186 / 15258 Results
  • February 22, 2024

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers open fire at Palestinians during a raid in Shaab al-Butum in the Masafer Yatta area; no injuries are reported. Israeli settlers also open fire at 2 commercial...

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  • October 18, 2023

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers with a military escort shot and killed a Palestinian man during a raid in Dura al-Qara’. Israeli settlers also shot and injured a Palestinian in Shufa. Elsewhere...

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  • September 11, 2023

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces injured 2 Palestinians with stun grenade shrapnel during a raid in ‘Aqabat Jaber refugee camp. Israeli forces also shot and injured 3 Palestinians, including 1...

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  • September 4, 2023

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers assaulted 1 Palestinian man and stole his donkey in Halaweh in the Masafer Yatta area. Israeli forces shot and injured 5 Palestinians during a raid in Jenin...

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  • August 31, 2023

    In the West Bank, 1 Palestinian man was shot and killed after he rammed 7 people, killing 1 and injuring 6, including 1 Palestinian minor, 2 soldiers, and 2 settlers at a checkpoint near Ni’lin....

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  • August 28, 2023

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces seized a concrete mixer near Qarawat Bani Hassan. 17 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Ya’bad, Nablus, Bethlehem, Aida refugee camp, Dura, and...

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  • August 27, 2023

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  • September 21, 2022

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces shot and injured 2 Palestinian minors during a raid in Rumana; others suffered tear-gas related injuries. Israeli forces also violently dispersed Palestinians...

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  • June 6, 2022

    In the West Bank, PA forces arrested 9 Palestinian protesters during a general strike in Hebron over rising food prices. Food prices have been rising throughout the world due to Russia’s blockade...

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  • January 17, 2022

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers blocked the main entrance to al-Naqura. Israeli forces shot and killed 1 Palestinian man, alleging that he had tried to stab a soldier at the Gush Etzion...

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  • July 22, 2021

    In the West Bank, 3 Israeli settlers set fire to a Palestinian marble factory in Jamma’in near Huwwara, causing damage of around $920,000. 6 Palestinians were arrested during raids in Zabbuba and...

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  • December 16, 2020

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers with military escort toured Sabastiyya, closing areas of the town off to Palestinians. Israeli settlers also set up a mobile home on Palestinian-owned land near...

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  • May 13, 2015

    IDF troops on the Gaza border e. of Jabaliya open fire on agricultural areas nr. the border fence, causing no damage or injuries. Off the coast nr. Rafah, Israeli naval forces open fire on...

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  • October 23, 2011

    IDF troops on the n. Gaza border fire warning shots at Palestinians scavenging for construction materials in the former Erez industrial zone, forcing them to flee. In the West Bank, the IDF...

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  • September 23, 2011

    Abbas addresses the UNGA and officially submits the papers requesting full UN member-state status. UN secy.-gen. Ban Ki-Moon immediately sends the application to the UNSC. Rotating UNSC head,...

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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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  • March 19, 2011

    Palestinians fire 2 rockets (including 1 Grad) and 54 mortars fr. Gaza into Israel within 15 mins., lightly injuring 2 Israelis, damaging an empty kindergarten, and marking the largest barrage...

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  • March 17, 2011

    Israeli warplanes overfly s. Gaza, dropping leaflets warning Palestinians not to enter the 300-m no-go zone along the border fence. Israel seals the West Bank until 3/21 for the Purim holiday....

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  • March 12, 2011

    In the West Bank, the IDF raids and searches Palestinian villages around Itamar settlement, particularly in Awarta village, in search for the killers of 5 settlers found murdered on 3/11,...

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  • March 1, 2011

    IDF troops on the c. Gaza border fire on armed Palestinians operating e. of Dayr al-Balah, wounding 1. The IDF makes a day-long incursion into Khuza‘a village in s. Gaza to level lands and clear...

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  • February 23, 2011

    Fayyad reiterates his 2/20 national unity offer, saying the PA would forgo further U.S. aid for the sake of national unity if the U.S. went through with threats to suspend aid to the PA if Hamas...

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  • February 19, 2011

    Israeli naval vessels intercept a Palestinian fishing boat off the n. Gaza coast, escort it to Ashdod, confiscate the boat, and release the fishermen. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 4...

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  • February 17, 2011

    Overnight, IDF troops on the n. Gaza border fire on and shell a group of Palestinians nr. the n. Gaza border fence, killing 3 Palestinians; Palestinians say the 3 were unarmed men attempting to...

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  • February 16, 2011

    As the quarter opens, Israel maintains a tight siege of Gaza aimed at unseating the governing Hamas authority, in control since 6/2007. The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) enforces a 300-m deep no-go...

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  • January 13, 2011

    After receiving a warning fr. Egypt that Israel is serious about preventing further rocket and mortar fire fr. Gaza, Hamas authorities hold a 2d mtg. (see 1/11) with smaller factions to urge them...

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  • October 8, 2010

    Meeting in Libya, Arab League FMs strongly endorse the 10/2 Palestinian decision to halt direct talks with Israel until Israel halts settlement construction, pledging to meet again in 1 mo. to...

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  • July 13, 2010

    Israel reports that a Libyan ship that had threatened to run the Gaza blockade (see 7/11) has diverted toward the Egyptian port of al-Arish, defusing a potential crisis; the Egyptian Red Crescent...

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  • March 28, 2010

    The Arab League ends 2 days of talks in Libya to debate whether to re-endorse proximity talks without reaching an agreement, though members renew support for the 2002 Arab League initiative...

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  • July 13, 1999

    In Rome, King Abdallah of Jordan holds talks with Italian officials, who agree to forgive or reschedule $130 m. of Jordan's debt. The king then heads to Aqaba, where he receives Israeli PM Barak...

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  • June 11, 1999

    At the UN, U.S., Libyan officials hold 1st mtg. in 18 yrs. U.S. says it will not support full lifting of sanctions until Libya halts support of international terrorism, acknowledges responsibility...

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In the West Bank, Israeli settlers open fire at Palestinians during a raid in Shaab al-Butum in the Masafer Yatta area; no injuries are reported. Israeli settlers also open fire at 2 commercial structures and an electric transformer in al-Naqura, causing a power outage in the village. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers raid Tuqu’, threatening Palestinian shepherds. Israeli settlers also set up 3 mobile homes in Wadi Rahal. Israeli forces shoot and kill 2 Palestinians after they allegedly shot and killed 1 Israeli settler and injured 10 others on a highway near the Ma’ale Adumim settlement. Israeli forces also bomb Jenin using a drone, killing 2 Palestinians, including a child, and injuring 15 others. Elsewhere, Israeli forces shoot and injure 2 Palestinians during a raid in Balata refugee camp. Israeli forces also shoot and injure a Palestinian during a raid in ad-Doha. Meanwhile, Israeli forces detain 2 10-year-old Palestinian boys for 6 hours in Sinjil. In East Jerusalem, Israeli settlers tour the Haram al-Sharif compound. Israeli forces assault and arrest 2 Palestinians outside of the compound’s Lions Gate. In Gaza, Israeli forces bomb Jabalia refugee camp, Dayr al-Balah, Rafah, Gaza City, Khan Yunis, Nuseirat refugee camp, al-Bureij refugee camp, and Maghazi, killing at least 97 people, including 18 people from the same family in a home in Gaza City. 5 patients die at the Nasser Hospital due to the lack of power and oxygen as Israeli forces continue to occupy the hospital. In Lebanon, Israeli forces bomb Kafr Remen, Tayr Harfa, Jbaa, Kafr Kila, Maroun al-Ras, Khiam, Umm al-Tut, and Shehin, killing 4 people in Kafr Remen. Hezbollah attacks an Israeli military building in Kfar Yuval. In the Red Sea, a ship is hit by 2 missiles fired from Yemen. Israel’s Arrow missile defense system shoots down a ballistic missile the Houthi movement says is fired by its forces. (AJ, AJ, AP, HA, HA, NYT, NYT, REU, REU, UNOCHA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 2/22; AJ, HA, NYT, REU, UNOCHA 2/23)

More than 29,410 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces in Gaza, including at least 12,000 children and 7,200 women, and around 69,465 have been injured since 10/7/2023. At least 8,000 people are missing in rubble, including 1,700 children. 399 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces and settlers in the West Bank and East Jerusalem since 10/7/2023, including 102 children. More than 4,530 people have been injured. Israel reports that 1,139 Israelis and foreign nationals have been killed and 5,400 have been injured in Israel since 10/7/2023, including Israeli soldiers. In addition, 235 Israeli soldiers have been killed and 1,396 injured in Gaza since the ground invasion began on 10/27/2023. Over 1.93 million Palestinians, nearly 85% of the population of Gaza, have been displaced since 10/7/2023. There has been a complete electricity blackout in Gaza since 10/12/2023 due to the Israeli blockade. At least 70,000 housing units have been destroyed and 290,000 have been damaged in Israeli airstrikes since 10/7/2023, constituting over 60% of all housing units. 42 trucks carrying aid enter Gaza. (UNOCHA, UNOCHA, WAFA 2/22; UNOCHA 2/23)

Israeli finance minister Bezalel Smotrich issues a statement after meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, and Strategic Affairs Minister Ron Dermer, saying the government will submit plans for 2,350 new settlement units in Ma’ale Adumim, 300 in the Keidar settlement, and 694 in the Efrat settlement in response the killing of an Israeli settler earlier in the day. National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir says Israeli settlers’ right to freedom of movement in the West Bank overrides that of Palestinians’, adding he will further limit the freedom of movement for Palestinians. (AJ, AJ, HA, HA 2/22; HA 2/23)

Israel confirms its forces are building a new road through central Gaza “to move logistics and soldiers.” (AJ 2/22)

