651 / 15225 Results
  • July 14, 2011

    Unidentified Palestinians fire a total of 6 Qassam rockets fr. Gaza into Israel in 3 barrages in the morning, afternoon, and evening, causing no damage or injuries. In retaliation, the IDF makes...

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  • May 15, 2011

    On the anniversary of the Nakba, 1,000s of Palestinians fr. the West Bank, Gaza, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria stage marches (mostly nonviolent, though some stone throwing) toward the Israeli border...

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  • December 17, 2010

    In the West Bank, the IDF confiscates 50 d. of Palestinian land in Bayt Iksa, northwest of Jerusalem, for construction of a railway linking Jerusalem and Tel Aviv; closing the 50 d. area also cuts...

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  • September 14, 2010

    The 2d round of direct talks opens in Sharm al-Shaykh, Egypt, with Mubarak hosting Abbas, Netanyahu, and Clinton for the first day of meetings with talks now set to continue in Jerusalem on 9/15...

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  • October 20, 2008

    By this date, Palestinian factions have agreed to an Egyptian proposal to resume their national unity dialogue in Cairo on 11/9. Hamas and Fatah are considering a draft memorandum of understanding...

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  • October 19, 2008

    In the first such cross-border incident in Gaza since 9/16, the IDF sends bulldozers and armored vehicles into areas n. of Bayt Hanun to level land along the border. In the West Bank, the IDF...

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  • April 9, 2008

    Four Palestinian gunmen representing Islamic Jihad, the PRCs, and the Mujahiddin Brigades (an AMB offshoot) raid the Nahal Oz fuel depot on the Gaza-Israel border under cover of mortar fire,...

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  • May 3, 2007

    The IDF sends bulldozers, tanks into Gaza nr. Sufa crossing to level land; troops also discover and dismantle 2 roadside bombs. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in...

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  • May 1, 2007

    The Israeli navy fires on Palestinian fishing boats off the coast of Nussayrat r.c., forcing them to return to shore. In the West Bank, the IDF shoots, wounds a Palestinian farmer working in his...

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  • April 10, 2007

    The Israeli navy fires on Palestinian fishing boats off the Gaza border, damaging 3. Palestinian gunmen fire on an IDF observation post on the Gaza border n. of Bayt Hanun; the IDF returns fire;...

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  • August 31, 2006

    The IDF pulls troops back fr. Gaza City ending a 5-day incursion that left at least 19 Palestinians (including 7 civilians) dead, saying troops found 2 smugglers tunnels nr. Qarni crossing. In the...

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  • August 29, 2006

    The IDF continues operations in Gaza City, shelling, firing on, and using drones to fire missiles at any group of Palestinians in the eastern part of the city, killing at least 4 Palestinian...

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  • May 14, 2006

    The IDF raids Qabatya, surrounds the home of senior Islamic Jihad military leader Elias al-Ashkar, killing Ashkar and 4 Islamic Jihad mbrs. in an exchange of fire, sparking massive protests in...

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  • May 13, 2006

    The IDF closes the Qarni crossing for the day; intercepts a Palestinian fishing boat off the s. Gaza coast, arresting 2 fishermen on suspicion of smuggling; conducts arrest raids, house searches...

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  • April 17, 2006

    An Islamic Jihad suicide bomber detonates a device in a Tel Aviv deli, killing 9 Israelis, wounding 59. Abbas condemns the attack, the deadliest since an 8/31/04 bombing killed 16 Israelis in...

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  • March 21, 2006

    Israeli police detain a car carrying 10 Palestinian laborers and explosives btwn. Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, stopping what the Israeli DMin. says is a major bombing attempt meant to disrupt Israel’s...

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  • March 19, 2006

    Israel extends the seal on the West Bank and Gaza (imposed on 3/11) until after the 3/28 Israeli elections. The IDF arrests 3 unarmed Palestinians attempting to sneak into Israel fr. n. Gaza to...

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  • February 5, 2006

    The IDF reopens the Qarni crossing (closed on 1/14); conducts an air strike on 2 cars driving in Gaza City, assassinating Islamic Jihad mbrs. Adnan Bustan, Jihad al-Sawafiri; patrols in and around...

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  • January 23, 2006

    The IDF announces that it is suspending all military operations in the Palestinian areas until after the 1/25 elections, will act only in response to immediate threats; will allow PA security...

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  • January 19, 2006

    An Islamic Jihad suicide bomber fr. Nablus detonates a device in a Tel Aviv restaurant, killing only himself, wounding 24 Israelis (1 critically). The PA accuses Islamic Jihad of trying to derail...

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  • August 11, 2005

    The IDF conducts arrests raids, house searches nr. Jenin, Tulkarm. Some 150,000 Israelis take part in an antidisengagement rally in Tel Aviv sponsored by theYESHA settlers’ council. (IMEMC 8/12;...

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  • July 24, 2005

    Palestinian gunmen representing the AMB, Islamic Jihad, the PRCs fire on a Jewish settler vehicle nr. Gaza’s Kissufim crossing, killing 2 Israeli civilians (visiting Jewish settler relatives),...

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  • April 23, 2005

    The IDF arrests 7 unarmed Palestinians attempting to sneak into Israel fr. Gaza (5 nr. Kissufim crossing, 2 in central Gaza) to seek work; raids a photo exhibit sponsored by Hamas in Yassid nr....

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  • March 18, 2005

    The IDF imposes a curfew on Allar nr. Tulkarm, raids and occupies a girls school and 4 Palestinian homes as observation sites, detains 10s of Palestinians for interrogation; also conducts arrest...

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  • March 10, 2005

    The IDF raids Tulkarm, assassinates Islamic Jihad mbr. Muhammad Abu Khazna (Muhammad Abu Khalil) whom Israel alleges planned the 2/25 Tel Aviv bombing; bulldozes his home. Abbas condemns the raid...

