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  • March 24, 2017

    IDF troops violently disperse Palestinians, Israelis, and international activists at Friday demonstrations against Israel’s occupation, separation wall, settlements, and killing of a Palestinian...

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  • February 5, 2015

    In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops arrest a Palestinian man at the Erez border crossing. Off the coast nr. Bayt Lahiya, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats, causing no damage or...

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  • January 22, 2015

    In the Gaza Strip, Egyptian authorities keep the Rafah border crossing open for a 3d day. Meanwhile, unknown assailants blow up the car of a local Fatah leader using a flammable liquid. Off the...

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  • December 8, 2014

    In the Gaza Strip, gas shipments are held as a result of a dispute between the Palestinian Ministry of Finance in Gaza and the Palestinian Gen. Directorate of Petroleum. In the West Bank, an...

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  • November 18, 2014

    Two Palestinian men attack a synagogue in West Jerusalem, killing 4 rabbis and 1 Druze policeman, and injuring around 8 others. Policemen shoot and kill the 2 men. Later in the day, Israeli...

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  • November 15, 2014

    Off the coast of the Gaza Strip nr. Rafah, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats, causing severe damage but no injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and...

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  • May 7, 2014

    In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops open fire on armed Palestinians close to the border fence nr. Dayr al-Balah, injuring 1. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 2...

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  • August 8, 2012

    Unidentified Palestinians fire 1 Qassam rocket fr. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF enters 1 village nr. Jenin in the afternoon, searching a car repair...

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  • January 10, 2012

    The IDF makes a brief incursion into n. Gaza to level land and clear lines of sight along the border e. of Jabaliya town. In the West Bank, the IDF bulldozes Palestinian land in Azariyya (just...

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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 29, 2008

    As Israel continues widespread air and naval bombardment of Gaza for a 3d day, Israeli DM Barak declares “all-out war” on Hamas. The IDF declares a 2-mi. buffer zone around the Strip a closed...

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  • September 10, 2008

    In the West Bank, the IDF makes an early-evening raid into Nablus, occupying several buildings in Ras al-‘Ayn neighborhood as observation posts, raiding an apartment building to capture 2 wanted...

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  • May 11, 2008

    Gaza’s power plant shuts down completely for lack of fuel. A Palestinian teenager (brother of the teenager who died on 5/8) succumbs to injuries sustained during the IDF’s 5/7 raid on Abasan. In...

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  • October 30, 2007

    The IDF makes an air strike on an ESF post in Abasan in s. Gaza, killing 4 ESF officers; makes a 2d air strike on a suspected rocket-launching site in Jabaliya r.c., hitting a home, wounding 6...

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  • May 23, 2007

    The IDF makes at least 4 air strikes on Gaza targeting Hamas, attempting to assassinate Hamas mbr. Muhammad Shatat as he drives in Gaza City (causing no injuries), hitting 2 suspected weapons...

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  • August 4, 2006

    The IDF continues operations al-Shuka, making air and artillery strikes on buildings allegedly housing Hamas and Islamic Jihad weapons caches, exchanging fire with Palestinian gunmen, conducting...

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  • September 1, 2005

    The IDF shoots, wounds 2 Palestinians nr. the evacuated Gush Katif settlement bloc; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and nr. Hebron. Israel deports 2 Palestinian prisoners who hold...

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  • February 12, 2005

    The IDF raids, searches a PA security office in Salfit; detains 60 officers for ID checks, claiming to look for wanted men; makes no arrests. A Jewish settler fr. Keddumim beats, chases away 2...

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  • February 11, 2005

    The IDF expels Palestinian families fr. 2 Palestinian homes in Hebron allegedly to protect Jewish settlers fr. Kiryat Arba who pass by the area. (PCHR 2/17)

    In the Galilee village of Mughar...

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  • August 10, 2003

    The IDF conducts arrest raids in Bayt Furik, nr. Hebron; imposes a curfew on Hebron; fires on residential areas of Dayr al-Balah, Khan Yunis for the 2d night in a row; bulldozes 5 dunams of land...

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  • April 28, 2003

    IDF undercover units raid Jenin, arresting local Islamic Jihad leader Abu Ali Kasi, 3 associates, killing 1 Palestinian bystander. The IDF also conducts arrest raids in Nablus (targeting the tanz...

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  • February 19, 2003

    The IDF makes a predawn raid on Nablus, killing 2 Palestinians (ages 16 and 60), occupying 2 schools and several buildings. In response to the IDF’s overnight attack on Gaza, Hamas fires 4 Qassam...

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  • March 2, 2001

    Israeli-Palestinian clashes continue, leaving 3 Palestinian dead, including a 9-yr.-old boy hit by IDF gunfire inside his home. A 4th Palestinian dies of injuries received earlier....

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  • June 11, 2000

    Bashar al-Asad is promoted to lt. gen., named cmdr. of the Syrian army, and unanimously nominated by the Ba'th party as its candidate for pres. Across Syria, masses of mourners hold public rallies...

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  • March 1, 2000

    The Knesset, including much of Barak's governing coalition, approves (60-53) a draft bill designed to block a Golan withdrawal by requiring a referendum on a peace agmt. with Syria...