Prime Minister Netanyahu presents his post-war plan for Gaza to the Israeli war cabinet, which includes installing “local officials” to govern the area, “maintain an indefinite freedom to operate throughout” Gaza, enlarge the “buffer zone” inside Gaza, and the complete demilitarization of Gaza before reconstruction is allowed to begin. Netanyahu’s plan also includes the permanent closure of UNRWA and the rejection of “unilateral recognition” of a Palestinian state. The Times of Israel reports that Israel has agreed to allow U.S. flour to enter Gaza. (AJ, AX, HA, NYT, REU, WAFA 2/23)

Defense Minister Gallant meets with U.S. National Security Council coordinator for the Middle East and North Africa Brett McGurk, saying Israel will expand the authority of Israeli negotiators to reach a prisoner exchange deal in Paris over the weekend. U.S. National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby calls the meetings McGurk had with Gallant and Egyptian officials “constructive.” (AX 2/21; AJ, AP, AX, AX, HA, HA, REU, REU 2/22; AJ, NYT 2/23)

Jordanian representatives, including Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi, give statements to the ICJ on the fourth day of the hearings on the legality of the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories, saying Israeli policies and practices show that Israel intends for the occupation to be permanent. Japan’s representative argues that even territory that is not internationally recognized cannot be acquired by force. Ireland’s representative says Israel has committed serious breaches of international law during its occupation. China says the issue of Palestinian self-determination is a UN issue, countering a U.S. argument made on 2/21, and argues that because of the occupation the right to self-defense lies more with the Palestinians than with the Israelis. Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Luxembourg, Malaysia, and Mauritius also present arguments. (AJ, AJ, HA, REU, WAFA, WAFA 2/22)

UNRWA commissioner-general Philippe Lazzarini writes a letter to UN General Assembly president Dennis Francis, saying Israel is making a “concerted effort” to dismantle UNRWA, including by ordering UNRWA to leave a vocational center in East Jerusalem and pay Israel $4.5 million for using the facility, pointing out that the facility was given to UNRWA by Jordan in 1952. Lazzarini also says Israel is only giving UNRWA staffers visas for 1-2 months, that Finance Minister Smotrich has threatened UNRWA with revoking its tax exemption, that an Israeli bank has blocked the UNRWA account, and that Israeli customs has suspended shipments of goods to UNRWA. (AJ 2/22; AJ 2/23)

The UN Security Council convenes to discuss the situation in Gaza. UN special coordinator for the Middle East peace process Tor Wennesland and representatives from Doctors Without Borders brief council members on the situation. (WAFA, WAFA 2/22)

U.S. president Joe Biden says in a tweet that the “overwhelming majority of Palestinians are not Hamas . . . In fact, they’re also suffering as a result of Hamas’ terrorism.” (HA 2/22; HA 2/23)

After a 2-day G20 meeting in Brazil, EU high commissioner for foreign affairs Josep Borrell and Brazilian foreign minister Mauro Vieira say that there is unanimous agreement among the G20 members in support of a 2-state solution. (REU 2/22)

The Houthi movement announces that Israeli, UK, and U.S.-owned ships are banned from the Red Sea. (AJ, AJ 2/22)

Haaretz reports that Israeli forces shot and killed an Israeli citizen and injured his girlfriend on 10/7/2023, mistaking them for Palestinians. (AJ, HA 2/22)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers with a military escort shot and killed a Palestinian man during a raid in Dura al-Qara’. Israeli settlers also shot and injured a Palestinian in Shufa. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers threw stones at Palestinians traveling near Burqa, injuring a Palestinian woman. Israeli settlers also opened fire at a Palestinian vehicle near Bizarya, causing damage. Meanwhile, Israeli settlers vandalized olive trees near Tell. Israeli forces shot and killed 3 Palestinians, including 2 minors, during raids in Shuqba and Jamma’in. Israeli forces also violently dispersed Palestinian protesters in Huwwara, Tarqumiyah, and Dar Salah, injuring 3 with live ammunition and others with tear gas. Elsewhere, Israeli forces demolished a Palestinian home in Bayt Hanina. 65 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in and around Hebron, Bethlehem, and Nablus. Around 750 Palestinians have been arrested by Israeli forces since 10/7. In East Jerusalem, Israeli settlers toured the Haram al-Sharif compound. In Gaza, Israeli airstrikes killed around 100 Palestinians, including several people sheltering at an UNRWA school in Khan Yunis. Rockets were fired at Israel, causing damage. In Haifa, Israeli police violently dispersed anti-war protesters, arresting 4 and injuring others with batons. In Lebanon, Hezbollah fired an anti-tank missile at Israeli soldiers in Shtula, injuring 5. Israel fired artillery shells and conducted drone strikes in Lebanon. Hezbollah said 2 of its members were killed. Protesters demonstrated outside of the German and U.S. embassies in Beirut. In Syria, Israel conducted airstrikes in the Quneitra province. In Turkey, 60 people, mostly police officers, were injured after protesters in Istanbul attempted to storm the Israeli consulate. There were also demonstrations in Jordan, Yemen, Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco, Libya, Iran, and the West Bank. (AJ, AJ, AP, AP, AP, HA, HA, NYT, NYT, REU, UNOCHA WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 10/18; AJ, AJ, AJ, AP, HA, NYT, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 10/19)

The Gaza Ministry of Health said as of 5 p.m. at least 3,500 Palestinians had been killed, including at least 853 children, and 12,500 had been injured in Israeli airstrikes on Gaza since 10/7, including 47 entire families consisting of 500 people. In addition, Israeli media reported that 1,500 Palestinian militants have been killed near Gaza. 65 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces and settlers in the West Bank and East Jerusalem since 10/7, including 15 children. More than 1,284 have been injured, including at least 300 with live ammunition. Israeli officials recorded no new fatalities, leaving the Israeli death toll at around 1,300 Israelis and foreign nationals; 4,562 have been injured since 10/7. The UN reported that over 1 million Palestinians have been displaced since 10/7 and that since 11 p.m. on 10/12 there has been a complete electricity blackout due to the Israeli blockade. At least 11,887 housing units have been destroyed in Israeli airstrikes since 10/7. The number is likely much higher as the latest data is from 10/14. The Palestinian civil defense team said that more than 1,000 Palestinians were under the rubble of buildings in Gaza. (AJ, AJ, HA, UNOCHA 10/18)

Palestinians in the West Bank observed a general strike in protest against the Israeli airstrike that killed 471 people at al-Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza City on 10/17. (WAFA, WAFA 10/18)

The Israeli military again called on Palestinians in northern Gaza to evacuate south to the al-Mawasi area. (AJ 10/17; HA, UNOCHA 10/18)

The PA leadership held an emergency meeting chaired by President Mahmoud Abbas, confirming a July 2023 decision to end security coordination with Israel and reaffirming the Palestinian people’s right to self-defense. (WAFA 10/18)

The Knesset approved temporary legislation to allow Israeli prisons to admit new inmates beyond their legal capacity, allowing worsening conditions for Palestinian prisoners, including reducing living spaces and forcing prisoners to sleep on mattresses on the floor. The bill will be in effect for 3 months. Israel prisons have received 500 new Palestinian prisoners since 10/7, including 118 who crossed from Gaza to Israel in relation to Operation Al-Aqsa Flood. The Israeli High Court of Justice ruled in 2017 that prisoners must be given at least 37.7 square feet of space. The Knesset ethics panel also voted to suspend Jewish Hadash MK Ofer Cassif from the Knesset for 45 days and revoked his salary for 14 days over his anti-war stance. (AJ, HA 10/18; HA 10/19)

U.S. president Joe Biden landed in Israel for meetings with Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, President Isaac Herzog, and the war cabinet. Biden was supposed to travel to Amman for meetings with President Abbas, Jordanian king Abdullah II, and Egyptian president Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi, but the meetings were cancelled by the 3 leaders after Israel bombed al-Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza, killing 471 people. Biden told Netanyahu during a meeting that “it appears as though it was done by the other team, not you” in reference to the hospital bombing. Biden cautioned Israel not to be consumed by rage, saying the U.S. made mistakes after 9/11. Biden also announced $100 million in humanitarian aid to Palestinians as the Senate was working on passing a bill providing $10 billion in extra military aid to Israel. Biden said aid to Gaza could start arriving on 10/20, as Egypt needs to “patch the road” to the crossing. Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT) blocked an attempt by Senator Rick Scott (R-FL) to prevent the Biden administration from dispersing the $100 million in aid to Palestinians. 33 Democratic senators urged Secretary of State Antony Blinken to lead efforts to provide humanitarian aid to Gaza. Around 300 Jewish Americans were arrested at the U.S. Capitol while protesting Israel’s war in Gaza. The protest was arranged by Jewish Voice for Peace. (HA 10/17; AJ, AJ, AJ, AJ, AP, HA, HA, HA, HA, HA, HA, HA, NYT, NYT, NYT, REU, REU, REU, REU, REU, REU 10/18; AJ, AP, HA, HA, REU, WAFA 10/19; AJ 10/20)

After President Biden’s meeting with Prime Minister Netanyahu, Netanyahu’s office released a statement saying that Israel will not allow aid from its territory to enter Gaza until the captives are returned. The statement also said Israel demands that the Red Cross be able to visit the captives and that Israel will not “thwart” humanitarian aid from Egypt as long as it only consists of food, water, and medicine. (AJ 10/17; AJ, HA 10/18)

President el-Sisi said during a press conference with German chancellor Olaf Schulz that Israel could allow Palestinians in Gaza to stay in the Naqab desert until Israel can “do what they wish to do with the militant operatives in the Gaza Strip.” El-Sisi also spoke with President Biden about aid coming through the Rafah crossing. Saudi foreign minister Faisal bin Farhan met with his Iranian counterpart Hossein Amir-Abdollahian in the sidelines of an OIC meeting in Jeddah, discussing the situation in Gaza. Amir-Abdollahian called on the OIC members to sanction Israel and expel Israeli ambassadors. The OIC called for an immediate ceasefire and for Israel to lift the siege of Gaza. (AP 10/16; AJ 10/17; AJ, HA, REU, REU, WAFA, WAFA 10/18; WAFA 10/19)