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  • March 8, 2005

    The IDF fires on residential areas of Rafah; conducts arrest raids, house searches in al-Simba nr. Hebron; arrests 6 Islamic Jihad mbrs. in Jenin in connection with the 2/25 Tel Aviv bombing;...

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  • March 1, 2005

    Israeli security officials say they now believe that a renegade Islamic Jihad cell fr. Jenin, commanded fr. outside the territories, was responsible for the 2/25 bombing. IDF severely beats a...

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  • February 28, 2005

    The IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in ‘Azun nr. Qalqilya. The IDF also imposes a curfew on, conducts searches in the villages of ‘Azmut, Dayr al-Hatab, Salim nr. Nablus. Palestinian...

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  • February 27, 2005

    The IDF steps up military actions in response to the 2/25 Tel Aviv bombing, placing curfews on Alar, Saida villages nr. Tulkarm; conducts overnight arrest raids, house searches nr. Tulkarm;...

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  • February 26, 2005

    A Damascus-based Islamic Jihad cell claims responsibility for the 2/25 Tel Aviv bombing, noting the end of the unofficial 1-mo. truce on 2/25 and stating that Israel had to be punished for cease-...

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Unidentified Palestinians fire a total of 6 Qassam rockets fr. Gaza into Israel in 3 barrages in the morning, afternoon, and evening, causing no damage or injuries. In retaliation, the IDF makes air strikes on 4 Hamas training facilities in Gaza City and Khan Yunis and on 2 smuggling tunnels on the Rafah border, causing no reported injuries. Israeli naval vessels fire on Palestinian fishing boats off the c. Gaza coast, forcing them to return to shore. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 3 villages nr. Ramallah and 3 nr. Salfit in the morning and in Jericho late at night. (YA 7/14; JP 7/15; PCHR 7/20; OCHA 7/22)

Inspired by the Arab Spring, 10s of young Israelis set up a tent camp on Rothschild Boulevard, Tel Aviv’s high-end shopping district, to protest high housing costs (up 20% compared to summer 2010). (Guardian, HA 7/16)

On the anniversary of the Nakba, 1,000s of Palestinians fr. the West Bank, Gaza, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria stage marches (mostly nonviolent, though some stone throwing) toward the Israeli border. In Lebanon, though troops, riot police, and UNIFIL soldiers deploy to prevent marchers fr. reaching the border, a large group succeeds in reaching the border fence nr. Hizballah-controlled Maroun al-Ras village, where they throw stones at IDF troops. IDF troops open fire into Lebanon, leaving 10 Palestinians dead and at least 112 wounded. Palestinians refugees marching fr. Syria knock down the border fence into the Golan Heights, enter the Druze village of Majdal Shams, and rally in the village square, erecting Palestinian flags. IDF troops open fire to drive them back across the border, killing 4 Palestinians and wounding around 200. On the border with Jordan, Jordanian troops fired tear gas and scuffle with some 800 Palestinians, preventing them fr. reaching the border, leaving 14 demonstrators and 3 police officers lightly injured. In Egypt, govt. forces reinforce their border, preventing some 250 Palestinians fr. marching to the Rafah crossing. In Cairo, riot police fire tear gas, disperse protesters converging on the Israeli embassy, injuring around 120. On the Gaza border, IDF troops fire live ammunition and artillery at Gazans marching toward the border, wounding at least 125. In the West Bank, IDF troops fire tear gas, rubber-coated steel bullets to disperse around 1,000 stone-throwing Palestinians marching toward the Qalandia crossing (injuring 10s) and violently beat scores of Palestinians marching fr. Palestinian-controlled area A toward Israeli security-controlled area B in Hebron (injuring 10s). A large peaceful rally commemorating the Nakba is held in Ramallah. Numerous smaller and protests clashes are also reported in the West Bank and East Jerusalem; rights groups say some 185 Palestinians have been injured in these clashes over the past 3 days, 153 of them in Jerusalem. Netanyahu accuses the demonstrators of “incitement” and challenging “the very existence of Israel.” Other Israeli officials accuse Iran and Syria of instigating the Palestinians, noting that Syrian security did nothing to prevent Palestinians fr. approaching the border. (DS, IFM, IsRN, JAZ, JP, MA, YA 5/15; Christian Science Monitor, NYT, PCHR, WP, WT 5/16)

Unrelated to the “March to Palestine,” IDF troops fired across the border into Gaza, killing a Palestinian who allegedly was planting an explosive device. Inside Israel, an Israeli Palestinian drives his truck into several cars, a bus, and pedestrians in Tel Aviv, killing 1 Israeli and injuring 17 in what Israeli police say was a deliberate terrorist attack; the driver, who is arrested, strongly denies deliberately harming anyone, saying he lost control of his vehicle when a tire blew. The IDF also patrols in 2 village nr. Qalqilya (arresting 1 Palestinian teenager for throwing stones) and 2 nr. Tulkarm; sends undercover units into Nur al-Shams r.c. nr. Tulkarm late at night, surrounding and raiding a house and arresting 1 Palestinian; conducts other late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around al-‘Arub r.c. and Hebron, and nr. Salfit. Jewish settlers fr. Kiryat Arba settlement in Hebron throw 4 Molotov cocktails at a nearby Palestinian home, causing minor damage. Israel resumes transferring VAT taxes to the PA (see 5/1), having received PA assurances that none of the money would be accessible to Hamas under the new Fatah-Hamas unity deal, but warning that it would reconsider suspending transfers if Hamas was allowed to join a PA govt. (NYT 5/16; PCHR 5/19; OCHA 5/20)

At quarter’s end, fierce fighting is ongoing in Libya and NATO intervention continues. Rebel-held areas increasingly report shortages of food and medical supplies. No reliable figures on casualties are available since independent media access and communications are extremely difficult. Deaths are thought to be well into the 1,000s and perhaps as high as 10,000. (WP 5/16; REU 6/9)