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IDF troops violently disperse Palestinians, Israelis, and international activists at Friday demonstrations against Israel’s occupation, separation wall, settlements, and killing of a Palestinian youth in Jalazun r.c. on 3/23 in 5 villages nr. Ramallah (Nabi Salih, Bil‘in, Kafr Malik, al-Mughayyir, and Ni‘lin), Kafr Qaddum nr. Qalqilya, and in c. Hebron; 5 Palestinians are injured. They also arrest 2 Palestinians during raids nr. Ramallah and Nablus and patrol nr. Nablus and Hebron. In East Jerusalem, Palestinians conduct a sit-in outside the gates of al-Aqsa Mosque to protest Israel’s withholding of corpses of Palestinians killed in confrontations with the IDF. Israeli forces then impose heightened security restrictions at Haram al-Sharif, searching youths in the area and denying many Palestinians access to the sanctuary. Separately, Israeli forces arrest 4 Palestinians during raids in the Old City. In Israel, 4 Jewish Israelis stab and seriously injure a Palestinian citizen of Israel nr. his home in Nahariya. (MNA 3/24; MNA 3/25; PCHR 3/30)

Unidentified assailants shoot and kill senior Hamas military official and former Israeli prisoner Mazen Fuqaha in s. Gaza City. In a statement released later in the day, Hamas implies that Israel was likely behind the killing. (HA, JP, TOI 3/24; MNA 3/25)

UN special coordinator Nickolay Mladenov tells the UN Security Council that Israel has not complied with UNSC Res. 2334, which passed on 12/23/2016. Israeli settlement construction has increased in the past 3 mos., despite the resolution’s call for a halt in such activity, according to Mladenov. Meanwhile, the UNHRC adopts 4 res. on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict: the first calls on mbr.-states to avoid ties with Israel’s settlements in the oPt, the 2d reaffirms the Palestinians’ right to self-determination, the 3d concerns human rights in the oPt, and the 4th condemns Israel for violating the human rights of Syrian Druze of the Golan Heights. (HA, JP, TOI 3/24; WAFA 3/25)

In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops arrest a Palestinian man at the Erez border crossing. Off the coast nr. Bayt Lahiya, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, IDF troops shoot and injure a Palestinian man in Hebron after he tries to grab a soldier’s gun. The IDF patrols nr. Hebron and Jenin, sparking clashes with stone-throwing residents; 2 Palestinians are injured. At night, they conduct a raid in the village nr. Jenin and arrest 1 Palestinian. Israeli forces also detain 2 Palestinians collecting steel outside a settlement nr. Qalqilya. Israeli settlers spray olive trees nr. Qalqilya with chemicals, completely destroying 5; establish a new settlement outpost s. of Nablus, erecting movable houses, water tanks, and a fence. An Israeli settler hits a Palestinian youth with his car in s. Hebron, causing minor injuries, then flees the scene. PA security forces patrol in Balata r.c. nr. Nablus, sparking a firefight with armed Palestinian residents; 3 PA officers are injured. In East Jerusalem, Israeli police remove a prominent right-wing Jewish activist from Haram al-Sharif after he confronts a group of Muslim worshippers. In n. Israel, Jewish Israelis assault a Druze Palestinian IDF soldier in a nightclub nr. Haifa after they overhear him speaking Arabic. (JP, MNA, TOI 2/5; TOI 2/7; MNA 2/10)

In the Gaza Strip, Egyptian authorities keep the Rafah border crossing open for a 3d day. Meanwhile, unknown assailants blow up the car of a local Fatah leader using a flammable liquid. Off the coast nr. al-Sudaniyya, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats, causing damage. Meanwhile, IDF troops e. of Rafah open fire on agricultural land along the border fence, causing damage. In the West Bank, Israeli forces demolish several residential and storage structures owned by Palestinians nr. Jerusalem and deliver a stop-work order to a construction site nr. Hebron. The IDF patrols nr. Hebron and Jenin; raids 3 homes in Tulkarm overnight belonging to friends and family of the Palestinian man who stabbed 13 Jewish Israelis in Tel Aviv on 1/21, arresting 2. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces conduct arrest raids in al-Tur. In West Jerusalem, around 10 Jewish Israelis attack a Palestinian Druze university student, severely injuring him, after they hear him speaking in Arabic. (MNA, WAFA 1/22; HA 1/23; PCHR 1/29)

PA PM Hamdallah meets with Swedish consul-gen. Ann-Sofie Nilsson in Ramallah. Hamdallah calls on the international community to pressure Israel into unfreezing the transfers of tax revenue to the PA, which have been held since 1/2. Meanwhile, reps. of the PA and Russia meet and sign 2 bilateral agreements, which will establish joint comms. to supervise economic cooperation between them. (MNA 1/22, 1/23)