The U.S. blocked a UN Security Council resolution calling for humanitarian access to Gaza, protection of civilians, and condemning Hamas’ operation in Israel. The resolution, introduced by Brazil, was approved by 12 members of the Security Council, while Russia and the UK abstained. UN secretary-general Antonio Guterres called “for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in the Middle East.” (AJ 10/17; AJ, AJ, AJ, AP, HA, NYT, REU 10/18)

U.S. State Department director of the office of public and congressional affairs Josh Paul resigned in protest over the Biden administration’s policy toward the Israeli assault on Gaza and its “impulsive reaction built on confirmation bias, political convenience, intellectual bankruptcy, and bureaucratic inertia.” (AJ, HA 10/18; AJ, NYT 10/19)

Jewish Currents reported that the Palestinian academics and analysts Noura Erakat, Yousef Munayyer, and Omar Baddar had their interviews cut from segments on CBS and CNN. MSNBC last week temporarily removed 3 Muslim hosts, Mehdi Hasan, Ali Velshi, and Ayman Mohyeldin, who is Palestinian, from their programming. (JC 10/18)

In the West Bank, Israeli forces injured 2 Palestinians with stun grenade shrapnel during a raid in ‘Aqabat Jaber refugee camp. Israeli forces also shot and injured 3 Palestinians, including 1 minor, during a raid in al-Arroub refugee camp. 17 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Hebron, Dura, Sa’ir, Beit Umar, Beit Kahel, Surif, ‘Azzun, Jenin, and Aqabat Jaber refugee camp. In East Jerusalem, 3 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Jabel Mukaber and Biddu. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces shot and injured 1 Palestinian fisherman with a baton round and arrested 2 others northwest of Rafah. (WAFA, WAFA 9/11; PCHR 9/14; UNOCHA 9/26)

10 Palestinians were killed and dozens injured during fighting in Ain al-Hilweh refugee camp in Lebanon over the weekend. Fighting reignited on 9/7 after a month of relative quiet. A ceasefire was declared later in the day after Lebanese general Elias al-Baysari met with members of Palestinian factions at his office in Beirut. (AJ, ALM, AP, REU 9/11)

The Jerusalem District Planning Authority approved the construction of 2 new Israeli settlements, Kidmat Tzion and the Hebron Strip, which is an extension of Givat Hamatos, in East Jerusalem. Kidmat Tzion lies within Ras al-Amud and will have 385 housing units. The plan was pushed by the Ateret Cohanim settlement organization which presented the plans in April. The Hebron Strip, of which 2/3 is in East Jerusalem, will have 3,500 housing units, a hotel, and a commercial area. (PCN 9/8; HA 9/11)

Al-Quds newspaper reported the U.S. has supplied the PA with armored vehicles, bullets, tear gas, sound bombs, riot shields, and k-9s with the approval of Israel. Palestinian and Israeli sources later told Haaretz that the U.S. had only transferred armored vehicles to the PA. The U.S. State Department denied that the U.S. had supplied weapons or ammunition. Israeli national security minister Itamar Ben-Gvir warned Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of consequences if Israel had allowed weapons to be transferred to the PA. Netanyahu later confirmed that Israel had facilitated the transfer of armored vehciles to the PA, but not weapons. The PA said it had not received equipment from Israel. Hamas said the reported transfer will only bolster the interests of the occupation.  (QDS 9/11; QDS 9/12; HA, HA, HA, QDS, WAFA 9/13; MDW 9/14; ALM 9/15)

The Israeli broadcaster Kan reported that the Israeli military had admitted to mistakenly shooting 3 Palestinians during a raid in Jenin on 8/28, injuring the 3, including 1 who is now a paraplegic. None of the Palestinian victims were interrogated after being dropped off at different hospitals. (TOI 9/11; MEMO 9/12)

Haaretz reported that Israeli police had banned vendors in the Old City of Jerusalem from selling t-shirts featuring the Palestinian flag, the Palestinian key, and other Palestinian symbols and slogans. (HA 9/11; MEMO 9/12)

4 Palestinian border police officers were sentenced to between 4 years in prison and community service for attacking and robbing Palestinians entering Israel via a hole in the separation wall south of Hebron. (HA 9/11; MEMO 9/12)

Israel’s Interior Ministry said that Palestinian Americans living in Gaza who are not considered a security threat by Israel will be able to enter Israel on a B2 tourist visa and use Israeli airports. First-degree Palestinian American relatives of people living in Gaza will also be allowed to visit Gaza for up to 90 days once a year. The policy change was part of Israel’s efforts to be admitted to the U.S. Visa Waiver program. (MEE, MEMO, REU 9/11)

U.S. assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern affairs Barbara Leaf met with Israeli officials, reportedly discussing Palestinian demands related to the Israel-Saudi normalization deal. Israeli national security advisor Tzachi Hanegbi said at a conference at Reichman University that he is in talks with the PA about their demands but had threatened that if the PA approach the ICJ Israel will sever security and political ties. (HA, HA, QDS 9/11)

More than 20,000 people were feared dead after a storm broke 2 dams near the eastern Libyan city of Derma. At least 23 Palestinians died in the flood. The PA’s Emergency Intervention and Response Team arrived in Libya on 9/13 to assist with finding survivors. The storm also caused flooding in Gaza, damaging infrastructure and homes. (WAFA, WAFA 9/11; AJ, HA, NYT, WAFA 9/12; AJ, AJ, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 9/13; AJ, QDS 9/14; AP 9/15)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers assaulted 1 Palestinian man and stole his donkey in Halaweh in the Masafer Yatta area. Israeli forces shot and injured 5 Palestinians during a raid in Jenin refugee camp, including 1 who was rushed to a hospital in Haifa for treatment; 3 were arrested. Israeli forces also demolished 1 Palestinian home in Tura. 11 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Kobar, Kafr Malik, Tammun, ‘Askar refugee camp, Kafr Qaddum, al-Eizariya, and Deir Sammit; 1 Palestinian was injured by live ammunition during the raid in Tammun. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces assaulted and arrested 1 Palestinian woman in the Old City, claiming she had tried to stab an Israeli police officer. Israeli forces also seized Palestinian school books from students entering the Haram al-Sharif compound. (HA, JP, TOI, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 9/4; MEE 9/5; PCHR 9/7; HA 9/10; UNOCHA 9/11)

Israel closed the Karim Abu Salem (Kerem Shalom) crossing to Gaza, claiming explosives were found in a shipment of clothes. (QDS, REU 9/4; AJ 9/5; PCHR 9/7)

Al Watan Voice reported that Israel transferred a group of Palestinian prisoners, including Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti, from the Nafha prison to the Ofer prison. (MEMO 9/5)

The Israeli Attorney General’s office informed the family of Eyad Hallaq that it would not appeal the decision of the Jerusalem District Court to acquit the police officer who shot and killed Hallaq in Jerusalem on 5/30/2020. On 9/5, Hallaq’s family petitioned the Supreme Court through Adalah to overturn the decision. (WAFA 9/4; MDW, WAFA 9/6)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas spoke by phone with U.S. secretary of state Antony Blinken. A delegation of Palestinian officials is scheduled to meet Saudi and U.S. officials in Riyadh on 9/5 to discuss Saudi-Israeli normalization. (QDS, QDS, WAFA 9/4)

Israeli foreign minister Eli Cohen attended the opening ceremony for the Israeli embassy to Bahrain in Manama. Cohen also met with Bahrain’s crown prince and prime minister Salman Bin Hamad Al Khalifa. (AP 9/3; AJ, HA, JP 9/4)

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with Cypriot president Nikos Christodoulides and Greek prime minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis in Nicosia, discussing trilateral agreements, including the potential export of Israeli gas to Europe. (ALM, BB 9/4)

The Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar reported that Libyan prime minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibeh met with Mossad chief David Barnea in 2022 to discuss potential normalization. The talks reportedly included Jordanian, UAE, and U.S. officials. The reporting follows unrest in Libya after Foreign Minister Cohen disclosed a meeting with Libyan foreign minister Najla Mangoush on 8/27, leading to the dismissal of Mangoush by Dbeibeh. (TOI 9/4)

New Barcelona mayor Jaume Collboni reversed his predecessor Ada Colau’s decision to end the city’s twinning agreement with Tel Aviv. Colau canceled the city twinning agreement in February, citing Israel’s apartheid policies. (MEE 9/4)

Israeli foreign minister Eli Cohen attended the opening ceremony for the Israeli embassy to Bahrain in Manama. Cohen also met with Bahrain’s crown prince and prime minister Salman Bin Hamad Al Khalifa. (AP 9/3; AJ, HA, JP 9/4)

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with Cypriot president Nikos Christodoulides and Greek prime minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis in Nicosia, discussing trilateral agreements, including potential export of Israeli gas to Europe. (ALM, BB 9/4)

The Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar reported that Libyan prime minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibeh met with Mossad chief David Barnea in 2022 to discuss potential normalization. The talks reportedly included Jordanian, UAE, and U.S. officials. The reporting follows unrest in Libya after Foreign Minister Cohen disclosed a meeting with Libyan foreign minister Najla Mangoush on 8/27, leading to the dismissal of Mangoush by Dbeibeh. (TOI 9/4)

The new mayor of Barcelona Jaume Collboni reversed his predecessor Ada Colau’s decision to end the city’s twinning agreement with Tel Aviv. Colau canceled the city twinning agreement in February, citing Israeli apartheid policies. (MEE 9/4)

