Al-Aqsa Intifada enters sixth year

Al-Aqsa Intifada has entered its sixth year amidst escalating Israeli attacks on Palestinian territories.

    Israeli air strikes on Gaza buildings continue unabated

    Israeli warplanes on Wednesdsay continued to target different areas of Gaza city and the northern Gaza Strip.

    Israeli helicopters have bombed a Fatah office and a Palestinian security building in Gaza city and raids are taking place in many West Bank cities and towns as well.

    Early on Wednesday, some 15 Israeli military vehicles raided the West Bank city of Tulkarim, Aljazeera's correspondent reported.

    Israeli forces also stormed the offices of Hamas and Islamic Jihad in the city, the correspondent said.

    Separately, Israeli forces raided the West Bank city of Qalqilya, launching search operations inside the headquarters of the city's charity organisations.

    Worse off

    Shireen Abu Aqla, Aljazeera's correspondent reporting from Jerusalem, noted that the al-Aqsa Intifada started from the city following Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's controversial visit to the al-Aqsa Mosque compound five years ago.

    Flames of the Intifada later spread to other Palestinian territories, she said.

    Islamic Jihad chief in Gaza
    Khalil was killed by Israel

    Living conditions in Jerusalem for Palestinians are now worse than at any point in recent memory, she said.

    The dominant event of the five years has been the construction of the separation barrier. The wall has hemmed in Palestinians of Jerusalem, a city now isolated from its surroundings as well as from many internal towns and neighbourhoods.

    The political, economic, and social conditions of Palestinians in the city are precarious, Shireen Abu Aqla said. Observers believe that Israel has changed the city's geographic contours to strengthen settlement activities and eliminate Palestinian presence.

    Totally cut off

    No major resistance activities can be observed in Jerusalem now except for regular protests even though about 55,000 Palestinian inhabitants of the city have been completely cut off by the separation barrier, she added.

    On the one hand, Jerusalem's Israeli settlements are multiplying and, on the other hand, Palestinian organisations have all been closed down, Shireen Abu Aqla added.

    Israel even stands in the way of Jerusalem Palestinians' participation in any elections, she said.

    SOURCE: Aljazeera


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