World Bulletin / News Desk
Hundreds of demonstrators marched on the offices of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday to protest against diplomatic contacts with Israel and to denounce police violence at a previous rally.
Chanting for an end to the Oslo accords, the flag-waving crowd cut through Ramallah's crammed city centre under the watchful eye of scores of plainclothes security officers.
Heavy handed security forces intervened on Sunday to prevent a smaller group of protesters from reaching Abbas's headquarters in the occupied West Bank, and beat some journalists who tried to cover the event.
But a government source said police were under orders on Tuesday to allow the protesters to take their message to the gleaming stone walls of Abbas's compound, which is also the burial place of previous Palestinian president, Yasser Arafat.
"The streets are open to us today, and that's the result of a political decision. They realise the violence before made them look bad," said Ali Nakhle, a student who joined approximately 400 other, mainly youthful protesters in downtown Ramallah.
While there were no slogans directed specifically against Abbas himself, the protesters were scathing about a recent announcement that the Palestinian president was ready to meet Israeli Vice Premier Shaul Mofaz.
The planned encounter would have been the highest-level meeting between the two sides since direct peace talks broke down in 2010. However, it was abruptly called off at the weekend in apparent response to Palestinian public opinion.
"We want your head Mofaz," the crowds chanted on Tuesday, adding: "The people want the fall of Oslo," adapting a common refrain against the ruling elites in countless Arab Spring protests over the past 18 months.
The 1993 Oslo Accords gave the Palestinians limited self-rule in the occupied territories, and set out guidelines for future peace talks to end the Middle East conflict.
However, a lasting deal has proved elusive and the latest round of talks collapsed two years ago in a dispute over continued Jewish settlement building in the occupied West Bank.
The protesters, who do not appear to belong to any political faction, called for a fresh rally on Thursday, hoping their grass-root movement, which first took to the streets at the weekend, will gather momentum.
The demonstrations have come at a particularly delicate moment for Abbas's Palestinian Authority, which is facing a severe cash crisis because of a failure by some donor states, particularly in the Gulf, to hand over promised funds.
Finance Minister Nabil Kassis told reporters on Tuesday that the government could not pay its workers this month because the coffers were empty.
Since July 7, Israel has pummeled the Gaza Strip – from air, land and sea – with the ostensible aim of halting Palestinian rocket fire.
At least nine civilians and four soldiers were killed within 24 hours amid clashes between Ukrainian army and pro-Russian separatists, officials say.
Demonstrations take place across the UK in support of Palestine and in protest against the Israeli onlaught on Gaza.
Turkey also removed about 700 personnel from the country, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry told reporters at the U.S. ambassador's residence in Paris.
It was not clear if Riyadh al-Adhdah, who heads Baghdad's Provincial Council and belongs to the Sunni Iraqi Islamic Party, had been kidnapped by militiamen, who often wear military outfits, or detained by the authorities.
The Americans cannot accept an Iraqi leader who won’t serve their imperial oil and military interests, while Iran would like to see another Maliki who can be used as a tool for advancing Tehran’s Shiite consolidation foreign policy.
Erdogan accused Egypt of lacking a sincere approach to the Palestinian issue.
Protestors, including rabbis, denounce Zionism and call for a free Palestine in the name of Judaism.
Two civilians wounded after Armenian soldiers violate a cease fire, according to an Azerbaijani defense ministry statement.
Report says creatures believed to be werewolves arrive around full moon, killing local goats, sucking their blood and tearing out their hearts and livers.
Najib Razak is setto visit the Netherlands on Wednesday to discuss an investigation into a plane downing that claimed 193 Dutch lives.
Anton Gerashchenko, an aide to the country's Interior Minister, said the mayor of Kremenchuk, Oleh Babayev, was killed.
In a meeting with the leaders of Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, Obama said most migrant children would not qualify for humanitarian relief or refugee status.
Fighters from the group captured and killed at least 50 members of the army's 17th Division after ambushing them outside Raqqa.
The food scandal broke after a TV report on Sunday showed staff at Shanghai Husi Food using long expired meat and picking up food from the floor to add back to the mix.
There is not a single person who can't see that the West's labelling of those who oppose the Zionist occupation as anti-semites is not free of Islamophobic undertones.