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  • October 16, 2017

    In the West Bank, IDF troops assault and arrest a Palestinian during a patrol in ‘Azun village near Qalqilya. They also arrest 13 Palestinians during late-night raids near Bethlehem, Ramallah,...

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  • October 8, 2017

    Unidentified parties fire a rocket from Gaza toward Israel. It lands in an open area short of the border, causing no damage or injuries. An IDF tank shells and destroys a Hamas observation post...

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  • May 3, 2017

    Israeli forces arrest a Palestinian at a checkpoint in Shu‘fat r.c. after he allegedly attempts to stab 1 of them, causing no injuries. In the West Bank, 3 Israeli settlers go missing in the...

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  • April 24, 2017

    IDF troops arrest a Palestinian at Qalandia checkpoint after she allegedly stabs and injures 1 of them. Elsewhere in the West Bank, they arrest 7 Palestinians and issue 2 arrest summons during...

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  • December 19, 2016

    Along Gaza’s border, IDF troops and tanks open fire on a Hamas military site nr. al-Bureij r.c., causing no reported damage or injuries. The IDF says that the attack was ordered in response to...

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  • October 1, 2016

    Across Israel, Palestinian citizens gather to commemorate the 16th anniversary of the killing of 13 Palestinians by Israeli forces in 10/2000. Around 2,000 people, including several Joint List MKs...

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  • July 27, 2016

    Overnight in the West Bank, IDF troops assault the Hebron-area home of a Palestinian, allegedly a mbr. of PIJ involved in the killing of an Israeli on 7/1. After declaring the village a closed...

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  • July 11, 2016

    As its closure of Hebron and its surrounding district continues, the IDF conducts raids in and around the city, arresting 6 Palestinians, destroying some property, and sparking clashes in both...

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  • June 29, 2016

    In an unusual incident in Ramallah, 9 Israelis try to visit a Palestinian’s home for a fastbreaking meal, but stone-throwing Palestinian youths block them and set their vehicle on fire. PASF and...

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  • June 2, 2016

    In the 2d attack this week, IDF troops shoot and kill a Palestinian at a checkpoint nr. Tulkarm after she allegedly attempts to stab an Israeli soldier. No Israelis are injured. Meanwhile, around...

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  • March 15, 2016

    An unidentified assailant allegedly attempts to stab an Israeli soldier in Tel Aviv. He then flees the area. In the West Bank, IDF troops arrest a Palestinian youth at a checkpoint nr. Nablus on...

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  • February 8, 2016

    In Gaza, a Palestinian worker dies in a tunnel leading to Egypt in unclear circumstances. Residents of the area say he was repairing a section of the tunnel that had been damaged by Egyptian...

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  • January 20, 2016

    For a 2d day in a row, IDF troops stationed along Gaza’s border shoot and injure a Palestinian e. of Gaza City. Israeli forces conduct a limited incursion across the border fence to level land nr...

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  • December 28, 2014

    In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops violently disperse 2 separate groups of Palestinian protesters, injuring 3 with live ammunition nr. the Erez border crossing and 4 nr. Shuja‘iya. Separately, Israeli...

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  • October 1, 2014

    In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops conduct a limited incursion to level land close to the border fence nr. Khan Yunis. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in al-‘Arub r.c...

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  • September 7, 2014

    In East Jerusalem, a 16-year-old Palestinian dies of wounds sustained during clashes on 8/31. In the immediate aftermath of his death, the IDF says that his injuries were incurred when he was hit...

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  • January 22, 2014

    In the Gaza Strip, an Israeli air strike kills 2 Palestinians in Bayt Hanun, a mbr. of Islamic Jihad and the other a mbr. of the PFLP. Meanwhile, Israeli forces open fire on farmland nr. Dayr al-...

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  • January 21, 2014

    In the Gaza Strip, Palestinians fire 3 shells into s. Israel, causing no damage or injuries. Separately, Palestinians detonate a small bomb on the border with Israel, causing no injuries. In the...

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  • January 10, 2014

    In the West Bank, Israeli soldiers shoot and injure 4 Palestinians with live ammunition during clashes in Jalazun r.c. nr. Ramallah. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in Nablus and...

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  • December 2, 2013

    Off the n. coast of the Gaza Strip, Israeli naval vessels open fire on Palestinian fishermen, causing no casualties or damage to the boats. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and...

