festival on the frontline of a conflict over memory

A Palestinian Film Festival took place in the Israeli coastal city of Haifa on 4-6 March 2015. The event was organised by Zochrot, a small Israeli NGO devoted to raising awareness of the Nakba ('catastrophe' in Arabic) amongst the Israeli public.

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