Bethlehem – Ma’an/Agencies – Israeli police arrested a West Bank settler last month for a string of killings and murder plots, including the slaying of two Palestinians, according to reports on Sunday after a gag order was lifted.
An immigrant from the US, Yaakov Teitel, 37, was arrested in Jerusalem on 7 October. According to the Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth, Teitel confessed to authorities to shooting to death a Palestinian shepherd south of Hebron in 1997 and killing an East Jerusalem taxi driver the same year.
Teitel is also suspected to have carried out a series of bomb attacks, including one that seriously wounded a teenager from a Messianic Jewish family in the settlement of Ariel, and another that lightly wounded liberal Hebrew University historian Zeev Sternhell.
He also was also allegedly responsible for a blast that damaged a police car at the time of a Gay Pride Parade.
He even claimed during his questioning to involvement in the attack on a gay-lesbian youth club in Tel Aviv in August, in which two people were killed. Israeli security officials said however that there is not sufficient evidence to link him to the shooting.
During a search of his home, police discovered rifles, handguns and explosive materials; they were unable, however, to find the gun which he allegedly used to kill the Palestinians, according to the newspaper Haaretz.
Teitel, a resident of the northern West Bank settlement of Shvut Rachel, near Nablus, was born in the US state of Florida and began travelling to Israel and the West Bank in the 1990s before immigrating to Israel in 2000.
A profile in Haaretz states that Teitel became involved in the “Hilltop youth” subculture of the Israeli settler movement, which called for radical grassroots mobilization.
After the March 1997 shooing of Palestinian shepherd Issa Jibril, Teitel told authorities that he had come to the country with the specific aim of shooting Palestinians in revenge for suicide bombings.
After learning of the arrest, medical worker Ayed Jibril recounted to Ma’an the killing of his father, Issa Jibril. The shooting took place on 8 March 1997 in the village of Ad-Derat, near the Israeli settlements of Susiya, Carmiel, and Ma’on, in the hills south of Hebron.
“A settlers’ car drove up close to my father and shot and killed him,” he said in a phone interview. “I was herding the sheep. My father was heading toward me and was taken by surprise by a settler who shot him.”
“The Israeli police were at the scene and took the body for an autopsy in [Jerusalem police medical facility] Abu Kbir and carried out an investigation,” he added.
Ayed Jibril also called on the Israeli government to immediately issue the harshest sentence on the man who killed his father.
posted by gr1m_reaper @ Sunday, November 01, 2009 0 comments
Saturday, October 31, 2009
Western Boats Loot Somali Fish
MOGADISHU, Somalia – Somali pirates who are demanding $7 million in ransom for a British sailing couple said Saturday that boats from other countries are plundering Somalia’s fish-rich waters.
Ahmed Gadaf, who described himself as a spokesman for the pirates, said Western fishing vessels “harass” local fishermen and destroy their nets. Gadaf spoke to The Associated Press by satellite phone.
Gadaf says the British couple, Paul and Rachel Chandler, are safe and will not be harmed.
The British government on Saturday reiterated its refusal to ransom the pair, saying in a statement that officials would not make any “substantive concessions to hostage-takers, and that includes the payment of ransom.”
The Chandlers were headed to Tanzania in their boat, the Lynn Rival, when a distress signal was sent Oct. 23. The British navy found their empty yacht on Thursday, and both have been in sporadic contact with the British media since.
Illegal fishing off the coast of Somalia stirs strong passions in the country. The country’s prime minister, Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke, said in a speech Wednesday that many countries are fishing illegally in Somali waters and have pushed formerly profitable Somali fishermen into the pirate trade.
He also said during Wednesday’s appearance at London-based Chatham House think tank that many pirates are former fishermen “responding to the loss and disappearance of their livelihoods.”
Helene Bours, an expert on fisheries in Africa who works as a consultant for non-governmental organizations in Africa and Europe, said she was skeptical that international overfishing in Somalia had a significant effect on the rise of piracy.
“The extent to which the piracy business has developed is way beyond a few fishermen turning (into) pirates,” she said.
Bours most international ships operated far from the Somali coast in order to bring in deep-sea fish, and would not be competing with smaller Somali fishing boats working closer to shore. She cautioned however, that the lack of reliable information from the chaotic country made any assessment unreliable.
Sharmarke said he was aware of extensive foreign fishing off Somalia’s coast.
“I shall not name names, but suffice to say many countries are fishing illegally in Somali waters,” he said. “We estimate that the value of the fish being taken from our waters is perhaps hundreds of millions of dollars.”
Pirate attacks have increased the last several weeks after the recent end of the monsoon season. An international armada is patrolling the region to try to stop the attacks.