In Israel, the major non-Zionist parties— Hadash, Balad, Ta’al, and Ra’am—announce that they have agreed to run on a joint list in the 3/17 election. Ayman Odeh, newly elected chair of Hadash, will lead the list. Earlier in the day, the Knesset House Comm. approved the request to split the Ra’am and Ta’al parties, which were joined at the United Arab List in the current Knesset under Ahmad Tibi’s leadership. (HA, TOI 1/22; +972, HA, NYT 1/23)

The State Dept. announces that neither Pres. Obama nor Secy. of State Kerry will meet with Israeli PM Netanyahu when he visits Washington to address a special session of Congress on 3/3. A State Dept. spokesperson cites “long-standing practice and principle” when explaining why the pres. would not meet with another head of state 2 weeks ahead of his or her national election. (HA, JP 1/22; JTA 2/1)

Sixty-three of the 751 mbrs. of the EU parliament send a letter to foreign affairs chief Mogherini asking her to suspend the EU-Israel Association Agreement, which has governed the trade relationship since 2000. The 63 MEPs cite serious violations of international law committed during OPE. (WAFA 1/27; EI 2/4)

In the Gaza Strip, gas shipments are held as a result of a dispute between the Palestinian Ministry of Finance in Gaza and the Palestinian Gen. Directorate of Petroleum. In the West Bank, an Israeli settler stabs a Palestinian man e. of Hebron, causing moderate injuries. Hours later, Israeli settlers attack a 12-year-old Palestinian in the H2 area of Hebron, causing major bruising. In response, the IDF sets up several mobile checkpoints around Hebron, and later detain and beat 1 Palestinian. Following the 3 incidents, hundreds of Israeli soldiers and a group of private settler security officers conduct military drills n. of Hebron. They also conduct house searches nr. Hebron and Salfit. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers and soldiers continue leveling land around the Ahiya outpost nr. Nablus. Unknown assailants throw stones at a bus full of Israeli settlers in the Gush Etzion settlement bloc nr. Jerusalem. Right-wing Jewish activists enter Haram al-Sharif with an escort of Israeli intelligence officers and soldiers. Meanwhile, Israeli police detain 1 Palestinian woman at an entrance to the compound. Israeli forces conduct arrest raids and house searches nr. Hebron and Salfit; patrol in Anata r.c., sparking clashes with stone-throwing residents. Israeli security forces also arrest an 11-year-old Palestinian for throwing stones at an Egged bus nr. the Old City, and later take him to alMaskubiya prison. In the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, Israeli police arrest 9 Druze for raising Hizballah flags at public events in recent mos. In the Negev, Israeli forces demolish several homes in the unrecognized bedouin village al-‘Araqib. (JP, MNA, WAFA, YA 12/8; IMEMC, MEMO, MNA, WAFA 12/9; PCHR 12/10)

The Knesset approves a motion to dissolve itself, officially setting 3/17/2015 as the date for national elections. Israel’s major parties begin discussions about potential coalitions, blocs, and joint lists. Before the vote, PM Netanyahu, in his capacity as acting fin. min., asks the Knesset Finance Comm. to allocate $20 m. for settlements in the West Bank. (HA, JP, MEMO, NYT, TOI, YA 12/8; YA 12/9)

The 122 mbr. states of the International Criminal Court (ICC) grant Palestine observer status, which is seen as symbolically advancing the Palestinians toward signing the Rome Statute and attaining full membership at the ICC. (AP, NYT 12/9)

A delegation of Hamas officials arrives in Tehran for talks on repairing ties with the Iranian govt. The visit is reportedly a prelude to a future visit of Hamas leader Khalid Mishal. (MEMO, WAFA, YA 12/9; TOI, YA 2/17)

Two Palestinian men attack a synagogue in West Jerusalem, killing 4 rabbis and 1 Druze policeman, and injuring around 8 others. Policemen shoot and kill the 2 men. Later in the day, Israeli security forces raid the men’s homes in Jabal Mukabir, East Jerusalem, and arrest 12 of their relatives. Clashes break out between Palestinians and Israeli officers in the neighborhood, injuring 22 Palestinians with tear gas and rubber-coated metal bullets. More clashes erupt in Sur al-Bahir, Wadi al-Juz, and al-Tur. Israeli PM Netanyahu orders the punitive demolition of the 2 men’s homes, and adds additional border police in Jerusalem. (HA, JP, MNA, NYT 11/18; MNA 11/19, 11/20; ALM 11/21)

A 15-year-old Palestinian dies in a hospital in Turkey, succumbing to injuries sustained on 7/21 in Gaza during Israel’s Operation Protective Edge (OPE). (PCHR 11/20)