In the West Bank, 1 Palestinian man was shot and killed after he rammed 7 people, killing 1 and injuring 6, including 1 Palestinian minor, 2 soldiers, and 2 settlers at a checkpoint near Ni’lin. The man’s family said he had been humiliated by Israeli forces at a checkpoint 2 weeks ago. Israeli forces later raided the man’s home in Deir ‘Ammar refugee camp, injuring 1 with live ammunition and 1 with a baton round; others suffered tear-gas related injuries. Israeli settlers threw stones at a Palestinian family driving near the al-Mahkamah checkpoint, injuring 1 child and causing damage to the vehicle. Israeli settlers also stopped 1 Palestinian woman driving near Ramallah, smashing her window and stealing her bag. Israeli forces seized 1 bulldozer in Bidya. 16 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Salfit, Jenin, Ramallah, and Hebron. In East Jerusalem, Israeli settlers assaulted 1 Palestinian taxi driver with tools and sticks near the Mamilla Cemetery. Israeli settlers toured the Haram al-Sharif compound. Israeli forces issued demolition notices for 9 Palestinian-owned homes in al-Bustan. In Haifa, around 3,000 Palestinian citizens of Israel marched with 164 coffins to protest the Israeli police’s failure to combat gun violence in their communities; the protest was attended by MK Ayman Odeh. (AJ, ALM, AP, HA, HA, MEE, REU, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 8/31; PCHR 9/7; UNOCHA 9/11)

Adalah petitioned the Israeli High Court of Justice to intervene against legislation from July which prevents 1,500 prisoners, mainly Palestinians, from being released from Israeli prisons on 9/1. Adalah said the law, pushed by National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir, “is another step up in the racist, sweeping and arbitrary measures against Palestinian prisoners.” (HA 8/31; WAFA 9/2)

In a televised ministerial meeting, Libyan prime minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibeh said that his government rejects “any form of normalization” with Israel, saying “[l]ong live Libya, long live Palestine, and long live the Palestinian cause in all of our hearts.” The remarks followed the suspension of the Libyan foreign minister on 8/27 after it was made public that she held a meeting with Israeli foreign minister Eli Cohen in Rome last week. (AP, HA 8/31)

Former directors of the Shin Bet Yuval Diskin (2005-2011) and Ami Ayalon (1995-2000) urged U.S. president Joe Biden not to meet with Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, citing the Israeli government’s effort to overhaul the judicial branch of government. (HA 8/31)

56 Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives and 7 Democrats in the Senate led by Representative Andre Carson (D-IN) and Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VA) urged Senator Jim Risch (R-ID) and House Representative Michael McCaul (D-TX) to end their block on the dispersal of $75 million for UNRWA food program assistance in the West Bank and Gaza. (HA 8/31)

Israel summoned the Belgian ambassador for a reprimand after the Belgian minister for international development Caroline Ganz said “entire villages are being wiped off the map by the Israelis,” referring to the Palestinian villages where residents have fled during the summer due to Israeli settler attacks and Israeli military demolitions. (HA 8/31; WAFA 9/1)

The Forward reported that in his forthcoming book The Last Politician: Inside Joe Biden’s White House and the Struggle for America’s Future, Franklin Foer wrote that President Joe Biden had directed his national security advisors to “[s]mother [Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu with love” during Israel’s May 2021 assault on Gaza. According to Foer, Biden refrained from criticizing Israel’s assault to build trust with Netanyahu. (HA 8/31)

In the West Bank, Israeli forces seized a concrete mixer near Qarawat Bani Hassan. 17 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Ya’bad, Nablus, Bethlehem, Aida refugee camp, Dura, and Bayt Rima; 4 Palestinians were injured by Israeli forces using live ammunition during the raid in Ya’bad. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces arrested 5 Palestinian fishermen and seized their 2 boats. (PCHR, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 8/28; PCHR 8/31; UNOCHA 9/11)

Human Rights Watch released a report saying that Israel has killed at least 34 Palestinian children in 2023. The report criticized Israel for the killings and the international community for not holding Israel accountable, including by adding Israel to the UN list of countries that have committed grave violations against children during armed conflict. (HRW, WAFA 8/28)

Libyan prime minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibeh visited the Palestinian embassy, promising that Libya would not normalize relations with Israel after he suspended foreign minister Najla Mangoush in the aftermath of Israeli foreign minister Eli Cohen saying that the 2 had held a meeting in Rome. (HA 8/28)

Israeli finance minister Bezalel Smtorich said Israel would not agree to any gestures toward Palestinians as part of a normalization deal with Saudi Arabia. Smotrich also attacked the U.S. for its criticism of National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir’s pro-apartheid comments on 8/23, calling the U.S. hypocritical for preaching human rights to Israel considering “how they operated in Afghanistan and Iraq.” (HA, MEE 8/28)

Israel’s Channel 13 reported that a delegation of Palestinian officials will travel to Saudi Arabia to discuss concessions Israel will have to make to Palestinians in order to convince Saudi Arabia to normalize relations with Israel. (TOI 8/28)

Syria said that Israeli airstrikes had put Aleppo Airport out of service. (AJ, AP, HA, MEE, REU 8/28; REU 8/29)

The spokesperson for Papua New Guinean prime minister James Marape told Reuters that Marape will visit Israel next week and open an embassy to Israel in Jerusalem. (TOI 8/27; AJ, REU 8/28)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers with a military escort raided Madama, assaulting 2 Palestinians and vandalizing 1 home and 40 olive trees. Israeli forces fired tear gas at Palestinians trying to fend off the settlers. Israeli settlers also uprooted 40 olive trees and vandalized agricultural structures in Tuqu’. Israeli forces seized 1 tractor in ‘Azzun. Israeli forces also smashed windows in a mosque during a raid in Hebron. Elsewhere, Israeli forces shot and injured 5 Palestinians during a raid in Tulkarm refugee camp. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen west of al-Sudaniya; no injuries were reported. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 8/27; PCHR 8/31; UNOCHA 9/11)

The Israeli government allocated additional Palestinian land to the Mevo’ot Jericho and Amichai settlements through the Settlement Division. Peace Now said the decision to allocate land to the 2 settlements through the non-governmental Settlement Division was a means for the government to expand settlements away from public scrutiny. (PCN 8/30)

Israeli finance minister Bezalel Smotrich agreed to unfreeze $53 million promised to Palestinian communities by the previous Israeli government. (AJ, HA, HA, REU 8/28)

Libyan prime minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibeh suspended Foreign Minister Najla Mangoush after Israeli foreign minister Eli Cohen said he had met with her last week in Rome, discussing possible cooperation. The Libyan foreign ministry maintained that it had rejected an invitation for a meeting with Israel, that Cohen and Mangoush’s meeting was “unplanned and incidental,” and that Libya “outright rejects” normalization. Mangoush later fled Libya on a private plane as demonstrators blocked roads and burned tires near the foreign ministry in Tripoli. (AP, HA, MEE 8/27; AJ, ALM, AP, BBC, GDN, HA, HA, MEE, MEMO, NYT, REU, REU, TOI 8/28; AJ, ALM, AP, MEE 8/29; AJ 8/30; ALM, HA 8/31; HA 9/1; AJ, AP 9/2; HA, REU 9/3; AJ 9/4)

In the West Bank, Israeli forces shot and injured 2 Palestinian minors during a raid in Rumana; others suffered tear-gas related injuries. Israeli forces also violently dispersed Palestinians during a raid in al-Arroub refugee camp, causing tear-gas related injuries. Elsewhere, Israeli forces razed farmland and olive trees in al-Zawiya to make room for water pipes connecting 2 Israeli settlements. Israeli forces also seized 1 bulldozer and construction equipment in Artas, seized 1 mobile home in Duma, and demolished 2 residential structures near Kafr Malik, displacing 17. 12 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Dura, Hebron, Dheisheh refugee camp, Kafr Ni‘ma, and Tulkarm. In the Naqab, Israeli authorities demolished 1 Palestinian-owned home in al-Buqei‘a Bedouin community, displacing 14. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 9/21; PCHR 9/22; UNOCHA 9/30)

The PA security forces and local militant factions in Nablus reached an agreement to end tensions in the city. The PA security forces reportedly promised not to arrest Palestinians in Nablus on behalf of Israel and that the PA would release many of those arrested on 9/20 during the unrest that followed the arrest of Hamas member Musab Ashtaya. (HA 9/22)

30 Palestinians held on administrative detention announced that they would start an open-ended hunger strike, demanding their freedom. The mass hunger strike is scheduled to begin on 9/25. (AJ 9/25)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas held meetings with leaders of the UK, Libya, Malta, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and Norway at the sidelines of the annual UNGA meeting. President Abbas also met with president of Nigeria Muhammadu Buhari at the UN building. (WAFA 9/21; WAFA 9/22)

UK prime minister Liz Truss told Israeli prime minister Yair Lapid, during a meeting on the sidelines of the UNGA, that she is considering moving the UK embassy of Israel to Jerusalem. A spokesperson for Prime Minister Truss told reporters that Truss’s government is reviewing the current location of the embassy. The PA condemned the news, saying that “opening an embassy in Jerusalem amounts to complicity in Israel’s illegal annexation of the city.” Prime Minister Lapid also met with Jordan’s King Abdullah II and UN secretary-general António Guterres. (ALM, NAT 9/21; AJ, DM, GDN, HA, IN, JP, MEE, MEMO, MEMO, REU, TOI, WAFA, WAFA 9/22; MEE 9/23; MEMO 9/24)

Saudi foreign minister Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud and EU high representative for foreign affairs Josep Borell convened a meeting with representatives from 25 countries, including the U.S. and the PA, to find ways to revamp the Arab Peace Initiative. (AX 9/21; WAFA 9/22)

The foreign ministers of Egypt, France, Jordan, and Germany held a meeting on the sidelines of the UNGA, focused on revamping the Middle East peace process. The 4 countries released a statement calling on resuming direct negotiations. (WAFA 9/22; WAFA 9/23)

In an interview with French media, Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy said that he was “in shock” over Israel’s refusal to supply air defense systems to Ukraine to help the country in its fight against the occupying Russian forces. (TOI 9/23; JP, MEE, REU 9/24; AJ 9/25)