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  • November 25, 2013

    In the West Bank, IDF troops uproot around 60 olive trees in Tuqu‘ village nr. Bethlehem, while separately, Jewish settlers nr. Nablus attack a house in Burin village, throwing stones and a...

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  • November 12, 2013

    In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops open fire on Palestinian fishermen nr. Khan Yunis, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 1 village and al-Fawar and al- ‘Arub r.c. nr....

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  • September 23, 2013

    In the West Bank, IDF troops open fire with rubber-coated bullets and stun grenades on stone-throwing Palestinians in Hebron. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 1 village each nr...

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  • September 2, 2013

    In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops open fire on Palestinian fishermen nr. Bayt Lahiya, causing no damage or injuries. Two explosions target an IDF patrol operating adjacent to the Gaza border nr. Qarni...

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  • June 9, 2013

    In the Gaza Strip, Israeli authorities partially open the Kerem Shalom crossing to allow entry of 220 truckloads of goods for the commercial, agricultural, and aid sectors. Cooking gas is also...

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  • February 12, 2013

    Australian television channel ABC broadcasts claims that dual IsraeliAustralian citizen Ben Zygier committed suicide in a high-security Israeli jail in 2010 after being held for months in great...

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  • February 11, 2013

    U.S. State Dept. spokesperson Victoria Nuland says that Secy. of State John Kerry, appointed on 2/1, is working to try to free up almost $700 m. in aid for the PA held up in Congress. Separate...

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  • January 23, 2013

    White House spokesperson Jay Carney responds to a question about the consequences of the Israeli election for peace efforts by restating the administration’s call for a resumption of direct...

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  • January 16, 2013

    The Israeli government issues tenders for 198 new settlement homes in Hebron and Efrata (Gush Etzion bloc). Meanwhile, the Jerusalem municipality approves the planned relocation of the National...

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  • January 13, 2013

    Israeli newspaper Yedi’ot Aharonot reports that the EU is preparing a new plan for Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, to be presented following the forthcoming Israeli elections. The plan reportedly...

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In the West Bank, IDF troops assault and arrest a Palestinian during a patrol in ‘Azun village near Qalqilya. They also arrest 13 Palestinians during late-night raids near Bethlehem, Ramallah, Hebron, Jenin, and Nablus, and patrol near Hebron. Palestinian youths throw stones at an IDF patrol outside a settlement near Hebron, sparking minor clashes; 1 Palestinian is arrested. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces clash with Palestinians in Qalandia refugee camp and Issawiyya; there are no serious injuries. They also arrest a Palestinian during a late-night raid in the Old City. Along Gaza’s border, Israeli forces conduct a limited incursion to level land near Bayt Lahiya. Off Gaza’s coast late at night, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats near Jabaliya refugee camp, causing no damage or injuries. (MNA, WAFA 10/16; PCHR 10/19)

After days of positivity from both Hamas and the PA in the wake of the 10/12 reconciliation deal, a Hamas spokesperson criticizes the PA for not prioritizing the rollback of sanctions on Gaza. “It is not justified to continue the sanctions on Gaza, while the [PA] government is content with talking about getting control of border crossings and exploration for [natural] gas in Gaza,” he writes, on Twitter. His comments come after the Fatah Central Committee neglected to discuss the sanctions at a meeting on 10/15. Meanwhile, the PA’s director of border crossings, Nazmi Muhanna, arrives in Gaza. He says he is there to “to carry out the first article of the reconciliation agreement signed in Cairo [on 10/12] regarding taking over the crossings.” (TOI 10/16; MNA, TOI 10/17)

The Israeli NGO Peace Now reports that the Licensing Subcommittee of Israel’s Civil Administration has approved 31 building permits for new housing units in central Hebron, marking the first approval of new settlement construction in Hebron in 15 years. (AP, PCN, REU, TOI, YA 10/16; TOI 10/17)

A Syrian antiaircraft battery positioned east of Damascus fires on Israeli fighter jets allegedly flying in Lebanese air space, causing no damage or injuries. In response, the IAF launches an air strike on the battery. (HA, JP, NYT, TOI, YA 10/16)