In the Gaza Strip, public servants in ministry offices, schools, and public universities begin a general strike, protesting the fact that their full salaries haven’t been paid for over a year. In the West Bank, Palestinians nr. Tulkarm protest the recent Israeli violence in Jerusalem, sparking clashes with IDF soldiers. Dozens of Israeli settlers attack a Palestinian school in ‘Urif village nr. Nablus in response to the killing of the 4 rabbis, and IDF troops injure 6 Palestinians with rubber-coated metal bullets, including a Reuters cameraman. Meanwhile, an Israeli settler shoots and seriously injures a Palestinian youth after a settler demonstration e. of Ramallah and Israeli settlers attack a Palestinian home s. of Nablus. Separately, settlers throw rocks at Palestinian vehicles nr. Nablus and Hebron. IDF troops shoot and injure a Palestinian in Baytin village nr. Ramallah. Also, IDF troops search the Hebron homes of 2 of the Palestinian men accused of kidnapping and killing 3 Israeli settler teenagers on 6/12; and raid Bayt Umar village. In East Jerusalem, Israeli settlers stab a Palestinian man on the street in Kafr ‘Aqab, moderately injuring him. Separately, Israeli minister of internal security Yitzhak Aharonovitch enters Shu‘fat r.c. and Palestinian youth throw stones and bottles at him. In the ensuing clashes with Israeli security forces, several Palestinians suffer from tear gas inhalation. Israeli forces demolish the home of the Palestinian man who was killed by police after driving a vehicle into a group of pedestrians on 10/22. Also, Israeli police arrest a Palestinian man on the charge of incitement after he posts videos and images to a Facebook page supporting violence against Israelis. (MNA, SAFA, WAFA 11/18; MNA 11/19; PCHR 11/20; JP 11/24)

Palestinian bus drivers working for the Israeli bus company Egged go on strike in protest of the death of their colleague on 11/16. Over 40 of them quit after Egged decides not to provide additional security. (IMEMC 11/19; AFP 12/4)

Reps. of Iran and the P5+1 (U.S., UK, China, France, Russia, and Germany) resume negotiations in Vienna over Iran’s disputed nuclear program, aiming to meet the Joint Plan of Action’s extended deadline of 11/24. In London, U.S. Secy. of State Kerry meets with Oman’s FM Yusuf bin Alawi, a mediator in the talks with Iran. (GDN, HA 11/18; AP 11/19; NYT 11/20)

The Spanish parliament passes a symbolic res. urging recognition of Palestine as a state after Israel and the Palestinians negotiate a res. to their conflict. (IHY, REU 11/18)

Off the coast of the Gaza Strip nr. Rafah, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats, causing severe damage but no injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 2 villages nr. Ramallah and 1 village nr. Hebron; patrols in Salfit and 2 nearby villages, as well as 2 villages and al-Fawar r.c. nr. Hebron. Meanwhile, 1,000s of Palestinians march in Bethlehem to mark 2 anniversaries: the death of Yasir Arafat, as well as the signing of the Palestinian declaration of independence in 1988. In the Galilee, Druze and Muslim Palestinians clash in Abu Snan, leaving 37 injured. The fighting is born from tensions related to the 11/8 killing of a Palestinian by an Israeli police officer in Kafr Kanna. (MNA 11/15; PCHR 11/20)

In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops open fire on armed Palestinians close to the border fence nr. Dayr al-Balah, injuring 1. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 2 villages each nr. Hebron and Nablus at night; patrols in al-‘Arub and 1 village nr. Hebron at night. Meanwhile, shots are fired toward a house in West Bank settlement Psagot, causing no injuries. In Israel, Jewish extremists leave “price tag” graffiti on a Druze-owned dentistry office in Yokneam. In East Jerusalem, a separate “price tag” attack targets Vaticanowned offices with graffiti. (AFP, HA, JP, MNA 5/7; PCHR 5/8)

U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice arrives in Jerusalem and holds a meeting with Israeli PM Netanyahu to discuss the Iranian nuclear issue. She also meets Pres. Shimon Peres, and Israel’s National Security Adviser Yossi Cohen. Rice travels with a team that includes U.S. Under Secy. of State Wendy Sherman. Her trip is unrelated to the breakdown in Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. (HA 5/7)

Iranian technical experts and representatives of the P5+1 countries hold talks in New York City. An anonymous EU official describes them as “useful,” ahead of talks beginning 5/13 aimed at reaching a more comprehensive agreement. (AP, REU 5/7)

Unidentified Palestinians fire 1 Qassam rocket fr. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF enters 1 village nr. Jenin in the afternoon, searching a car repair shop and arresting 1 Palestinian. (Israel Army Radio 8/8; PCHR 8/9, 8/16; OCHA 8/18)

The Washington Post runs a special report on the tensions in Druze villages in the Golan Heights over the civil war in Syria, noting that deepening divisions between Asad loyalists and an increasing number of critics have occasionally erupted in violence. (WP 8/8)

The IDF makes a brief incursion into n. Gaza to level land and clear lines of sight along the border e. of Jabaliya town. In the West Bank, the IDF bulldozes Palestinian land in Azariyya (just outside Jerusalem) for construction of a “biblical garden”; patrols in 1 village nr. Jenin, firing tear gas and percussion grenades at stone-throwing youths who confront them; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Hebron. Palestinian, Israeli, and international activists hold a nonviolent march fr. Jericho toward Ramallah to highlight freedom of movement issues; the IDF blocks the march just outside Jericho and arrests 5 Palestinians. (PCHR 1/12; OCHA 1/13)