In the West Bank, PA forces arrested 9 Palestinian protesters during a general strike in Hebron over rising food prices. Food prices have been rising throughout the world due to Russia’s blockade of Ukrainian wheat and global supply chain issues. In Palestine, prices on flour, sugar, and cooking oil have risen up to 30% in the last quarter. 1 Israeli settler opened fire at Palestinians, claiming they had thrown stones at him; no injuries were reported. Israeli forces delivered a demolition notice for part of a Palestinian home in al-Rakiz in the Masafer Yatta area. Israeli forces also raided Nabi Salih, firing tear gas at Palestinians protesting the incursion; no injuries were reported. Elsewhere, Israeli forces violently dispersed a Palestinian protest in Tubas, causing tear-gas related injuries. Israeli forces also delivered notices to Palestinians in Tarqumiyah informing them that 600 dunams (148 acres) of agricultural land will be seized by Israel to expand the settlements of Telem and Adora. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces raided Silwan, firing tear gas at Palestinians and causing injuries. In Jerusalem, Israeli right-wing activists raided the Greek Garden and the Church of Holy Trinity on Mount Zion, damaging property of the Greek Orthodox church. The Greek foreign ministry called on Israel to take “appropriate action” against the perpetrators. (AN, HA, REU, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 6/6; WAFA 6/7; HA, MDW, PCHR 6/9; UNOCHA 6/17)

The Israeli Knesset failed to pass the 1st vote on extending the Emergency Regulations – Judea and Samaria, Jurisdiction and Legal Aid, extending Israeli law to Israeli settlers living in the West Bank. 58 voted against and 52 voted for, as the Israeli right-wing opposition voted against the measure to trigger the dissolution of the coalition government. The emergency regulation expires at the end of June. 2 party members in the Israeli coalition, Mazen Ghanaim from the United Arab List and Ghaida Rinawie Zoabi from Meretz, voted against the bill, as did the members of the Joint Arab List. (AJ, AJ, AP, GDN, NYT, POL, TOI 6/6; ALM, HA, HA, JP, MDW, TOI 6/7; AP 6/8; AP, TOI 6/10)

The Palestinian Prisoner Society reported that 1 Palestinian prisoner who has been hunger-striking for 96 days in protest over his administrative detention was in critical condition. (WAFA 6/6)

Amnesty International (AI) called on Israel to “immediately release” Salah Hammouri, a Palestinian-French human rights lawyer who works for Addameer and who has been held in administrative detention since 3/7. AI also demanded that Israel ensure that Hammouri’s East Jerusalem residency status will not be revoked. (AI 6/6)

A survey conducted by the Israeli Democracy Institute found that 60% of Israeli Jews favored segregation from the country’s Palestinian community, up from 45% in last year’s survey. In comparison, about 20% of Palestinian citizens of Israel favored segregation. (HA 6/6)

In Syria, Syrian media reported that the Syrian military had intercepted Israeli missiles targeting Damascus. (HA, REU 6/6; JP, TOI 6/7)

U.S. senators Mitt Romney (R-UT) and Jon Ossoff (D-GA) sent a letter to U.S. secretary of state Antony Blinken, urging the Biden administration to ensure a “full and transparent investigation” into the killing of Palestinian American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh on 5/11 in Jenin refugee camp. The 2 senators gave the Biden administration 30 days to report on progress related to the investigation. (AJ, HA, MDW, MEE, TOI, WP 6/7)

Haaretz reported on recently released documents at the Israeli State Archive, which details conversations between Israeli and U.S. officials during the 1st Israeli Invasion of Lebanon. In the trove of released documents are conversations between then Israeli prime minister Menachem Begin and U.S. president Ronald Reagan, where President Reagan suggests that Palestinian refugees in Lebanon become Lebanese citizens. Prime Minister Begin responds by suggesting that Palestinians in Lebanon be deported to Libya, Iraq, Syria, or Saudi Arabia. (HA 6/6)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers blocked the main entrance to al-Naqura. Israeli forces shot and killed 1 Palestinian man, alleging that he had tried to stab a soldier at the Gush Etzion Junction between Bethlehem and Hebron. The PA called it an extrajudicial execution. 9 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Kobar, Kafr Ni‘ma, Ni‘lin, Beita, Izbat al-Tabib, and Qalqilya. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces evicted the 18-member Salhiya family from their home in Sheikh Jarrah, leading to a standoff where members of the family threatened to blow up a gas container on top of the house if the Israeli forces proceeded to demolish their home. A large crowd protested in support of the family. Several European representatives to Palestine and Israel, with some present at the scene, also condemned the eviction and called on Israel to stop it immediately. 1 Palestinian demolished his own commercial structure in Sheikh Jarrah. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Gaza; no injuries were reported. In Gaza, Israeli forces made incursions and leveled land north of Beit Lahiya. Israeli forces also opened fire at agricultural lands east of al-Qarara; no injuries were reported. (+972, AJ, AJ, F24, HA, HA, MEMO, MEMO, MEMO, REU, Twitter, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WP 1/17; EI, MEMO, MEMO 1/18; MEMO 1/19; PCHR 1/20)

Palestinian news outlet Safa and Israeli Channel 12 reported that the PA had frozen its work on preparing material for the ICC as a result of agreements made between PA president Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli defense minister Benny Gantz. (MEMO 1/18)

Israeli media reported that Libyan warlord and presidential contender Khalifa Haftar’s plane landed at Ben Gurion airport for a couple of hours before taking off again. In November it was reported that Haftar’s son and advisor Saddam Haftar had visited Israel for meetings with Israeli officials. (MEMO 1/17)

A possible drone attack in the UAE killed 3 Indian and Pakistani nationals and wounded 6 others at an oil facility and started a fire at the airport in Abu Dhabi. The Yemeni Houthi group said it was behind the attack. In a letter by Israeli prime minister Naftali Bennett, Israel offered the UAE “security and intelligence support” after the attack, saying “Israel stands with the UAE.” The UAE has been conducting air strikes with its coalition partner Saudi Arabia for years in Houthi-held areas of Yemen, causing many civilian deaths. (AJ, HA, MEMO 1/17; AJ, AJ, ALM, HA, MEMO, REU, REU 1/18; AJ, AP, MEMO 1/19; HA 1/20)

In the West Bank, 3 Israeli settlers set fire to a Palestinian marble factory in Jamma’in near Huwwara, causing damage of around $920,000. 6 Palestinians were arrested during raids in Zabbuba and al-Walaja. In East Jerusalem, 4 Palestinians were arrested in the Old City. In Gaza, an explosion at the Zawiya market killed 1, injured 14, and caused damage. According to the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR), the explosion was caused by explosives stored in a residential building at the market. After the PCHR reported its findings, it was smeared and threatened by the National and Islamic Factions’ Follow-up Committee in the Gaza Strip. In Israel, Israeli forces arrested 2 people who had crossed into Israel from Lebanon. (AJ, AP, HA, HA, MEMO, WAFA 7/22; PCHR 7/23; PCHR 7/25; AQ 7/26; PCHR 7/29)

Israel’s public security minister Omer Bar-Lev called PA president Mahmoud Abbas to wish him well on Eid al-Adha and said he used the oppounity to discuss more communications between the 2. (ALM, WAFA 7/22 HA 7/23)

Haaretz reported that although the ban on family reunifications for Israeli citizens married to Palestinians expired on 7/6, it has not been possible to make an appointment to process an application. According to Haaretz, interior minister Ayelet Shaked has ordered her ministry not to handle any of the requests until a new policy has been formulated. (HA, MEMO 7/22)

The Israeli government told the Israeli high court of justice that it would not grant work permits to Palestinians seeking asylum in Israel based on anti-LGBTQ persecution or domestic violence, saying that the PA “does not systematically persecute people because of their sexual orientation.” (HA 7/23)

In Syria, Israeli forces conducted air strikes for the 2d time in 1 week, this time in the Quseir region. It was unclear if there were any casualties. Syria’s military said its air defenses had intercepted most of the missiles. Russian officials later claimed that it was its air defenses in Syria that had intercepted the Israeli missiles. (AJ, AP, HA, REU 7/22; MEMO 7/23; HA 7/25)

French president Emmanuel Macron called Israeli prime minister Naftali Bennett for clarification about Macron being a target of Pegasus spyware exported from the Israeli company NSO Group with Israeli government approval. (HA 7/24; MEMO 7/25)

The African Union (AU) said it would readmit Israel as an observer country. Israel was ejected as an observer 19 years ago after pressure from then brotherly leader of Libya Muammar Gaddafi. The Israeli foreign ministry had prior to the readmission sent a senior official to Addis Ababa in Ethiopia to meet with 30 ambassadors to the AU. Hamas later issued a statement calling the AU decision “shocking and reprehensible.” The South African government called the AU decision appalling, “unjust and unwarranted.” Algeria, Egypt, Comoros, Tunisia, Djibouti, Mauritania, and Libya later voiced opposition to Israel’s readmission, saying that the decision could divide the AU nations. (HA, TOI 7/22; AJ, ALM, MEMO 7/23; MEMO, MEMO 7/26; AA, AJ 7/28; WAFA 8/1; MEMO, MEMO, MEMO 8/2; AJ, MEMO, MEMO 8/4; MEMO 8/9; MEE 8/11; AA 8/17; WAFA, WAFA 8/19)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers with military escort toured Sabastiyya, closing areas of the town off to Palestinians. Israeli settlers also set up a mobile home on Palestinian-owned land near Hebron. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers unleashed dogs on Palestinian shepherds and their sheep in Kisan, causing injuries to several sheep. Israeli forces seized 2 Palestinian-owned tractors north of Jericho. 10 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and around Ramallah, Salfit, Nablus, Ya‘bad, and Bayt Umar. In Gaza, Israeli forces made incursions and levelled farmland east of ‘Abasan and Khuza‘a. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 12/16; PCHR 12/17)

In the 1st of 3 votes, the Knesset approved a bill that would provide funding for Israeli settlement outposts in the West Bank and would retroactively give government approval for the settlements. Palestinian-Israeli MK Aida Touma-Sliman called the bill “a war crime under the auspices of the Knesset.” (HA, WAFA 12/17; WAFA 12/22)

The UN Security Council approved appointing UN Middle East envoy Nickolay Mladenov to be its new envoy to Libya and approved Norwegian national Tor Wennesland as the UN envoy to the Middle East. Wennesland was, prior to his new role, the Norwegian special envoy to the Middle East peace process. (TOI 12/14; AJ 12/16)

