Israel MKs visit Temple Mount; UN: settlements ‘obstacle’ to two state solution

What We’re Reading


Is Netanyahu changing rules around al-Aqsa Mosque?,

Two members of the Israeli parliament visited the al-Aqsa Mosque compound on Tuesday for the first time in two years.

Palestinians slam Israeli decision to allow MKs on Temple Mount,

The PA foreign ministry says the move is part of Israeli efforts to thwart the peace process. PM Hamdallah called on the UN to protect the Al-Aqsa Mosque.

Holy access: The twists and turns of the two-year ban on MKs at the Temple Mount,

Two Jewish Knesset members visited the Temple Mount in Jerusalem on Tuesday for the first time since October 2015, when the government barred MKs from going there as part of an attempt to reduce tensions amid a wave of terror attacks against Israelis that was linked to the flashpoint site.

Jordanian official demands Netanyahu reinstate Al-Aqsa ban on Knesset members,

A Jordanian government official condemned Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision to lift a ban on Israeli Knesset members from visiting Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in occupied East Jerusalem on Tuesday, calling the move “irresponsible.”

Occupation/Human rights

UN: Israel settlements big hurdle to two-state solution,

Antonio Guterres condemns ‘illegal’ Israeli settlement construction, calling it an ‘obstacle’ that needs to be removed.

WATCH: Settlers sexually harass Palestinian woman, soldiers stand by,

Settlers in Hebron use loudspeaker to disparage Islam and sexually harass a Palestinian woman in the middle of the night.

How I stopped ignoring NGO Monitor and started fighting back,

“For years I have remained silent as Gerald Steinberg and NGO Monitor have harassed anti-occupation groups in Israel-Palestine, spreading falsehoods about us in order to shut us down. Now is the time to speak out,” writes Israeli human rights lawyer Michael Sfard.

Suspected Settler violence: Cars torched and hate graffiti sprayed in Um Safa,

Last night at about 2:30 A.M., Wasim Bader, 28, a married father of one, who lives in the Palestinian village of Um Safa, north of Ramallah, was sitting in his living room when he noticed a car stopping at a junction close to his home. In a testimony he gave to B’Tselem later that day, Bader described what happened next.

84 in Two Weeks: Sharp Rise in Palestinians Detained by Israel Without Trial,

More Palestinians were detained by Israel without trial at the beginning of August than during any other month this year, according to the Palestinian Prisoners Society. The NGO, which supports Palestinians incarcerated in Israeli jails, and their families, had no explanation for the sudden surge in the number of individuals under what is called administrative detention.

Hebron settlement receives separate municipal standing,

38 years after their arrival, Israeli settlers in Hebron have been awarded the official status of an independent settlement, in contravention of a 1997 agreement between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

Arab League chief condemns PM’s pledge to not evacuate settlements,

Arab League chief Ahmed Abul Gheit on Tuesday “strongly denounced” remarks by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ruling out any further evacuation of Israeli settlements in the West Bank.

US-Israeli/Palestinian relations

Why rabbis like me oppose Israel’s ban on BDS activists,

“We need not support the BDS movement to recognize that our communal institutions are succumbing to leaders and donors who uphold and promote a very narrow version of acceptable discourse in our community,” writes Laurie Zimmerman.

Sebastian Gorka Accuses ‘Liberal’ Jews of ‘Betraying’ US-Israel Relations,

Gorka’s decision to lash out at “liberal” Jews and The Forward was driven by the publication’s coverage of his ties to a Nazi-collaborating group (characterized as such by The State Department), Vitezi Rend, in Hungary and his apparent endorsement of a racist and anti-Semitic Hungarian militia in a 2007 television interview.