Newspapers Review: Dailies Highlight Gruesome Murder of Jordanian Pilot

RAMALLAH, February 4, 2015 (WAFA) – The gruesome burning of 26-year-old captured Jordanian fighter pilot Moaz al-Kassasbeh by the so-called Islamic State in Iraq and Syria group (ISIS) hit the front page headlines of the three Palestinian Arabic dailies.

The three papers reported that al-Kassasbeh was burnt alive by ISIS after being captured since December 24.

Al-Quds and al-Hayat al-Jadida reported that the Jordanian government has vowed a take a firm response to the execution of al-Kassasbeh and to execute the Iraqi female suicide bomber Sajida al-Rishawi together with a group of “Jihadists”.

They also reported that King Abdullah II has cut short his visit to the United States and called Jordanians to unite, while al-Ayyam quoted him as stating: “The brave pilot was killed while defending his creed, homeland and nation.”

The three dailies also reported in this regard that President Mahmoud Abbas expressed condolences for al-Kassasbeh’s execution.

Al-Ayyam and al-Quds added in this regard that a march was organized by Palestinians in Ramallah in solidarity with the Jordanian people.

Al-Quds printed a personal photo for al-Kassasbeh in his uniform, while al-Ayyam printed another photo purportedly featuring the caged fighter pilot dressed in an orange jumpsuit and apparently soaked in petrol shortly before a masked ISIS militant lit a trail of petrol that runs to the cage and burns him alive.

With regard to Israeli occupation practices across the West Bank and Gaza Strip, the three dailies reported that the ‘Gate to East Jerusalem’ new protest village was erected by Palestinian activists in Abu Dis in protest of Israeli plans to displace Palestinian Bedouins from their lands to the east of al-Eizariya.

It also reported that 50 dunums of land were bulldozed by Israeli military bulldozers in the Salfit town of Skaka and two commercial facilities were demolished in the Hebron town of Idhna.

Al-Ayyam said that demolition notices were handed by Israeli soldiers to Palestinians in ‘Khalyel al-Loz’ to the east of Bethlehem in order to establish a military post.

Al-Quds reported Hamas sources as affirming preparations are underway for a meeting for the Palestinian factions in the Gaza Strip.

Concerning the Palestinian cabinet’s weekly session, Al-Quds reported that the cabinet has discussed the current financial crisis gripping the Palestinian Authority (PA) and means to confront it.

Al-Hayat al-Jadida reported in this regard that cabinet discussed Israeli threats to reduce electricity supply to the Palestinian Territory and called on Arab states to help the PA confront the financial crisis.

Al-Hayat al-Jadida quoted Minister of Social Affairs Shawqi Al-‘Aiasah as announcing: “No date has been set to pay social affairs benefits.”

The three dailies also reported that eight Arab women were killed and over 30 other people injured in a dreadful traffic accident in the Naqab region.

The three dailies highlighted the resignation of Canadian international law expert William Schabas from his post as the Chairman of the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on the 2014 Gaza-Israel conflict.

Al-Quds and al-Ayyam reported that the mission has proceeded with its work and would timely submit its report despite Schabas’ resignation.

Al-Ayyam and al-Hayat al-Jadida reported that President Mahmoud Abbas has met with a World Bank delegation.

Al-Hayat al-Jadida reported that European Parliamentarians, namely the Socialists and Democrats in the European Union, have called for releasing the Palestinian tax revenues and providing immediate support for the UNRWA.