Briefing the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Comm., IDF chief of staff Gantz says the IDF is preparing for a massive influx of refugees into the Golan Heights if Syrian pres. Bashar al-Asad falls, which in the IDF’s assessment is “inevitable.” He says Israel would try to keep the refugees in a strategic buffer zone between the Golan and Syria, and would likely move Alawite refugees to the divided Alawite city of Ghajar straddling the Lebanon-Israel border to prevent any conflict between Alawis and the Druze population of the Golan. (NYT, WT 1/11)

Meanwhile, the Knesset passes an amendment to an existing law to discourage infiltrators that makes it legal to detain illegal migrants and their children for up to 3 yrs. without trial. Though directed at African migrant workers attempting to enter Israel fr. Egypt, Israeli rights groups fear the measure could be used to detain refugees fleeing violence in Syria. (NYT 1/11)

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)

As Israel continues widespread air and naval bombardment of Gaza for a 3d day, Israeli DM Barak declares “all-out war” on Hamas. The IDF declares a 2-mi. buffer zone around the Strip a closed military zone and continues amassing tanks and troops there, indicating further preparations for a ground invasion. Israeli military officials speaking anonymously say they have expanded the IDF’s target list to include Hamas’s support network and symbols of Hamas power, stating that “there are many aspects of Hamas, and we are trying to hit the whole spectrum, because everything is connected and everything supports terrorists against Israel” and that “anything affiliated with Hamas is a legitimate target.”

Israeli actions: The IDF reports hitting 100 sites today, including more Islamic University buildings (including the engineering dept., library); homes and offices of Hamas leaders; PA government buildings (including the Interior Min., Finance Min., Foreign Min., Labor Min., Construction and Housing Min., and a PA presidential guest house); Bani Suhayla’s municipal building; the alZawiyya Mosque in Jabaliya r.c. and Omar Bin al-Khattab Mosque in al-Bureij r.c.; more civil and naval police stations; more tunnels along the Rafah border; the headquarters of Hamas’s al-Aqsa TV; Gaza’s port (for a 2d day); and 1 Izzeddin al-Qassam Brigades training site. Target areas include Abasan, Bani Suhayla, Bayt Lahiya, al-Bureij r.c., Dayr al-Balah, Gaza City (city center, al-Rimal, al-Sabra, Shaykh Ajlin, Tal al-Hawa), Jabaliya town and r.c., Khan Yunis, Nussayrat r.c., al-Qarara, Rafah, Shati’ r.c., Tal al-Za‘atar. Just before strikes on Rafah, Israeli Military Intelligence makes 10,000 automated calls to Rafah residents warning of pending air strikes, breaks into Palestinian radio broadcasts to urge residents across Gaza to move to city centers. Palestinian medical officials report at least 364 Palestinians dead, 1,500 wounded since 12/27.

Palestinian actions: Palestinians fire 66 rockets, 14 mortars into Israel (twice as many as in the previous 24 hrs.), killing 3 Israeli civilians (1 each in Nahal Oz, Ashdod, Ashqelon; 1 of them an Israeli Palestinian) and wounding 5 (3 of them Israeli Palestinians), with 2 rockets hitting 23 mi. north in Gan Yavne/Ashdod. A Palestinian mortar hits an IDF base in Netivot, s. and e. of the Nahal Oz crossing, killing 1 IDF soldier (a Druze), seriously wounding 1, lightly injuring 4. The Israeli toll stands at 4–5 dead, about 20 injured. Reports circulate (e.g., NYT 12/30) of Hamas gunmen executing at least 5 accused collaborators with Israel inside hospitals; the 5 had been jailed for collaboration and transferred to hospitals after being wounded in IDF air strikes on jails.

Humanitarian notes: Israel allows 40 truckloads of humanitarian aid into Gaza; Egypt allows 23 truckloads of emergency goods in, some wounded out through Rafah. International aid groups (including Amnesty International, the UN) say aid transfers are insufficient, warn that the death toll is rising in part because of lack of medicines and medical supplies, food, and fuel.

Of note: One Israeli air strike heavily damages the UN Special Coordinator’s Office (UNSCO) headquarters in Gaza City, prompting the UN to issue a formal complaint. Egyptian TV reports that captured IDF Cpl. Gilad Shalit has been wounded in an Israeli air strike in recent days; Hamas does not comment. (BBC, CNN, HA, Houston Chronicle, IFM, REU, White House press briefing, YA 12/29; BBC, IDF, Independent, NYT, WP, WT 12/30; IDF, UNOSAT 12/31; JP, PCHR, WJW 1/1; ITV 1/2; IDF 1/3; NYT, WP 1/4; WT, UNOSAT 1/5; IFM 1/8; Committee to Protect Journalists 1/9)

In the West Bank, the IDF fires rubbercoated steel bullets, percussion grenades, tear gas at Palestinians demonstrating against OCL in Issawiyya, Shu‘fat r.c., al-Tur neighborhood in East Jerusalem, causing no serious injuries; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in East Tura village nr. Jenin, Hebron. (PCHR 1/1)