In the West Bank, the IDF confiscates 50 d. of Palestinian land in Bayt Iksa, northwest of Jerusalem, for construction of a railway linking Jerusalem and Tel Aviv; closing the 50 d. area also cuts off Palestinian access to 2,000 d. of olive groves. The IDF also patrols in several villages nr. Qalqilya and Salfit; conducts house searches in Zabbuba village nr. Jenin, searching for Palestinian youths who threw stones at the separation wall nearby, making no arrests. Palestinians (accompanied by Israeli and international activists in some areas) hold weekly nonviolent demonstrations against the separation wall, land confiscations, and settlement expansion in Bil‘in, Ni‘lin, and Dayr Nizam/Nabi Salih. IDF soldiers fire rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas, and stun grenades at the protesters; 5 Palestinians are injured, 1 German and 1 Israeli are arrested. Jewish settlers beat 2 Palestinian teenagers nr. Jenin; the IDF intervenes, ordering the settlers to leave and detaining the teenagers for questioning, releasing them later in the evening. (OCHA, PCHR 12/23)

The 2d round of direct talks opens in Sharm al-Shaykh, Egypt, with Mubarak hosting Abbas, Netanyahu, and Clinton for the first day of meetings with talks now set to continue in Jerusalem on 9/15 and Ramallah on 9/16, and thereafter alternating between Jerusalem and Jericho. The U.S. tries but is unable to secure Israeli-Palestinian agreement on the agenda for the talks. (YA 9/14; NYT, WP, WT 9/15; JPI 9/24)

As Abbas and Netanyahu meet in Egypt, Israel’s Jerusalem city planners schedule a meeting for 10/7/2010 to debate construction of 1,362 new settlement housing units in Givat HaMatos s. of the Old City btwn. Gilo and Talpiot settlements. In addition, the Israeli construction company Na’out HaPisga, citing business losses, resumes construction of 2,400 settlement housing units in Mod’in Ilit settlement west of Ramallah that had been halted under the settlement freeze. In Gaza, IDF troops make a brief incursion into c. Gaza e. of Gaza Valley village to level land in the no-go zone to clear lines of sight, firing 4 artillery shells at armed Palestinians in the area, seriously wounding 1 and cutting electricity to nearby areas. Late in the evening, armed Palestinians on the n. Gaza border fire an antitank missile at IDF troops operating inside Israel, causing no damage or injuries; IDF troops fire back, killing 1 armed Palestinian, seriously wounding at least 1 other. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches, patrols in 5 villages nr. Qalqilya between late afternoon and late evening; also conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Hebron. In Tel Aviv, Israeli police fatally shoot an East Jerusalem Palestinian who is handcuffed and in custody on charges of car theft, claiming that the Palestinian attacked an officer, who accidentally shot him. OCHA reports that since 9/1, 1 Palestinian was fatally electrocuted in a tunnel accident on the Rafah border. (HA 9/14; PCHR 9/16; OCHA 9/17; JPI 9/24)

By this date, Palestinian factions have agreed to an Egyptian proposal to resume their national unity dialogue in Cairo on 11/9. Hamas and Fatah are considering a draft memorandum of understanding on national reconciliation proposed by Egypt that would be issued at the close of the Cairo summit (see Quarterly Update). (Electronic Intifada [online] 10/28; MNA 11/2; MNR 11/7; AFP 11/8; NYT, WT 11/9)

In the West Bank, the IDF patrols, searches houses in al-Khadir, beats 3 Palestinians (ages 28, 37, and 63), claiming that Palestinians in the area had thrown stones at Israeli vehicles on a nearby settlersonly bypass road; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus, nr. Hebron. More than 100 Jewish settlers block roads and throw stones at Palestinian cars nr. Qalqilya to prevent Palestinians, accompanied by international and Israeli peace activists, fr. reaching their groves to harvest olives. Inside Israel, Israeli police arrest 6 Israeli Jews fr. Tel Aviv for taking part in recent arson attacks against Israeli Palestinian property in Acre. (BBC 10/20; OCHA, WT 10/22; PCHR, WJW 10/23)

In the first such cross-border incident in Gaza since 9/16, the IDF sends bulldozers and armored vehicles into areas n. of Bayt Hanun to level land along the border. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in Bayt Furik nr. Nablus. Jewish settlers fr. Ramat Yishai beat a Palestinian family harvesting olives in Hebron, steal their olives. Jewish settlers fr. Elon Moreh attack Palestinains harvesting olives nr. Nablus. Under pressure to prevent further clashes like those that recently occurred in Acre, Israeli police arrest 3 Israeli Jews for assaulting Palestinians in Jerusalem and stoning Palestinian cars. Also in Israel, right-wing Jewish extremists vandalize buildings in Tel Aviv with graffiti threatening Peace Now secy. gen. Yariv Oppenheimer (cf. 9/24). (OCHA, WT 10/22; PCHR, WJW 10/23; AIC 11/9)

Four Palestinian gunmen representing Islamic Jihad, the PRCs, and the Mujahiddin Brigades (an AMB offshoot) raid the Nahal Oz fuel depot on the Gaza-Israel border under cover of mortar fire, killing 2 Israeli civilian workers; IDF soldiers on site return fire, killing 2 gunmen; 2 escape back into Gaza. The IDF retaliates with air strikes and artillery fire, killing a 3d Palestinian gunman, 4 Palestinian civilians, wounding 2 armed Palestinians, 6 civilians (including 2 children), demolishing a Palestinian home. Israel also closes Nahal Oz until it reviews security procedures (Gaza’s electricity plant has enough fuel to last until 4/13). In the West Bank, the IDF demolishes a Palestinian home in Bayt Hanina in East Jerusalem, displacing 7 Palestinians (including 5 children); patrols in Bayt Rima nr. Ramallah, firing on stone-throwing youths who confront them, wounding 1; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Hebron and Nablus, in Qalqilya and Tubas, and nr. Ramallah and Tulkarm, nr. Salfit. Jewish settlers stone a Palestinian family nr. Ramallah, injuring 2 women. Jewish settlers fr. Brakha nr. Nablus uproot Palestinian olive trees, vandalize a Palestinian home nearby. (AP, BBC, HA, IFM, Ma’ariv [Tel Aviv], REU, YA 4/9; NYT, WP, WT 4/10; WP 4/11; OCHA 3/16; PCHR 4/17)