Unidentified parties fire a rocket from Gaza toward Israel. It lands in an open area short of the border, causing no damage or injuries. An IDF tank shells and destroys a Hamas observation post east of al-Maghazi refugee camp. Israeli artillery also target a site east of Gaza City, causing a fire to break out; there is no major damage or injuries. Separately, IDF troops stationed along the border fence arrest 2 Palestinians attempting to cross from Gaza into Israel near Rafah, and open fire on Palestinian lands near al-Bureij refugee camp, causing no damage. In East Jerusalem, approximately 524 Israeli settlers tour Haram al-Sharif in the morning, commemorating the Jewish holiday Sukkot. Some of the settlers reportedly pray at the sanctuary. In the West Bank, the Israeli authorities shut down al-Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron to Muslim worshippers to make way for Sukkot-related activities at the site. IDF troops arrest 16 Palestinians and issue 1 arrest summons during late-night raids in and around Hebron, Jerusalem, Qalqilya, Bethlehem, Nablus, Salfit, and Jenin, and patrol near Tulkarm and Hebron. In Israel, approximately 30,000 Palestinians and Israelis gather in Jerusalem to call for a resumption of IsraeliPalestinian peace talks. The Israeli NGO Women Wage Peace organized the demonstration. Hamas denounces the PLO for supporting the rally, accusing it of “normalizing” relations with Israel. (HA, MNA, TOI, WAFA 10/8; MNA, TOI, WAFA 10/9; PCHR 10/12)

Israeli forces arrest a Palestinian at a checkpoint in Shu‘fat r.c. after he allegedly attempts to stab 1 of them, causing no injuries. In the West Bank, 3 Israeli settlers go missing in the Hebron region. The IDF then shuts down checkpoints and conducts raids across the region, including in al-‘Arub r.c. nr. Hebron, where they spark minor clashes; 2 Palestinians are injured. Meanwhile, further IDF raids nr. Qalqilya spark clashes with stone-throwing Palestinians; there are no serious injuries. The IDF arrests 8 Palestinians during late-night raids nr. Tulkarm, Ramallah, Hebron, Nablus, and Bethlehem; and patrols nr. Nablus and Hebron throughout the day. An Israeli settler driver rams a Palestinian child in Yatta village nr. Hebron, moderately injuring him. Off Gaza’s coast, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats nr. Gaza City, causing no injuries or damage. In Gaza, Hamas forces arrest several local Fatah leaders across the region and issue arrest summons to a number of others. The arrests come hours ahead of a Fatah-planned march in solidarity with the 1,500-some Palestinians on hunger strike. (MNA, TOI, WAFA 5/3; PCHR 5/4; PCHR 5/11)

PA pres. Abbas meets with U.S. pres. Trump at the White House in Washington. They commit to a new Israeli-Palestinian peace effort, and Abbas reaffirms the Palestinian preference for a 2-state solution based on the pre-1967 armistice lines. Trump says he is ready to do “whatever is necessary” to achieve peace, but that the U.S. can only serve as “mediator, arbitrator, and facilitator” because any agreement would have to be directly negotiated between the 2 parties. (HA, JP, NYT, POL, TOI, WAFA, WHPO, WP 5/3; HA, WAFA 5/4)

Following a petition to the High Court of Justice from the Israeli NGO Adalah, the IPS announces that it will allow the 1,500-plus hunger-striking Palestinian prisoners observing the Dignity Strike since 4/17 to meet with their lawyers. The announcement comes absent a High Court ruling, but after a hearing at the court, in which the justices appeared to support Adalah’s position. Previously, lawyers were only given access to prisoners at Ofer and Ashqelon Prisons. (HA, JP, WAFA 5/3; MNA 5/5)

The Israeli authorities announce the temporary expansion of the fishing zone off Gaza’s s. coast, from 6 to 9 naut. mi. They do not offer an end date. (MNA, TOI 5/3)

IDF troops arrest a Palestinian at Qalandia checkpoint after she allegedly stabs and injures 1 of them. Elsewhere in the West Bank, they arrest 7 Palestinians and issue 2 arrest summons during raids nr. Ramallah, Bethlehem, and Nablus; and patrol nr. Hebron and Qalqilya. Israeli settlers raze a small plot of Palestinian agricultural land outside al-Khadir village nr. Bethlehem. In Gaza, 2 Palestinians are injured in an accidental explosion at a Hamas military site. (HA, MNA, TOI, WAFA 4/24; TOI 4/26; PCHR 4/27)