In the West Bank, the IDF makes an early-evening raid into Nablus, occupying several buildings in Ras al-‘Ayn neighborhood as observation posts, raiding an apartment building to capture 2 wanted AMB mbrs., wounding 1 wanted man and fatally shooting 1 Palestinian bystander in the process. The IDF also conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Tulkarm, in Ni‘lin (those arrested include 2 boys ages 11 and 14), and nr. Bethlehem, Hebron, Jenin, Tubas. Some 20 Jewish settlers fr. Yitzhar nr. Nablus throws stones at residents of ‘Asira al-Qibliyya, who throw stones back, prompting the IDF to fire in the air and at the legs of the Palestinians “to try to restore order”; no serious injuries are reported. Jewish settlers attack an IDF contingent that enters an unauthorized settlement outpost nr. Ramallah to confiscate construction equipment being used to expand the outpost; no serious injuries are reported; late in the evening, Jewish settlers from another nearby outpost enter an IDF base w. of Ramallah, damage the water supply. (PCHR 9/11; NYT 9/12; NYT 9/14; OCHA 9/17; PCHR 9/18; AIC 11/9)

E. of Beirut, Druze politician Shaykh Sali Aridi of the pro-Syrian Lebanese Democratic Party is assassinated by a bomb placed under his car. No group claims responsibility. (WP 9/11)

Gaza’s power plant shuts down completely for lack of fuel. A Palestinian teenager (brother of the teenager who died on 5/8) succumbs to injuries sustained during the IDF’s 5/7 raid on Abasan. In the West Bank, the IDF imposes a 1-day curfew on Azun nr. Qalqilya; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Jenin town and r.c., nr. Hebron. (WP 5/12; PCHR 5/15)

In Beirut, calm prevails but many roads remain closed and some Hizballah mbrs. continue to patrol streets. Hizballah and Jumblatt supporters exchange fire in the villages of Aley, Kayfun, and Shuwayfat s. of Beirut. Hizballah sends fighters convoys toward Druze leader Walid Jumblatt’s stronghold in the Chouf mountains, but they are ambushed en route by Druze militias fighters (some of whom had supported the opposition and stood with Hizballah until it moved deep into the Chouf, then switched sides to defend the Druze heartland), withdrawing with heavy casualties. (NYT, WP, WT 5/12; NYT 5/16; NYT, WP 5/18)

The IDF makes an air strike on an ESF post in Abasan in s. Gaza, killing 4 ESF officers; makes a 2d air strike on a suspected rocket-launching site in Jabaliya r.c., hitting a home, wounding 6 Palestinian civilians (ages 1, 3, 29, 30, 75, 82). Palestinians fire 2 rockets, 5 mortars fr. Gaza into Israel, causing damage but no injuries; the IDF shells the launching site, causing no reported injuries. Late in the evening, the IDF sends troops into Dayr al-Balah, conducting arrest raids and house searches, occupying a home as an observation post, leveling land to improve lines of site; launches a similar operation in al-Shuka (Palestinian militants fire on the troops, detonate a roadside bomb, causing no injuries). In the West Bank, the IDF bulldozes the farming community of Khirbat Qussa, located btwn. the separation wall and the Green Line nr. Hebron, demolishing the 15 homes, 12 cave dwellings, and 27 sheep pens comprising the village, evicting the 267 residents to the “Palestinian” side of the separation wall. The IDF also conducts arrest raids, house searches nr. Jenin, Nablus, Salfit; raids a number of stores and a bank in Ramallah. Jewish settlers fr. Brakha nr. Nablus prevent Palestinians fr. reaching their olive groves; the IDF intervenes, forcing the settlers to leave. The IDF also intervenes to prevent Jewish settlers fr. Elon Moreh nr. Nablus fr. blocking Palestinians access to their olive groves nearby. Inside Israel, some 100 Israeli police officers make an overnight raid on the Galilee Druze village of Pekiin to arrest men suspected of vandalizing a cell phone antenna, firing live ammunition at stonethrowing residents who protest the predawn incursion, wounding 10s. An AMB mbr. wounded by the IDF in Nablus on 10/16 dies. (NYT, OCHA, PAP, WP 10/31; PCHR, WT 11/1)

The IDF makes at least 4 air strikes on Gaza targeting Hamas, attempting to assassinate Hamas mbr. Muhammad Shatat as he drives in Gaza City (causing no injuries), hitting 2 suspected weapons caches and 2 money exchanges in Jabaliya r.c. (also destroying a Palestinian home) and Gaza City (wounding 7 Palestinians, including a pregnant woman, 2 children). Palestinians fire at least 3 rockets fr. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or injuries. In Jabaliya, 2 Abu Rish Brigades mbrs. (affiliated with Fatah) are injured when explosives they are handling detonate prematurely. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Bethlehem and Nablus, in Qalqilya, and nr. Hebron, Jenin, Ramallah, Salfit, Tulkarm. Meanwhile, Abbas, Hamas-affiliated PA PM Ismail Haniyeh meet in Gaza to discuss ways of calming intra-Palestinian violence. Abbas also meets with reps. of other factions to urge them to halt rocket fire into Israel. Unidentified gunmen fire on the home of a Fatah leader in Gaza City, wounding 1 Palestinian. A Palestinian dies of injuries received in an 5/18 IDF air strike on Gaza City that assassinated 2 Hamas mbrs. (IFM, NYT, PCHR, WP, WT 5/24; OCHA 5/30; PCHR 5/31)