The IDF sends bulldozers, tanks into Gaza nr. Sufa crossing to level land; troops also discover and dismantle 2 roadside bombs. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in Nablus; patrols areas around Hebron, firing on stonethrowing Palestinians who confront the troops, wounding 2 Palestinians. In Tel Aviv, some 100,000 Israeli demonstrators demand Olmert’s resignation for his handling of the 2006 Lebanon war, corruption in his administration, and failure to improve social services and public education. Turnout reportedly is half of what organizers anticipated. (HA, MM 5/3; MM, NYT, WP, WT 5/4; HA 5/5; OCHA 5/9; PCHR 5/10)

The Israeli navy fires on Palestinian fishing boats off the coast of Nussayrat r.c., forcing them to return to shore. In the West Bank, the IDF shoots, wounds a Palestinian farmer working in his field nr. Ibna; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus, nr. Hebron, and in Jenin town and r.c., Qabatya, Qalqilya. Of note: By this date, the IDF has stopped requiring special permits for Palestinians to enter the Jordan Valley, but access is only possible on public transportation through 4 checkpoints. The PA says that it has made the 1st formal contact with the kidnappers holding BBC correspondent Johnston, confirming he is still alive, but that their demands for his release are unacceptable. Protesters in cities across Israel begin to march to Tel Aviv for a major demonstration on 5/3 calling for Olmert’s resignation in the wake of the Winograd Commission report on Israel’s handling of the summer 2006 war on Lebanon. (OCHA, WP, WT 5/2; PCHR 5/3)

The Israeli navy fires on Palestinian fishing boats off the Gaza border, damaging 3. Palestinian gunmen fire on an IDF observation post on the Gaza border n. of Bayt Hanun; the IDF returns fire; no injuries are reported on either side. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in Dahaysha r.c., Hebron, Nablus, Nahalin nr. Bethlehem. Shin Bet announces that in late 3/07, it detained 19 Hamas mbrs. fr. Qalqilya whom it says have confessed under interrogation to planning a massive truck bombing in Tel Aviv during the Passover holidays, which end this evening; Olmert cites the case as proof that “terrorism is a cornerstone of the new Palestinian government, a government that should be shunned”; Hamas officials in Qalqilya deny being part of any plot. Jewish settler children fr. Ma’on in Hebron chase, attack a group of Palestinian children (ages 10–12) on their way to school; the IDF observes but does not intervene. A Palestinian gunman shoots, grazes a Jewish settler at a bus stop nr. Qalqilya. In Gaza, unidentified gunmen fatally shoot a PSF officer in Khan Yunis; unidentified assailants kidnap, shoot, wound, release a PA police officer; Jabaliya municipal workers stage a sit-in outside municipal offices to protest the nonpayment of their salaries. (NYT, OCHA, WP, WT 4/11; PCHR 4/12)

The IDF pulls troops back fr. Gaza City ending a 5-day incursion that left at least 19 Palestinians (including 7 civilians) dead, saying troops found 2 smugglers tunnels nr. Qarni crossing. In the West Bank, the IDF fatally shoots AMB field cmdr. Fadi Qaffisha, wounds 6 others (including 2 medics trying to aid Qaffisha) in Nablus in what may be an assassination; sends undercover units into Tulkarm r.c. in a car with Palestinian license plates, arresting 1 wanted Palestinian, shooting and wounding 2 bystanders; conducts arrest raids, house searches nr. Tulkarm. Also in Gaza, unidentified gunmen ambush, assassinate Popular Resistance Committee (PRC) district cmdr. Ra’id Nahal in Shatti r.c.; the PRCs blame Israel, but other Palestinian sources say the killing could be the result of intra-Palestinian rivalries. Palestinians fire 7 rockets fr. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or injuries. In Tel Aviv, 10,000s of Israelis rally for the release of 3 IDF soldiers captured by Hamas, Hizballah. (NYT, WP 9/1; OCHA 9/6; PCHR 9/7)

The IDF turns over a small, 12-sq.-mi. border area of s. Lebanon nr. Metula to UNIFIL, Lebanese army troops in a symbolic gesture of withdrawal. (WP, WT 9/1)

The IDF continues operations in Gaza City, shelling, firing on, and using drones to fire missiles at any group of Palestinians in the eastern part of the city, killing at least 4 Palestinian civilians, wounding at least 12. Also in Gaza, the IDF fatally shoots a Palestinian who approaches the n. Gaza border fence. In the West Bank, the IDF raids Balata r.c. nr. Nablus, fatally shoots 2 AMB mbrs. in what may be an assassination; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus, and nr. Bethlehem, Jenin, Qalqilya. Of note: The Israeli prison authority transfers jailed Fatah tanzim leader and elected PC mbr. Marwan Barghouti fr. Haradim penitentiary nr. Tel Aviv to Nafha prison in the Negev; Palestinians alleged he was moved to isolate him fr. other Palestinian prisoners. The Israeli human rights group B’Tselem reports a “substantial increase” in the past 2 mos. of IDF soldiers beating, mistreating, humiliating Palestinians during encounters in the West Bank. Some 300 unemployed Palestinians demonstrate, scuffle with police in Gaza City, demanding welfare payments fr. the PA (see 8/28). (NYT, WP, WT 8/30; PCHR 8/31)