The Jerusalem Municipality files for public review of a plan to confiscate 1,300 m2 nr. Haram al-Sharif to build a visitor center. The Israeli NGO Peace Now will report on the plan on 4/25, saying that “dragged by settler organizations, the Israeli govt. is willing to go out of its way to approve this sensitive plan through a highly unusual procedure.” (MNA 4/25; PCN 4/25)

Along Gaza’s border, IDF troops and tanks open fire on a Hamas military site nr. al-Bureij r.c., causing no reported damage or injuries. The IDF says that the attack was ordered in response to shots fired at IDF patrols in the area earlier in the day. In the West Bank, IDF troops arrest a Palestinian youth after she allegedly attempts to stab them nr. Qalqilya. They also arrest 4 Palestinians and issue 3 arrest summons during raids nr. Bethlehem, Nablus, Ramallah and Hebron, and patrol nr. Salfit, Ramallah, and Hebron. Armed gunmen shoot and injure an Israeli settler nr. Nablus. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces demolish a Palestinian car dealership in Sheikh Jarrah and arrest 2 Palestinians during raids in Silwan. (HA, JP, MNA, WAFA, YA 12/19; MNA 12/20; PCHR 12/22)

The Israeli NGO Yesh Din files a motion with the Custodian of Absentee Property stating that the current relocation plan for the Amona settlement outpost, which the outpost’s residents approved on 12/18, is illegal because a section of the proposed relocation site, dubbed Plot 38, is privately owned by Palestinians. (MNA 12/19; HA, JP, MNA 12/20)

The Egyptian authorities open the Rafah border crossing for passage in both directions for the 3d of 3 planned days. (MNA 12/19)

Across Israel, Palestinian citizens gather to commemorate the 16th anniversary of the killing of 13 Palestinians by Israeli forces in 10/2000. Around 2,000 people, including several Joint List MKs, march through Sakhnin to mark the occasion. In the West Bank, IDF troops arrest 5 Palestinians and issue 1 arrest summons during raids and house searches nr. Bethlehem, Qalqilya, and Salfit; and patrol during the day nr. Nablus and Hebron. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces arrest 18 Palestinians during late-night raids in the Old City, al-Tur, and Silwan. (HA, MNA, WAFA 10/1; PCHR 10/6)

The Israeli authorities announce that the IDF will be imposing a general closure of the West Bank and a temporary moratorium on passage to and from Gaza between midnight on 10/2 and midnight on 10/4 during the upcoming Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashanah. Only medical and humanitarian exceptions will be allowed. (HA, JP, MNA 10/2)

The Israeli NGO Peace Now reports that the Israeli Civil Admin. has advanced plans to build a new settlement outpost nr. Nablus, likely with the intention of housing the 40-odd families from the condemned Amona outpost. The plan for the new settlement includes 98 housing units, with an option to increase the number of units to 300. Peace Now also reports that plans for a new industrial zone nr. Ramallah were also advanced. (JP, MNA, PCN 10/2)

Overnight in the West Bank, IDF troops assault the Hebron-area home of a Palestinian, allegedly a mbr. of PIJ involved in the killing of an Israeli on 7/1. After declaring the village a closed military zone, they cut the Internet and electricity, fire anti-tank missiles and other artillery at his 3-story residential building for 7 hours, and eventually demolish it, killing the man and injuring a 2d Palestinian. The operation sparks clashes with stone-throwing Palestinians in the area; 5 Palestinians are injured and 3 are arrested. (BBC, MNA, WAFA 7/27; PCHR 8/4)

After the major IDF operation nr. Hebron overnight, the PA announces that the IDF has agreed to begin lifting its general closure of Hebron and the surrounding district, which it put in place in the wake of a Palestinian’s shooting of a settler on 7/1. Tension remains high in Hebron, as the IDF patrols the region throughout the day. (JP 7/27)

Elsewhere in the West Bank, IDF troops arrest 11 Palestinians during late-night raids in Nablus and nr. Bethlehem. In East Jerusalem, Israeli police arrest 2 mbrs. of the Islamic Waqf after they allegedly assault 2 Israeli archaeologists at Haram al-Sharif, and arrest 2 Palestinians during raids in Silwan. Off Gaza’s coast, Israeli naval forces confront a Palestinian fishing party late at night, damaging 1 boat and arresting 5 Palestinians. Meanwhile, a Gazan succumbs to injuries sustained in a confrontation with Israeli forces on 11/23/2001. In Israel, Israeli forces demolish several structures in the bedouin village of al-Araqib for the 101st time since 6/2010. The demolitions spark minor clashes, and several Palestinians are arrested. (HA, JP, MNA, TOI, WAFA, YA 7/27; EI, MNA, PCHR, WAFA 7/28; PCHR 8/4)