With the cease-fire at Nahr al-Barid r.c. holding, the Lebanese army reinforces troops around the camp. Palestinian refugees continue to flee the r.c. during the day, most heading to nearby Biddawi r.c.; at most, half of the 40,000 residents remain. The UN warns the camp is still without water, electricity; food supplies are low. The PLO says it would not object to the Lebanese army entering the r.c. if necessary; raises the possibility of sending in fighters fr. Palestinian factions who know the layout of the r.c. to roust the FI mbrs. Palestinian leaders in the camp and local Islamist figures in Tripoli attempt to negotiate a FI surrender. Meanwhile, a bomb explodes in the Druze village of Aley nr. Beirut, wounding 16 Lebanese; no group claims responsibility. (AFP, DS, LBC, OCS 5/23 in WNC 5/24; NYT, WP, WT 5/24; WT 5/25)

The IDF continues operations al-Shuka, making air and artillery strikes on buildings allegedly housing Hamas and Islamic Jihad weapons caches, exchanging fire with Palestinian gunmen, conducting house-tohouse searches, prompting residents to flee, leaving 2 Palestinian civilians, 1 Palestinian militant dead, at least 1 Palestinian wounded. Late in the evening, the IDF expands operations deeper into Rafah, making air strikes on militant targets in heavily residential areas, killing 1 Islamic Jihad mbr., 2 other armed Palestinians, a Palestinian woman and her 2 children, wounding at least 3 Palestinians; also destroys the remaining parts of a PA security barracks. Also in Gaza, the IDF makes an air strike destroying a home in Shatti r.c. nr. Gaza City after warning residents to evacuate. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids in Tulkarm town; patrols in Tulkarm r.c.; conducts random ID checks in Hebron. The IDF also bars Palestinians under age 45 fr. attending Friday prayers at al-Aqsa Mosque. (NYT 8/4; WP 8/5; PCHR 8/10)

The IDF calls up more reservists (no details reported), moves additional artillery to the border with Lebanon; escalates air strikes on s. Beirut (killing at least 1 Lebanese soldier, wounding 2 soldiers, 4 civilians), hitting bridges and roads in Christian areas n. of the capital along the coast for the 1st time (killing a least 5 Lebanese civilians, wounding 19; hitting an 8-truck UN convoy, preventing the movement of other aid convoys south); also strikes targets in s. Lebanon (flattening 2 houses, leaving 50 Lebanese missing) as well as in Baalbek, Hermel, Qana (killing at least 28 farm workers, mostly Syrian Kurds) in the Biqa‘ Valley. Ground operations in s. Lebanon continue, with especially intense fighting in Aita al-Sha‘b, Markaba (where at least 3 IDF soldiers are killed and 1 tank is destroyed), Taybeh. Hizballah fires 195 rockets into n. Israel, hitting Buaineh, Carmiel, Hadera (50 mi. fr. the border, the deepest strike to date), Kiryat Shimona (hit by 60 missiles), Ma’alot, Migdal Hamek, Nahariya, Qunaytra, Safad, Shar Yishuv; killing 4 Israelis (including 3 Druze; 1 in Maghir, 2 in Majd al-Krum) wounding 8. (AP, NYT 8/4; NYT, WP, WT 8/5)

The IDF shoots, wounds 2 Palestinians nr. the evacuated Gush Katif settlement bloc; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and nr. Hebron. Israel deports 2 Palestinian prisoners who hold Jordanian passports to Jordan (see Quarterly Update in JPS 137). Inside Israel, some 70 ultra-Orthodox Jews attack, severely beat a Druze man harvesting his vineyard in Bayt Jan in the upper Galilee; 100s of Druze come to the scene and clash with the Jews, leaving 4 injured; Israeli police intervene, separate the groups. (IMEMC 9/1; HA 9/2; PCHR 9/8)

The IDF raids, searches a PA security office in Salfit; detains 60 officers for ID checks, claiming to look for wanted men; makes no arrests. A Jewish settler fr. Keddumim beats, chases away 2 Palestinian women (ages 45, 50) fr. a bus stop outside Nablus nr. the settlement. (PCHR 2/17)

In Mughar in the Galilee, Christians hold a protest against the Israeli police for failing to intervene in the 2/11 riots. Christians clash with Druze, leaving 10 people injured. (PR 2/16)

The IDF expels Palestinian families fr. 2 Palestinian homes in Hebron allegedly to protect Jewish settlers fr. Kiryat Arba who pass by the area. (PCHR 2/17)

In the Galilee village of Mughar, Druze residents demonstrate, loot Christian-owned stores, destroy several cars; Israeli police do not intervene. (PR 2/16)

The IDF conducts arrest raids in Bayt Furik, nr. Hebron; imposes a curfew on Hebron; fires on residential areas of Dayr al-Balah, Khan Yunis for the 2d night in a row; bulldozes 5 dunams of land in Bayt Hanun. 100s of Druze protest outside the PM’s office in Jerusalem against a government plan to unify local authorities, scuffle with police, leaving 14 police officers injured, 20 Druze under arrest. (HA 8/10; WT 8/11; HA 8/12; PCHR 8/14)