The IDF raids Qabatya, surrounds the home of senior Islamic Jihad military leader Elias al-Ashkar, killing Ashkar and 4 Islamic Jihad mbrs. in an exchange of fire, sparking massive protests in Qabatya in which soldiers kill a 6th Palestinian, wound 16 (including a journalist); sends undercover units into Jenin in car with Palestinian license plates, willfully shooting and killing a PA General Intelligence Service (GIS) officer guarding the GIS headquarters in Jenin, besieging a house nearby, arresting 1 wanted Palestinian; shoots, wounds senior Islamic Jihad political leader Shaykh Mahmud al-Sadi outside Jenin in an apparent assassination attempt; conducts additional arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus, in Tulkarm, nr. Hebron; raids Aida r.c., chasing and firing on Palestinian children who allegedly threw stones at IDF soldiers, wounding an 11- and a 12-yr.-old with live ammunition; confiscates goods from, demolishes 13 shops in a farmers market in the Jordan Valley; captures a Palestinian boat smuggling explosives fr. Egypt to Gaza. A small bomb explodes at a hitchhiking post outside Shiloh settlement nr. Ramallah, lightly wounding 1 Jewish settler; no group takes responsibility. Unidentified gunmen shoot, wound a bodyguard outside the home of PA GIS Gaza chief Maj. Gen. Tariq Abu Rajab; no group claims responsibility. An American wounded in the 4/17 Tel Aviv bombing dies of his injuries, bringing that toll to 11. (AFP, REU, XIN, YA 5/14; HA, MM, NYT, WP, WT 5/15; PCHR 5/18)

The Israeli High Court upholds (6–5) a 2002 law that sharply restricts family reunification for West Bank and Gaza Palestinians married to Israeli Palestinians living in Israel to women over age 25 and men over age 35. (AP, B’Tselem press release, HA 5/14; HA, MM, NYT, WP, WT 5/15)

The IDF closes the Qarni crossing for the day; intercepts a Palestinian fishing boat off the s. Gaza coast, arresting 2 fishermen on suspicion of smuggling; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Nablus, nr. Hebron. An Israeli wounded in the 4/17 Tel Aviv suicide bombing dies of his injuries, bring that toll to 10. In n. Gaza, an explosive device detonates outside the home of a senior Fatah mbr., causing no injuries; no group claims responsibility. Hamas, Fatah/AMB leaders in n. Gaza hold another urgent mtg. to reduce tensions and prevent violence. The sides agree to end the public display of weapons, remove roadblocks installed by mbrs. of both factions on roads in various areas, form an investigative comm. to look into the causes of local tensions and to peacefully resolve them. (MM, NYT 5/15; PCHR 5/18; IMEMC 5/23)

An Islamic Jihad suicide bomber detonates a device in a Tel Aviv deli, killing 9 Israelis, wounding 59. Abbas condemns the attack, the deadliest since an 8/31/04 bombing killed 16 Israelis in Beersheba and since the 2/05 cease-fire was declared, whereas a Hamas spokesman in Gaza calls the bombing “a natural result of the continued Israeli crimes against our people”; the U.S. says that “the burden of responsibility for preventing terrorist attacks such as this one rests with the Palestinian Authority.” The IDF continues to shell the n. Gaza no-go zone (killing 1 Palestinian, wounding 2) and the s. Gaza coast from land and sea; makes an air strike on a building in Gaza City allegedly used as a factory to make rockets, causing no injuries; reopens the Sufa and Qarni crossings (closed on 4/13 and 4/15); sends troops into Nablus, where they fire on Palestinian stone throwers and on residential areas, wounding at least 16 Palestinians and damaging a clearly marked AP press vehicle; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Jenin town and r.c. (arresting the father of the 4/17 suicide bomber), in Tulkarm town and r.c., and nr. Hebron, Qalqilya. Jewish settlers fr. Elon Moreh fire on Palestinian shepherds, steal some sheep nr. Nablus. (HA, NYT, YA 4/17; MM, NYT, WP, WT 4/18; HA, MM 4/19; PCHR 4/20; OCHA 4/23)

Israeli police detain a car carrying 10 Palestinian laborers and explosives btwn. Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, stopping what the Israeli DMin. says is a major bombing attempt meant to disrupt Israel’s 3/28 elections; 1 of the laborers from Yamun, where the IDF killed a 8-yr.-old girl during an arrest raid on 3/17, reportedly has ties to Islamic Jihad. Israel allows the Qarni crossing to reopen for the importation of basic goods (see 3/20); Jordan sends 200 truckloads of food aid. The IDF patrols in Askar r.c., firing on stone-throwing Palestinians who confront the troops, wounding 1; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Qalqilya and nr. Bethlehem, Hebron. In the 2d such incident in 2 days, unidentified gunmen fire on, seriously damage the car of Qalqilya Mayor Hashim al-Masri, parked outside his home.(AFP, IMEMC, REU 3/21; MM, NYT, WP, WT 3/22; JP, Jordan Times 3/22 in WNC 3/23; OCHA, PCHR 3/23)

Israel extends the seal on the West Bank and Gaza (imposed on 3/11) until after the 3/28 Israeli elections. The IDF arrests 3 unarmed Palestinians attempting to sneak into Israel fr. n. Gaza to find work; patrols in Nablus; conducts arrest raids, house searches nr. Bethlehem, Hebron, Jenin, Nablus; seizes 766 d. of Palestinian land in Bethlehem for construction of the separation wall. (AFP, IMEMC 3/19; PCHR 3/23)