IDF troops on the Gaza border e. of Jabaliya open fire on agricultural areas nr. the border fence, causing no damage or injuries. Off the coast nr. Rafah, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats, causing no damage. In the West Bank, Israeli authorities order the demolition of an electricity grid nr. Nablus. Israeli forces deliver demolition orders to a Palestinian agricultural structure and 3 homes nr. Bethlehem; block off all entrances to a nearby village. IDF troops confront a group of 4 Palestinians nr. Nablus, assaulting them and arresting 1. The IDF conducts late-night raids and house searches in Tulkarm, Hebron, 1 village each nr. Nablus and Tubas, and 2 nr. Bethlehem, arresting 10 Palestinians and issuing an arrest summons to 1; patrols in 2 villages nr. Jenin and 1 each nr. Qalqilya and Ramallah. Meanwhile, thousands of Palestinians march through the streets of Ramallah commemorating the 67th anniversary of the Nakba. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces conduct house searches and raids in al-Ram, arresting 1 Palestinian. (MNA, WAFA 5/13; PCHR 5/14; PCHR 5/21)

ICC prosecutor Bensouda says that she has not been provided any official information from either the Palestinians or Israel relating to Israel’s assault on the Gaza Strip in 7–8/2014, and that, unless that changes, her decision to launch a full investigation will be based on publicly available materials. (AP, JP 5/13)

Israeli PM Netanyahu’s new govt. presents a document to the Knesset outlining the basic principles binding its ruling coalition. In language similar to that used for the 2009 and 2013 govts., it says that the govt. will work toward a peace agreement with the Palestinians, but it does not specify a 2-state solution. It also notes that “if an agreement of this kind is reached [with the Palestinians], it will be brought for the approval of the cabinet and Knesset, and if necessary, a national referendum as well.” (AFP, HA 5/13)

In an interview published today, U.S. Pres. Obama says that the U.S. is “taking a hard look” at its positions regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and that the Palestinians “deserve an end to the occupation and the daily indignities that come with it.” Obama is hosting several leaders of the GCC countries at a summit in Washington today to discuss regional issues. (AWS, HA, REU 5/13)

The head of the Palestinian Power and Natural Resources Authority Omar Kittanah announces that the PA cabinet has approved an initiative to connect the electricity grid in the West Bank to Jordan. The PA will begin looking for funding for the project, which is estimated to cost $100 m. It is part of a regional, 3-year initiative to connect the grids of Turkey, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Libya, Egypt, Jordan, and the oPt. (MNA 5/13)

The Vatican announces that it has concluded a treaty that will recognize the state of Palestine. (AP, NYT 5/13)

IDF troops on the n. Gaza border fire warning shots at Palestinians scavenging for construction materials in the former Erez industrial zone, forcing them to flee. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts early morning patrols in and around Tulkarm, midmorning patrols in 3 villages nr. Ramallah, afternoon patrols in Tulkarm town and r.c. (where stone-throwing Palestinians confront the troops, who respond with tear gas and percussion grenades, causing no injuries), and late-night patrols in al-Bireh, Salfit, and 2 villages nr. Jenin and Ramallah; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Salfit. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces raid the offices of the al-Quds Development Association in Dahiyat al-Barid, arresting the director and then raiding his home; later raid the al-Iman School in Bayt Hanina, arresting a teacher and then raiding his home. (PCHR 10/27; OCHA 10/28)

In Libya, rebel forces secure control of most of the country. The rebel-led Transitional National Council declares liberation and announces plans to form an interim government as Libyans celebrate nationwide. (WP 10/23, 10/24)

Abbas addresses the UNGA and officially submits the papers requesting full UN member-state status. UN secy.-gen. Ban Ki-Moon immediately sends the application to the UNSC. Rotating UNSC head, Lebanese amb. Nawaf Salam, says he will distribute it to UNSC mbrs. on 9/26. (NYT, WP, WT 9/24)

Netanyahu also addresses the UNGA session, calling on Abbas to resume talks immediately in New York, again without giving details on the basis or goal of talks. (WP 9/24) Within 3 hrs. of Abbas’s speech, the Quartet issues a vague statement calling on Israel and the Palestinians to return to talks within a month, with the objective of reaching a final agreement within a year. While Quartet special envoy Blair heralds this as “breakthrough,” UN and U.S. officials say the idea is to delay UNSC consideration of the Palestinian application to the UN on the assumption that if talks are “underway and making progress,” the UNSC would put off a vote in hopes that the parties could reach negotiated agreement. (State Dept. press release 9/23; NYT, WP, WT 9/24)

In the West Bank, 1,000s of Palestinians gather in Ramallah’s Clock Tower Square after dark to watch Abbas’s UN address televised live and celebrate the application for statehood. Similar rallies are held across the West Bank, but are banned in Gaza by Hamas authorities, who are angry that Abbas did not consult with Hamas over the process. Observers note (e.g., NYT, WP 9/24) that the “festive mood was tempered with resentment at . . . Obama’s firm stance against the initiative.” One Palestinian on the street states (WP 9/24): “We are choking on the American double standard. America supported the movements for freedom in Egypt, Tunis, Libya and Yemen, but this stops when it comes to the Palestinian people. We are asking, why?” During the day, the regular weekly protest against the separation wall in Bil‘in, al-Nabi Salih, and Ni‘lin are turned into rallies in support of the UN statehood initiative; in al-Nabi Salih, Palestinian demonstrators burn Israeli flags and posters of Obama. Similar small rallies are held at Qalandia r.c. The IDF fires rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas, and percussion grenades at the demonstrators, causing no serious injuries. (NYT, WP 9/24; PCHR 9/29; OCHA 9/30)

Meanwhile, nr. Kiryat Arba settlement in Hebron, a Palestinian boy is killed in a hit-and-run by a vehicle with Israeli plates. Later in the day in the same area, a Jewish settler man and his infant son, residents of Kiryat Arba, die in a car crash; the IDF says it was an accident, but local settlers accuse the army of covering up a murder, claiming that vengeful local Palestinians stoned the vehicle causing it to crash. The IDF denies the claims and expresses concern that settlers are attempting to provoke violence on the eve of Abbas’s UN speech. Meanwhile, unarmed Palestinians patrolling the outskirts of Qusra village in the n. West Bank (subject of numerous recent attacks by Jewish settlers fr. Esh Kodesh outpost) throw stones at a group of armed Jewish settlers that try to enter the village, sparking a clash; the IDF intervenes, firing tear gas and live ammunition at the Palestinians, killing 1 Palestinian and wounding 7. The IDF also patrols in 2 villages nr. Ramallah and Salfit in the morning, in Jericho in the afternoon, and in al-Bireh, 2 villages nr. Salfit, and 1 nr. Tulkarm late at night. (NYT, WP 9/24; PCHR 9/29)

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)

Palestinians fire 2 rockets (including 1 Grad) and 54 mortars fr. Gaza into Israel within 15 mins., lightly injuring 2 Israelis, damaging an empty kindergarten, and marking the largest barrage since OCL in 1/2009. Hamas acknowledges it fired 33 of the mortars, targeting IDF bases along the border in retaliation for a 3/16 Israeli air strike that killed 2 Hamas mbrs. Israel retaliates with heavy air strikes and tank fire on Hamas facility e. of Gaza City, killing a Hamas official and wounding at least 5 Palestinians (including at least 2 civilians); artillery fire throughout the morning directed at villages on the s. Gaza border with Israel, damaging a mosque in Abassan but causing no injuries; 4 air strikes on rocket-launching sites in s. Gaza, causing no reported injuries; and, late at night, artillery fire directed at suspicious movement nr. the s. Gaza border, killing 2 16-yr.-old Palestinians, allegedly armed. Meanwhile, a group of 10 armed, plain-clothed Palestinians claiming to be Hamas-affiliated security forces raid the Gaza City bureaus of CNN, NHK news channel, and Reuters, attacking journalists, destroying cameras, and confiscating tapes to punish them for filming Hamas police dispersing a 3/17 Palestinian rally. Hamas’s interior M Fathi Hamad denies the men were connected to Hamas, and Reuters confirms that the men did not show identification. In the West Bank, Jewish settlers fr. Dolev settlement nr. Ramallah set up a tent and hold Purim services on a nearby plot of Palestinian land; the IDF observes but does not intervene, and the settlers leave on their own the next morning (3/20). Jewish settlers attack Palestinians and international activists working an olive grove nr. Hebron; the IDF intervenes to remove the settlers. Jewish settlers fr. Suissa settlement nr. Hebron raid a nearby Palestinian farm, releasing 100s of sheep into crop fields; the IDF observes but does not intervene. Jewish settlers stone Palestinian cars driving nr. Hebron and Qalqilya. (AP, JP 3/19; JP, NYT, WP 3/20; PCHR 3/24; OCHA 4/1)

U.S., British, and French forces begin strikes (fr. planes and warships) on Libya. The forces target radar and antimissile batteries to enforce a no-fly zone against Qaddafi’s forces. (NYT, WP 3/20)

When protests in Dara’a resume today, Syrian security forces seal off the city and clash with the demonstrators. Violence in Dara’a continues through 3/22. (NYT, WP 3/20; NYT, WP 3/21)

Israeli warplanes overfly s. Gaza, dropping leaflets warning Palestinians not to enter the 300-m no-go zone along the border fence. Israel seals the West Bank until 3/21 for the Purim holiday. During the day, the IDF patrols in al-Bireh, Ramallah, Tulkarm (randomly stopping and searching vehicles), 4 villages nr. Qalqilya (searching several shops in 1 village but making no arrests), and 3 others nr. Jenin (ordering 4 Palestinians to appear for questioning). Late at night, the IDF patrols in Jericho and conducts arrest raids, house searches nr. Jenin. Jewish settlers beat a Palestinian laborer working inside Shilo settlement; a settlement security guard intervenes, calling Israel border police who transport the Palestinian to a Ramallah hospital. Jewish settlers burn the cars of 2 Palestinian laborers working in Keddumim settlement nr. Qalqilya. Later, Keddumim settlers stone Palestinian cars on a nearby road; the IDF intervenes to disperse them. Jewish settlers fr. Karnei Shomron settlement nr. Qalqilya stone passing Palestinian vehicles. In Gaza, Hamas-affiliated police break up 40 protesters rallying in Gaza City calling for national reconciliation, arresting 1 protester and 2 Palestinian cameramen covering the event. (AFP, NYT 3/18; PCHR 3/24; OCHA 4/1)