Hizballah directs antiaircraft at Israeli planes violating Lebanon’s airspace. Shrapnel fr. the missiles lands across the Israeli border in Shlomi, killing 1 Israeli boy, injuring 4. Israeli warplanes strike Hizballah targets in response. (HA 8/10; VOI, YA 8/10 in WNC 8/12; HA, MM, NYT, WP, WT 8/11; MM 8/12)

IDF undercover units raid Jenin, arresting local Islamic Jihad leader Abu Ali Kasi, 3 associates, killing 1 Palestinian bystander. The IDF also conducts arrest raids in Nablus (targeting the tanz im, PFLP), engaging in an exchange of gunfire that leaves 2 IDF soldiers, 1 Palestinian bystander wounded; demolishes a Palestinian home in Qalqilya; bulldozes 20 dunams of land in Khuza. Israeli police charge 4 Druze fr. n. Israel with conspiring to kidnap an IDF soldier. An Israeli court orders sealed the Shaykh Jarrah residences attacked by settlers on 4/27, leaving 48 Palestinians homeless. (HA, JTA 4/28; VOI 4/28 in WNC 4/29; LAW, PCHR 5/1)

The IDF makes a predawn raid on Nablus, killing 2 Palestinians (ages 16 and 60), occupying 2 schools and several buildings. In response to the IDF’s overnight attack on Gaza, Hamas fires 4 Qassam rockets at the Israeli border town of Sederot, seriously injuring 1 Israeli, damaging a factory. In Jenin, al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade (AMB) mbr. Shahar Zakarna is killed, 3 passengers are injured when an explosive device in his car detonates in what is believed to be an assassination. A Palestinian held in Israel’s Nafha prison in the Negev dies of “medical complications.” The IDF fires on residential areas of Abasan; demolishes 1 Palestinian home in Dayr al-Balah, 1 in Khan Yunis. Israeli police report the arrest of 2 Druze soldiers, 1 Druze civilian for stealing 3 machine guns fr. an army depot, selling them to Palestinian militants. (HA, LAW 2/19; LAW, NYT, PCHR, WP, WT 2/20; LAW 2/23; MM 2/24; PR 2/26; LAW, PCHR 2/27)

Israeli-Palestinian clashes continue, leaving 3 Palestinian dead, including a 9-yr.-old boy hit by IDF gunfire inside his home. A 4th Palestinian dies of injuries received earlier. The IDF tightens the closure on al-Bireh, Ramallah; shells residential areas of Brazil, Tulkarm. (HP 3/2; LAW, NYT, WP 3/3; LAW, WT 3/4)

Labor selects MK Benjamin Ben-Eliezer, a hawkish fmr. gen., to fill the post of DM in a unity government with Likud. MK Salah Tarif, a Druze, will become minister without portfolio, becoming the 1st non-Jewish cabinet mbr. in Israeli history. PM-elect Sharon is negotiating with smaller, right-wing parties to fill out the coalition. (NYT, WP, WT 3/3)

Bashar al-Asad is promoted to lt. gen., named cmdr. of the Syrian army, and unanimously nominated by the Ba'th party as its candidate for pres. Across Syria, masses of mourners hold public rallies, candlelight ceremonies to commemorate the late pres., praise Bashar. l00s of Druze, Arabs on the Golan Heights hold memorial rallies. (MENA 6/11, MENA, XIN 6/12 in WNC 6/13; MM, NYT, WP, WT 6/12; AYM, IRNA 6/12, ITAR-TASS 6/13 in WNC 6/14; CSM 6/13; MM 6/15; MEI 6/16)

The Knesset, including much of Barak's governing coalition, approves (60-53) a draft bill designed to block a Golan withdrawal by requiring a referendum on a peace agmt. with Syria win support of 61 of the 120 MKs and 62.5% of all eligible voters, whether or not they actually vote. Justice M Yossi Beilin denounces the bill as racist, because it would neutralize the votes of Israeli Arabs, who make up just over 10% of the electorate. The draft is sent to comm., is unlikely to become law soon. (MM 3/1; MM, NYT, WP 3/2; al-Quds 3/2 in WNC 3/6; JP, MEI 3/10)

Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Abdallah arrives in Damascus for a 2-day visit to discuss with Syrian pres. Hafiz al-Asad the peace process, convening an Arab summit. Rumors hint that Abdallah may deliver a message conveying guarantees from Washington, proposing a Clinton-Asad mtg. in Geneva. (MM 3/1, 3/3; NYT 3/4; MENA 3/4 in WNC 3/6)

In s. Lebanon, Hizballah attacks an SLA patrol, killing 5 SLA mbrs. 3 SLA mbrs. are injured in a separate Hizballah mortar attack. An exchange of shelling btwn. the 2 groups afterward kills a Druze cleric, injures 2 civilians. (MM 3/1; ANSA [Rome] 3/1 in WNC 3/2; NYT 3/2; JP, MEI 3/10)