The view from Korea (24 June 2013)

In its Protection of Civilians report for the period 4-17 June, the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs occupied Palestinian territory reported that in 2013 Israeli forces have killed 3 Palestinians and injured 2,593 others and demolished 273 Palestinian structures leaving 501 Palestinians displaced. In the two-week period covered by the report, 17 Palestinian-owned structures were destroyed and 35 persons displaced. There were also 191 incidents of settler violence leading to either Palestinian casualties of property damage which includes damage to 540 trees in the reported period alone. For the period 13-19 June, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights is reporting that Israeli forces carried out 82 incursions into the West Bank.

Israel’s brutal occupation of Palestine continues, but a rare cultural achievement is being celebrated as a victory for all Palestinians. Yesterday 23-year-old Muhammad Assaf from Khan Younis in the Gaza Strip took home the title of Arab Idol in the television show of the same name. Palestinian flags were waved by many in the crowd as he performed on stage after he become the first Palestinian to win the title. Shortly after it was announced that he will serve as a ambassador for the UN’s largest agency, UNRWA.