The UNSC authorizes (10-0, with Brazil, China, Germany, India, and Russia abstaining) “all necessary measures” short of foreign occupation to protect civilians in Libya, including calling for an immediate halt to the heavy fighting ongoing nationwide, imposition of a no-fly zone, and interdiction of ships heading to support Qaddafi’s forces. (NYT, WP, WT 3/18)

In the West Bank, the IDF raids and searches Palestinian villages around Itamar settlement, particularly in Awarta village, in search for the killers of 5 settlers found murdered on 3/11, detaining at least 20 young men for questioning. At least 27 attacks on Palestinians and their property by armed Jewish settlers retaliating for the Itamar murders are reported in Nablus (10), Hebron (9), Qalqilya (6), and Ramallah (2). Incidents involved: rampaging through Palestinian areas (6 cases, including an attempt to kidnap 2 children); vandalizing homes, businesses, and community buildings (11, including an attempt to set fire to a mosque); stoning and vandalizing cars (10); and cutting down olive trees (1). Meanwhile, a statement released to the press claims responsibility in the name of the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade of Imad Mughniyah; AMB officials deny any connection to the purported offshoot group. Netanyahu makes a televised address calling on settlers not to take matters into their own hands and to allow the IDF to search for the assailants, also calling on the PA to halt the incitement that encourages such attacks. Abbas issues a statement denouncing the killings. The IDF also conducts late-night patrols in Qalqilya and 3 nearby villages. (HA, JP 3/12; al-Hayat, JP, JTA, NYT, WP 3/13; PCHR 3/17; OCHA 3/18)

The Arab League calls on the UN to impose a no-fly zone over Libya and recognizes the rebels’ provisional govt., steps that NATO had requested as a precondition for Western intervention in Libya, where extremely heavy fighting continues. (NYT, WP, WT 3/13)

After Yemen’s opposition rejected (3/10) as insufficient a proposal by Pres. Saleh to discuss constitutional reform and again demanded he immediately step down, Saleh deploys troops to crush growing antigovernment protests, authorizing them to use water cannons, tear gas, live ammunition, and sniper fire. Over the next few days, injuries quickly rise into the 100s but demonstrations only grow, now involving 10,000s of protesters. (NYT, WP 3/13; WT 3/14; NYT 3/15, 3/16; NYT, WP, WT 3/17; WP 3/18; see also NYT, WP, WT 3/11)

IDF troops on the c. Gaza border fire on armed Palestinians operating e. of Dayr al-Balah, wounding 1. The IDF makes a day-long incursion into Khuza‘a village in s. Gaza to level lands and clear lines of sight. Israeli naval vessels fire on Palestinian fishing boats off the s. Gaza coast, forcing them to return to shore. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts morning arrest raids, house searches nr. Jenin; raids Hebron in the evening to arrest local human rights activists Issa ‘Amru on charges of incitement and affiliation with an illegal organization (the Youth Commission against Settlement in Hebron); conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Hebron and late-night patrols in villages nr. Jericho and Ramallah. In reaction to the IDF’s removal of 3 structures at Havat Gilad outpost on 2/28, Jewish settlers fr. Yitzhar implement their “price-tag doctrine” of retaliating against Palestinians for any action to curb settlers, throwing a Molotov cocktail at a Palestinian home and smashing the windows of 7 Palestinian cars nr. Nablus. (WT 3/2; PCHR 3/3; OCHA 3/4; WJW 3/10)

By this date, rebel forces in Libya have set up a provisional govt. in Benghazi and today call for international intervention (imposition of a no-fly zone, air strikes, supply of weapons but not ground forces) to topple Qaddafi. Analysts say the country looks poised for a “long and bloody stalemate.” Fierce fighting continues nationwide and more than 100,000 Libyans and foreigners have fled the country. The international community is meeting intensively to discuss options. (NYT, WP, WT 3/2; WP 3/3; NYT, WP, WT 3/4–8; NYT 3/9; WP, WT 3/11; NYT, WP 3/12)

Fayyad reiterates his 2/20 national unity offer, saying the PA would forgo further U.S. aid for the sake of national unity if the U.S. went through with threats to suspend aid to the PA if Hamas joined the govt. Abbas and senior Hamas officials agree to discuss the idea. (JPI 3/11)

At Abbas’s request, Israel agrees to allow some 300 Palestinians fleeing Libya to enter the West Bank. In Gaza, Islamic Jihad and Hamas mbrs. detonate an explosive device by the border fence as an IDF patrol passes on the Israeli side, then fire 3 mortars at the troops, causing no injuries. IDF soldiers retaliate with tank and gunfire, killing 1 armed Palestinian and wounding 6 armed Palestinians and at least 3 bystanders (including 2 children). Late at night, the IDF makes 5 air strikes on buildings in central and southern Gaza, causing no injuries; in the 1 instance in which a building is occupied, Israeli intelligence units phone to warn the occupants to leave. An 11-yr.-old Palestinian girl is killed and 4 family mbrs. are wounded when explosives accidentally detonate in their Gaza home. The IDF makes a brief incursion into c. Gaza to level land along the border fence to clear lines of sight. IDF troops on the n. Gaza border fire warning shots at Palestinian scavenging for construction materials in the fmr. settlement sites, wounding 2 Palestinian. Late in the evening, Israeli naval vessels fire on Palestinian fishing boats off the n. Gaza coast, forcing them to return to shore. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in ‘Aqabat Jabir refugee camp (r.c.) in the morning, photographing historic sites; conducts latenight patrols in Birzeit and 1 village nr. Tulkarm; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches, and patrols in and around Jenin r.c. (DPA, HA, IsRN, JP, NYT, REU, WAFA 2/23; PCHR, WP 2/24; PCHR 3/3; OCHA 3/4)

Israeli naval vessels intercept a Palestinian fishing boat off the n. Gaza coast, escort it to Ashdod, confiscate the boat, and release the fishermen. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 4 villages nr. Jericho, Qalqilya, Salfit, and Tulkarm in the afternoon, and 1 village nr. Tulkarm late at night. From Ramallah, FCC mbr. Tawfik Tirawi calls for a “day of rage” against the 2/18 U.S. veto; protests denouncing the U.S. are held in Bethlehem, Hebron, Jenin, Nablus, and Tulkarm. For safety, the U.S. consulate in East Jerusalem restricts staff movement for 3 days. (HA, Oxfam International, WP 2/20; PCHR 2/24; OCHA 2/25)

In Libya, security forces in Benghazi open fire on some 20,000 mourners leaving funerals of antigovernment protesters killed in recent clashes, leaving at least 84 dead and scores injured and bringing the death toll in 3 days of clashes to as many as 200 dead and nearly 850 wounded in Benghazi alone. British embassy officials say they have received reports of govt. forces using heavy weapons and snipers against protesters. From this point, antigovernment demonstrations and fierce military repression escalate sharply, and opposition groups take up arms. (NYT, WP 2/20; NYT, WP, WT 2/21)

Overnight, IDF troops on the n. Gaza border fire on and shell a group of Palestinians nr. the n. Gaza border fence, killing 3 Palestinians; Palestinians say the 3 were unarmed men attempting to sneak into Israel to find work, but the IDF claims they were armed men preparing to lay explosive devices along the border. In the West Bank, the IDF demolishes 3 wells and an agricultural storehouse nr. a settler-only bypass road nr. Hebron; seals and patrols in Jit nr. Qalqilya during the afternoon. In Ramallah, some 1,000 young Palestinians hold a rally calling for national unity and reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas. (AFP, WP 2/18; PCHR 2/24; OCHA 2/25)

U.S. pres. Barack Obama phones PA pres. Mahmud Abbas to urge him to delay a 2/18 vote on a UN Security Council (UNSC) res. reaffirming that Israeli settlements are illegal and an obstacle to peace or agree to a compromise UNSC presidential statement (less than a res.) criticizing settlements and urging the sides to resume negotiations. Abbas agrees to convene an emergency meeting of the PLO Exec. Comm. (PLOEC) and Fatah Central Comm. (FCC) to consider the matter. (HA 2/17; HA, MNA, NYT 2/18)

After violence overnight (see 2/16), Bahrain’s govt. declares martial law, deploying the military to the streets and warning of a “sectarian abyss”; the main Shi‘i political party withdraws fr. parliament, protesting the acts of the minority Sunni leadership; and opposition groups call for massive demonstrations after Friday prayers on 2/18. (NYT, WP, WT 2/18)

In Libya, protesters in 5 main cities observe a “Day of Rage” against Qaddafi, clashing with govt. forces, leaving at least 12 protesters dead and 10s wounded; the govt. cuts phone and Internet service and bars journalists to prevent coverage. Serious clashes in and around Benghazi continue on 2/18. (NYT, WP, WT 2/18; NYT, WP 2/19)

As the quarter opens, Israel maintains a tight siege of Gaza aimed at unseating the governing Hamas authority, in control since 6/2007. The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) enforces a 300-m deep no-go zone inside the full length of the Gaza border and limits the Palestinian fishing zone off Gaza to 500–1,000 m off the immediate Bayt Lahiya and Rafah coasts, and 3 naut. mi. elsewhere—restrictions that place 17% of Gaza’s total landmass, including 35% of its viable agricultural areas, and 85% of the maritime areas allocated to the Palestinians under the Oslo accords off limits to Palestinians. In the West Bank, governed by the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority (PA), IDF operations and restrictions on movement and access continue but are relatively low. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in Tulkarm before dawn and in Birzeit late at night; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Nablus. (PCHR 2/17, 2/24; OCHA 2/25)