The UN warns that Gaza is dangerously short of basic foodstuffs and faces a major humanitarian crisis as a result of Israel’s continued closure of the Qarni trade crossing. The UNRWA Gaza dir. reports that the agency has run out of food to distribute to impoverished families. In a bid to avert a crisis, U.S. Amb. to Israel Richard Jones calls an emergency mtg. with Israeli, PA delegations (with the participation of reps of the EU, Egypt) in Tel Aviv to discuss declining humanitarian conditions in Gaza; says shortages of food, medicine are beginning to threaten Palestinians’ basic welfare. The sides agree to open Israel’s Kerem Shalom crossing in s. Gaza on 3/20 for the transport of humanitarian goods fr. Egypt. (AFP, AP 3/19; MM, NYT, WP, WT 3/20)

Having failed in its negotiations with Fatah and other parties to form a national unity government or agree on a national unity program, Hamas presents its cabinet slate to Abbas for approval and issues the draft national unity program as its platform. (AP, NYT, WT 3/19; AP, MM, NYT, WP, WT 3/20; HA 3/21; MM 3/22; MM, Washington Jewish Week 3/23)

The IDF reopens the Qarni crossing (closed on 1/14); conducts an air strike on 2 cars driving in Gaza City, assassinating Islamic Jihad mbrs. Adnan Bustan, Jihad al-Sawafiri; patrols in and around Jenin (firing on residential areas, wounding 2 Palestinians) and in al-Khadir; conducts arrest raids, house searches in al-Azza r.c., Balata r.c., Bethlehem, Silwad; begins work on the separation wall extension around Ariel settlement. IDF undercover units also attempt to ambush Islamic Jihad’s Nablus military cmdr. Ahmad Raddad nr. Balata r.c. in an apparent failed assassination attempt; Raddad escapes unharmed. A Palestinian fatally stabs an Israeli woman, wounds 4 on a shared taxi nr. Tel Aviv. (IMEMC 2/5; VOI 2/5 in WNC 2/6; NYT, PCHR 2/6; NYT, PCHR 2/9)

The IDF announces that it is suspending all military operations in the Palestinian areas until after the 1/25 elections, will act only in response to immediate threats; will allow PA security forces to patrol armed in Palestinian cities during elections; will ease restrictions on Palestinian movement to facilitate voting. The IDF fires on 4 Palestinian children playing nr. Ramallah, thinking they are militants laying a roadside bomb, killing a 13-yr.-old Palestinian boy, wounding 2; arrests independent Jerusalem candidate Said Yaqin while campaigning in East Jerusalem; arrests Palestinian News Network (PNN) correspondent Mustafa Sabri in his Qalqilya home; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Bethlehem, Hebron, Qabatya, Qalqilya, Ramallah, Tulkarm town and r.c. and nr. Jenin. Palestinians fire on an IDF patrol in the n. West Bank, wounding 1 soldier; fire 3 rockets fr. Gaza towards Sederot, causing no damage or injuries. (HA, IMEMC, YA 1/23; HA, IMEMC 1/24; HA 1/25; PCHR 1/26; PNN press release 1/28)

A Tel Aviv court issues a landmark ruling that Israel cannot use the 1950 Absentee Property Law to seize West Bank lands abandoned by Palestinians during the 1967 war. Coming fr. a lower court, the ruling constitutes a directive to other district courts and is not binding, as it would be had the High Court issued the ruling. (HA 1/24)

An Islamic Jihad suicide bomber fr. Nablus detonates a device in a Tel Aviv restaurant, killing only himself, wounding 24 Israelis (1 critically). The PA accuses Islamic Jihad of trying to derail the 1/25 elections. The IDF fatally shoots a Palestinian throwing a Molotov cocktail at troops in Hebron; arrests Fatah candidate fr. Jerusalem Ahmad ‘Abd al-Rahim at a campaign rally in Shu‘fat, East Jerusalem; raids, seals an office in East Jerusalem linked to Change and Reform campaigning, confiscating computers, documents; demolishes 3 Palestinian homes nr. Jenin for construction of the separation wall; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and nr. Hebron, nr. Ramallah, and in Bethlehem, Jenin, Nablus, Tubas. Palestinians fire a rocket fr. n. Gaza towards Israel, but it lands in Bayt Lahiya, damaging a Palestinian home, lightly injuring a 7-yr.-old girl. (AP, IMEMC, JTA 1/19; HA, NYT, IMEMC, WP, WT 1/20; WT 1/21; PCHR 1/26)

The IDF conducts arrests raids, house searches nr. Jenin, Tulkarm. Some 150,000 Israelis take part in an antidisengagement rally in Tel Aviv sponsored by theYESHA settlers’ council. (IMEMC 8/12; PCHR 8/18)

Palestinian gunmen representing the AMB, Islamic Jihad, the PRCs fire on a Jewish settler vehicle nr. Gaza’s Kissufim crossing, killing 2 Israeli civilians (visiting Jewish settler relatives), wounding 4; IDF soldiers at the crossing return fire, killing 2 Palestinians; 2 soldiers are wounded in the exchange. Israel says it captured an AMB mbr. who infiltrated Israel fr. Gaza with an 11 lb. bomb, with plans to carry out a suicide bombing in Tel Aviv; arrested a 2d Palestinian accomplice in Jaffa (with an Israeli ID card, married to an Israeli Arab). An IDF drone fires 2 missiles at a group of armed Palestinians nr. Bayt Lahiya, causing no injuries, in what may be an assassination attempt. The IDF also sends troops into Sa’ir nr. Hebron, fires on stone-throwing Palestinians who confront the troops, seriously injuring 1 bystander; fires on residential areas of Rafah; severely beats a Palestinian at a flying checkpoint nr. Salfit; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Balata r.c., villages around Jenin. Jewish settlers fr. Ramat Yishai attack, vandalize a Palestinian home in Hebron. Palestinian groups linked to Fatah, Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine fire rockets at Gush Katif, causing no damage or injuries. An armed Palestinian in fatigues raids the Rafah apartment of 4 American International Solidarity Movement workers, forces 1 of them (a 75-yr.-old man) into a car with 3 other masked Palestinians, holds him at a local school for 1 hr. before releasing him unharmed; no reason is given. (HA, IMEMC, PCHR, PRCS, WP, WT, XIN 7/24; NYT 7/25; OCHA, PR 7/27; PCHR 7/28)