Regionwide antigovernment protests, which toppled the Egyptian and Tunisian regimes last quarter, continue (see Quarterly Update in this issue and in JPS 159). In Bahrain, demonstrators for the 1st time shift fr. calling for a transition to a constitutional monarchy to calling for the ouster of the monarchy altogether. Syria sees its 1st hint of unrest when more than 500 protesters in Damascus spontaneously rally to the defense of a motorist being beaten by a police officer and refuse to disperse, chanting “The Syrian people will not tolerate humiliation” for more than 3 hrs. until Interior M Saed Samour personally goes to the scene to pledge to punish the policeman. Major clashes between govt. forces and protesters seeking regime change are reported in eastern Libya, while modest demonstrations in Yemen call for the president to step down. (NYT, WP, WT 2/17)

After receiving a warning fr. Egypt that Israel is serious about preventing further rocket and mortar fire fr. Gaza, Hamas authorities hold a 2d mtg. (see 1/11) with smaller factions to urge them to adhere to a cease-fire, then deploys IQB mbrs. along the border and at makeshift checkpoints on roads leading toward the border to deter groups fr. firing into Israel. In the West Bank, the IDF steps up patrols dramatically, operating in 8 villages nr. Qalqilya, 3 nr. Jenin, 1 nr. Ramallah, and 1 nr. Tulkarm between late morning and late afternoon, arresting 1 stone-throwing teenager nr. Tulkarm and summoning several residents of Bayt Qad nr. Qalqilya for questioning; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Jenin and Qalqilya. Jewish settlers fr. a settlement outpost nr. Nablus attack a Palestinian farmer working his field nearby; when nearby villagers come to the farmers aid, IDF troops intervene, firing rubber-coated steel bullets and tear gas at the Palestinians, seriously injuring 2 and moderately injuring 1. (NYT, WP 1/14; PCHR 1/20; OCHA 1/21)

In Tunisia, opposition forces call for massive antigovernment demonstrations after Friday prayers on 1/14 to demand Pres. Ben Ali’s immediate resignation. In the days since 12/29/2010, protests have increasingly come to reflect deep-seated frustration with overall government corruption and lack of political freedom, rather than just economic angst. The major riots that first roiled the countryside have become increasingly violent and spread nationwide, reaching the capital on 1/12 and the key resort city of Hammamet (where Ben Ali and his extended family have residences) on 1/13, leaving at least 30 dead. In effort to quell protests, Ben Ali has simultaneously moved to appease and clamp down on critics, pledging to investigate government corruption and recent “excesses” by the security forces and firing his interior minister (directly responsible for orchestrating the crackdown on demonstrators), but also deploying army units and riot police around Tunis and imposing a nighttime curfew, blaming “foreign terrorists and Islamic radicals capitalizing on the frustrations of the unemployed.” Rumors suggest that close relatives of Ben Ali, including billionaire businessman Muhammad Sakher El Materi (his son-in-law and heir apparent), have already fled the country. Today, Ben Ali gives a hastily prepared television address. Appearing unsettled, he orders security forces to hold their fire and release jailed protesters, agrees to make other minor reforms, and pledges to give up the presidency when he turns 75 (in 2014) in keeping with the constitution, but rejects demands to step down immediately and end his 23-yr. authoritarian rule. In a threatening move, however, he withdraws the army fr. Tunis, replacing them with special police and other security forces more loyal to his ruling party. Credible rumors say the shift has come about because Tunisia’s army chief Gen. Rachid Ammar has refused Ben-Ali’s orders to shoot demonstrators. By this date, small protests inspired by Tunisian demonstrators have been held in Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Libya, and Morocco denouncing unemployment and corruption among the ruling elites, but are not perceived as destabilizing. (NYT, WP 1/13; NYT 1/14, 1/17, 2/24; see also WP 1/10, NYT 1/12)

Meeting in Libya, Arab League FMs strongly endorse the 10/2 Palestinian decision to halt direct talks with Israel until Israel halts settlement construction, pledging to meet again in 1 mo. to discuss alternatives and decide on next steps; a meeting is set for 11/9. (REU 10/8; MNA, NYT, UNSCO, WP 10/9; al-Ahram Weekly 10/8–14)

Overnight, in the West Bank, the IDF raids a Palestinian residential building in Hebron, killing 2 IQB mbrs. in an exchange of fire (with the IDF firing machine guns, medium-caliber bullets, and grenades) and then bulldozing the structure, also destroying an adjacent store, heavily damaging 4 houses and another store nearby, and arresting 12 Palestinians. The IQB mbrs. allegedly were behind the 8/31 shooting of 4 Jewish settlers nr. Hebron; Palestinians do not consider their deaths willful killings or assassinations. The IDF also patrols in 3 villages n. of Tulkarm late at night, making no arrests. Palestinians (accompanied by Israeli and international activists in some locations) hold weekly nonviolent demonstrations against the separation wall, land confiscations, and settlement expansion in Bil‘in, Ni‘lin, Nabi Salih/Dayr Nizam. IDF soldiers fire rubbercoated steel bullets, tear gas, and stun grenades at the protesters; 10s suffer tear gas inhalation and a 13-yr.-old Palestinian is moderately wounded. In East Jerusalem, a Jewish settler deliberately attempts to run down a group of Palestinian stonethrowing children with his car in Silwan, injuring 2 (both age 10). Also in East Jerusalem, 2 settlement guards posted outside a Palestinian house previously seized by settlers beat a local Palestinian working on his home nearby; the IDF observes but does not intervene until the Palestinian begins to fight back, at which point they arrest him and order him to stay away from his home for 1 wk. (WP 10/9; PCHR 10/14; OCHA 10/15)

Israel reports that a Libyan ship that had threatened to run the Gaza blockade (see 7/11) has diverted toward the Egyptian port of al-Arish, defusing a potential crisis; the Egyptian Red Crescent Society will take the goods to Gaza through the Rafah terminal. (Israel had been urging Egypt and Italy to intervene with Libya to encourage it to divert the boat.) Meanwhile, IDF troops on the c. Gaza border shell residential areas of Gaza Valley village after spotting “suspicious figures” in the area, hitting 1 home, killing 1 Palestinian woman and wounding 3 civilians in and around the house. Israeli naval vessels fire on Palestinian fishing boats off the n. Gaza coast, forcing them back to shore. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Jenin, Salfit. Israeli authorities demolish 6 Palestinian homes in and around East Jerusalem (3 in Issawiyya, 1 in Bayt Hanina, 2 in Jabal Mukabir). (NYT, WP, WT 7/14; PCHR 7/15; OCHA 7/16)

The Arab League ends 2 days of talks in Libya to debate whether to re-endorse proximity talks without reaching an agreement, though members renew support for the 2002 Arab League initiative offering full normalization for full peace. (WP 3/29; WJW 4/1)

The IDF makes a brief incursion into s. Gaza e. of Abasan to level land along the border fence to clear lines of sight. In the West Bank, 10s of Palestinians, Christian clerics, and international activists take part in a nonviolent march from Bethlehem to the main IDF checkpoint to Jerusalem to protest Israeli restrictions on Christians entering Jerusalem today, Palm Sunday; IDF troops beat marchers, arrest 12 Palestinians (including Fatah Central Comm. mbr. Abbas Zaki; all are released on 4/1) and 4 internationals (releasing them later in the day), and seal the Gilo crossing to Jerusalem (including to medical cases and tourists) through 3/31. (OCHA, PCHR 4/1)

In Rome, King Abdallah of Jordan holds talks with Italian officials, who agree to forgive or reschedule $130 m. of Jordan's debt. The king then heads to Aqaba, where he receives Israeli PM Barak for brief talks on the peace process. Barak promises to honor all agmts. with the Palestinians, including the Wye accord; says he has received positive messages fr. Damascus, hopes that negotiations with Syria will resume soon. (RJ 7/13, JT 7/14 in WNC 7/15; JT [Internet], MM, NYT 7/14)

PA Planning M Shaath says that the PA, under U.S. pressure to avoid friction with the new Israeli government, will seek the speedy adjournment of the 7/15 UN mtg. of the signatories to the Fourth Geneva Convention. The mtg. was planned as an open-ended session to consider possible sanctions against Israel for human rights violations and settlement activity in the occupied territories. (AFP, MBC 7/13 in WNC 7/15; NYT, WT 7/14)

In Iran, student demonstrations devolve into riots, with clashes btwn. student groups, other individuals on the one hand and police, Ansar-e Hezbollah mbrs. on the other. Some 1,400 demonstrators have been arrested over the past 6 days. (GIU, MM 7/13; AFP, IDF Radio, IRIB Television 7/13 in WNC 7/15; CSM, MM, NYT, WP 7/14; MEI 7/16; WP 7/18)

Lebanon asks the UN to investigate reports that Israel has again been stealing soil fr. s. Lebanon. The UN, U.S. intervened with Israel in 11/98 after the IDF confirmed that Israelis were hauling fertile topsoil fr. occupied s. Lebanon into Israel. (VOL 7/13 in WNC 7/15; WT 7/14; al-Ba`th 7/19 in WNC 7/23) (see 11/6/98)

In Tripoli, Iranian, Libyan officials discuss expanding bilateral ties. (IRNA 7/14 in WNC 7/15)

ILMG meets for 1st time since 6/24 incidents; discusses 16 Lebanese complaints, 21 Israeli complaints. (RL 7/13 in WNC 7/15; Tishrin 7/15 in WNC 7/20) (see 7/8)

At the UN, U.S., Libyan officials hold 1st mtg. in 18 yrs. U.S. says it will not support full lifting of sanctions until Libya halts support of international terrorism, acknowledges responsibility for and compensates victims of Pan Am 103 bombing. (NYT, WT 6/12; JANA [Tripoli] 6/12 in WNC 6/14) (see 4/5)

An IDF officer is wounded during a clash with Hizballah in s. Lebanon. (VOL 6/12 in WNC 6/14)