The IDF arrests 7 unarmed Palestinians attempting to sneak into Israel fr. Gaza (5 nr. Kissufim crossing, 2 in central Gaza) to seek work; raids a photo exhibit sponsored by Hamas in Yassid nr. Nablus. A Palestinian stabs, lightly injures an IDF soldier outside Ganim settlement, steals his gun. Palestinians fire a Qassam rocket toward Sederot, causing no damage or injuries; the IDF arrests 4 suspects. Senior Islamic Jihad mbr. Shaykh Khadir says that Islamic Jihad should reconsider its truce in light of the IDF’s alleged assassination of an AMB mbr. in Balata r.c. on 4/14, the upswing in arrest raids targeting Islamic Jihad mbrs. since the 2/25 Tel Aviv bombing. Jewish settlers fr. Beit Hadassah in Hebron attack Palestinian students outside a girls’ elementary school, injuring 10 (including 3 requiring hospitalization). (IMEMC 4/23; VOI 4/23 in WNC 4/26; HA 4/24; OCHA 4/27; PCHR 4/28)

The IDF imposes a curfew on Allar nr. Tulkarm, raids and occupies a girls school and 4 Palestinian homes as observation sites, detains 10s of Palestinians for interrogation; also conducts arrest raids, house searches in ‘Azun nr. Qalqilya, Dahariyya nr. Hebron; closes checkpoints into East Jerusalem before Friday prayers, fires tear gas and percussion grenades to disperse Palestinians waiting to cross; beats a Palestinian farmer tilling his land nr. the separation wall in Dayr al-‘Asal nr. Hebron; fires on residential areas of Khan Yunis; fires rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas at a nonviolent Palestinian demonstration against the separation wall nr. Bil‘in, seriously injuring a Palestinian, lightly injuring a foreign journalist with the Associated Press. Some 40 Jewish rabbinical students club, stone 8 Palestinian laborers working legally at Nachliel settlement, seriously injuring at least 5; Israeli police intervene but the settlers escape; police sources say the 8 Palestinians were “almost lynched.” Jewish settlers fr. Brakha settlement nr. Nablus ambush, beat, seriously injure a Palestinian truck driver passing the settlement. 10s of Jewish settlers fr. Halamish settlement occupy a plot of nearby Palestinian land housing the water spigots controlling the water supply to the settlement and nearby Palestinian villages. PA security officers seal a smugglers’ tunnel in Rafah; some Palestinians confront the officers with stones, causing no injuries; 1 Palestinian is arrested. (HA, MM 3/18; VOP 3/19; AYM 3/20; OCHA 3/23; PCHR 3/24)

Ma’ariv 3/18 reports that that the financial officer of the Greek Orthodox Church, Nikolaos Papadimas, who has power of attorney for Greek Orthodox Patriarch Irineos, recently signed a secret deal, without Irineos’s permission, to sell the church’s Omar Bin Khattab Square property in the Old City of Jerusalem to Jewish investors fr. abroad and then fled the country with his family, depositing $1.5 m. in a Tel Aviv bank account. The square is a valuable commercial area inside the Jaffa Gate, where 3 prominent Palestinian hotels and a number of shops are located. Irineos denies that he gave permission for the sale, meaning that, by church bylaws, the sale is void. (JAZ, MA, al-Quds, VOP 3/19 in WNC 3/28; HA, VOP 3/23; AP 3/24; NYT 3/25; PR 3/30; al-Quds, VOP 4/3 in WNC 4/4; NYT 4/4; Independent 5/10; HA 5/15; PR 5/18)

The IDF raids Tulkarm, assassinates Islamic Jihad mbr. Muhammad Abu Khazna (Muhammad Abu Khalil) whom Israel alleges planned the 2/25 Tel Aviv bombing; bulldozes his home. Abbas condemns the raid, saying “just as calm is demanded of us, we also ask that Israel not do things like this.” The IDF also conducts arrest raids in Nablus. In Ramallah, around 25 armed, masked AMB mbrs. break into a Fatah meeting on reform, fire in air, drive the 1,000 participants out, shouting that they are being ignored by the Fatah leadership. (VOI 3/10; WP, WT 3/11; NYT 3/13; OCHA, PR 3/16; PCHR 3/17; BBC 3/28)

The IDF fires on residential areas of Rafah; conducts arrest raids, house searches in al-Simba nr. Hebron; arrests 6 Islamic Jihad mbrs. in Jenin in connection with the 2/25 Tel Aviv bombing; raids, ransacks the home of a PA police officer in Qalqilya, arrests him and 3 other Palestinians without explanation. Separately, Shin Bet announces it has captured a PA policeman wanted in connection with the lynching of 2 IDF reservists in Ramallah in 10/00. Armed Jewish settlers fr. Keddumim nr. Qalqilya bar Palestinian farmers fr. working their fields near the settlement. Jewish settlers fr. Ramat Yishai in Hebron attack Palestinian property in Tal Rumayda, causing damage but no injuries. Jewish settlers fr. Kiryat Arba threaten Palestinians in Wadi al-Nasara neighborhood, block Palestinians from moving on the road that leads to the Ibrahimi Mosque/Tomb of the Patriarchs. (VOI 3/8; VOP 3/8 in WNC 3/9; HA 3/9; PCHR 3/10; OCHA 3/16; PCHR 3/17)

Syria begins redeploying its troops in Lebanon to the Biqa‘ Valley in preparation for the withdrawal of all 14,000 soldiers and 1,000 intelligence officers. The move comes under international pressure on Syria to comply with UN Res. 1559 in the wake of the 2/14 assassination of fmr. Lebanese PM Rafiq Hariri. (JAZ, MM, NYT, WP, WT 3/8; AFP, DUS, JAZ, MENA 3/8, JAZ 3/9 in WNC 3/9; MM 3/9; JAZ, MM 3/10; MEI 3/18, 4/1)

Israeli security officials say they now believe that a renegade Islamic Jihad cell fr. Jenin, commanded fr. outside the territories, was responsible for the 2/25 bombing. IDF severely beats a Palestinian at a checkpoint nr. Hebron; demolishes 10 shops built without permits in Bardala, ‘Ayn al-Bayda; blows up a workshop in al-Yamun nr. Jenin that it claimed was a Hamas weapons factory; issues military orders for the demolition of 1 Palestinian home, 3 wells in Wadi Fukin nr. Bethlehem; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Nablus, nr. Tulkarm. Jewish settlers fr. Ma’ale Shomron nr. Qalqilya beat a Palestinian. PA Interior M Nasr Yusuf takes part in a ceremony in Jenin r.c., marking the opening of a new security headquarters there; al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade (AMB) mbrs. fire in the air to protest that the PA security services did not coordinate Yusuf’s visit with them; Yusuf, local AMB head Zakariyya Zubaydi meet at the Jenin headquarters to discuss the issue, with Yusuf saying such incidents would not be tolerated. The PA says it has arrested a total of 6 Palestinians in connection with the 2/25 Tel Aviv bombing. (MM, VOI, VOP 3/1; PR 3/2; JAZ, VOP 3/2 in WNC 3/3; PCHR 3/3; NYT 3/6)

British PM Tony Blair hosts a 1-day conference aimed at encouraging and supporting PA reform, strengthening PA governance in advance of Israel’s disengagement fr. Gaza in mid-7/05. The U.S., EU, and World Bank agree to lead an international effort to coordinate “institutional renewal” in the Palestinian territories. (AFP, AP, BBC, MM 3/1, ITAR-TASS, JAZ, MENA, VOP 3/1; Independent, MM, NYT, PR, WP, WT 3/2; DUS, ITAR-TASS, JP, MENA, al-Quds al-Arabi, VOI, VOP 3/2 in WNC 3/3; HA, MM, WJW 3/3; HJ, VOP 3/6 in WNC 3/7; MM 3/9; JPI 3/11; see also WP 2/26)

According to the U.S. State Dept.’s annual report on human rights, the Palestinian population of Israel and the occupied territories has reached 5.3 m., for the first time exceeding the Israeli Jewish population of 5.2 m. (Electronic Intifada 3/1)

The IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in ‘Azun nr. Qalqilya. The IDF also imposes a curfew on, conducts searches in the villages of ‘Azmut, Dayr al-Hatab, Salim nr. Nablus. Palestinian gunmen fire on an Israeli security vehicle patrolling the perimeter of Menorah settlement nr. Modi’in, wounding 2 settler security guards. An Israeli wounded in the 2/25 Tel Aviv bombing dies of her injuries. Several armed Palestinians break into a Jenin prison, free a relative jailed for robbery. (HA, VOI 2/28; OCHA 3/2; PCHR 3/3)

The IDF steps up military actions in response to the 2/25 Tel Aviv bombing, placing curfews on Alar, Saida villages nr. Tulkarm; conducts overnight arrest raids, house searches nr. Tulkarm; conducts late night arrest raids, house searches in al-Bireh, nr. Tulkarm. Jewish settlers fr. Gil’ad uproot 25 olive trees belonging to Palestinians fr. nearby Jinsafut. The PA arrests 2 Palestinians in connection with the 2/25 Tel Aviv bombing. (VOP 2/27; WT 2/28; OCHA 3/2; PCHR 3/3)

The Israel on Campus Coalition, an umbrella group of some 26 Jewish organizations across the U.S., launches a free hotline for students who “feel intimidated because of their pro-Israel views.” The coalition will track complaints across the country and “offer support teams of faculty, students, and Jewish professionals for complainants who want further aid.” (WJW 2/24)

A Damascus-based Islamic Jihad cell claims responsibility for the 2/25 Tel Aviv bombing, noting the end of the unofficial 1-mo. truce on 2/25 and stating that Israel had to be punished for cease-fire violations it committed; Islamic Jihad’s leadership in Gaza, however, denies responsibility, saying the group would continue to abide by an unofficial cease-fire. Israel shifts blame to Syria, which denies any responsibility, saying Islamic Jihad offices in Damascus have been closed for some time. Meanwhile, the PA security forces arrest 2 suspects in Gaza in connection with bombing; Israeli security forces arrest at least 5 suspects in Israel. The IDF tightens restrictions on Palestinian movement around Hebron; fires on 3 Palestinians attempting to sneak into Israel fr. Gaza to find work, killing 1 Palestinian, detaining 2; severely beats 2 Palestinians at a checkpoint at the entrance to al-Til nr. Nablus; places a curfew on Dayr al-Ghusun, hometown of the 2/25 suicide bomber, arrests the bomber’s 2 brothers, the village imam; fires on residential areas of Tulkarm town, r.c., and neighboring villages. An IDF border policeman shoots, wounds a Palestinian woman in Hebron after she allegedly tries to stab him during a security check. Some 15 Jewish settlers fr. Kiryat Arba, escorted by IDF soldiers, severely beat a Palestinian farmer working his land outside Hebron; soldiers arrest the Palestinian, interrogate him before releasing him. PA security forces report that they have uncovered, sealed 12 smugglers’ tunnels in Rafah since deploying along the Gaza border. A Palestinian dies of injuries received on 2/26/04. (HA, JAZ, PRCS, VOI, VOP 2/26; IDF Radio, JAZ, NYT, PRCS, WP 2/27; MM 2/28; MM, PCHR 3/3; MEI 3/4)