Israeli NGO Peace Now announces that the Israeli govt. has opened tenders for the construction of 323 housing units in Israeli settlements nr. Jerusalem, including 89 in Gilo, 36 in Neve Ya’acov, 68 in Pisgat Ze’ev, and 130 in Har Homa. Meanwhile, the Israeli Knesset’s Ministerial Comm. for Legislation gives preliminary approval to a bill that would make some West Bank settlements eligible for special tax breaks in connection with the severity of their security situation. (MNA, PNOW 7/27; HA, TOI 7/28)

As its closure of Hebron and its surrounding district continues, the IDF conducts raids in and around the city, arresting 6 Palestinians, destroying some property, and sparking clashes in both Dura and Sa‘ir (2 Palestinians are injured). IDF troops arrest 11 Palestinians during further raids and house searches in Qalqilya, and nr. Bethlehem and Jenin; and patrol during the day nr. Jenin, Ramallah, and Qalqilya. Israeli forces also raze a swath of Palestinian land nr. Ramallah. Along Gaza’s border, Israeli forces conduct a limited incursion to level land nr. Khan Yunis and open fire on Palestinian farmers nr. Bayt Hanun late at night, causing 1 minor injury. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces assault and arrest 2 Palestinians in Silwan and arrest 3 Palestinians during raids and patrols nr. the Old City and in Kafr ‘Aqab. (MNA, WAFA 7/11; PCHR 7/14)

Israel’s Knesset passes the so-called NGO bill into law, 57–48, following a 6-hour debate in which opponents of the bill cited numerous international reports criticizing the bill’s chilling effect on freedoms of speech. Inter alia, the law requires NGOs receiving more than 50% of their budget from public foreign entities to reveal the sources of their funding in all communications with public officials, on TV, newspapers, billboards, and online. (AP, HA 7/11; MNA, REU, TOI, YA 7/12)

In an unusual incident in Ramallah, 9 Israelis try to visit a Palestinian’s home for a fastbreaking meal, but stone-throwing Palestinian youths block them and set their vehicle on fire. PASF and IDF troops secure the group’s departure from the oPt. Meanwhile, the IDF arrests 3 Palestinians during late-night raids nr. Bethlehem and Tulkarm and patrols nr. Hebron and Ramallah throughout the day. Israeli forces deliver stop-work orders to 2 residential buildings under construction and demolition notices to 4 structures nr. Hebron. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces arrest 15 Palestinians during late-night raids in Ras al-Amud, Silwan, Qalandia r.c., and Wadi al-Juz. In Israel, Israeli forces demolish the bedouin village of al-Araqib for the 100th time in 6 years. (MNA, TOI 6/29; JP, PCHR 6/30; PCHR 7/14)

The Egyptian authorities open the Rafah border crossing for the 1st of 5 planned days over the course of the next week. (OCHA 7/5)

Israel’s security cabinet approves the reconciliation deal with Turkey announced officially on 6/27. Only 3 ministers vote against it: DM Lieberman, Education Minister Naftali Bennett, and Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked. During a debate over the deal in the Knesset, MK Haneen Zoabi (Joint List) calls the IDF soldiers who raided the Mavi Marmara in 5/2010 “murderers,” sparking a heated confrontation with several right-wing MKs. Later, PM Netanyahu pledges to expel Zoabi from the Knesset. (HA, JP, YA 6/29).

Following pressure from the Israeli NGO Adalah, Israeli police make public portions of their new rules of engagement, approved by Israel’s atty.-gen. in 9/2015 amid the surge of violence. The new rules authorize the police to respond to stone- or firecracker-throwing with live fire. (JP 7/4; HA 7/5)

In the 2d attack this week, IDF troops shoot and kill a Palestinian at a checkpoint nr. Tulkarm after she allegedly attempts to stab an Israeli soldier. No Israelis are injured. Meanwhile, around 4,000 Jewish settlers pray at Joseph’s Tomb nr. Nablus, sparking clashes between their IDF escort and stone-throwing Palestinian residents; 10 Palestinians are injured (1 will succumb to his injuries on 6/6). Meanwhile, IDF troops conduct raids and house searches in Silwad and Kafr Malik villages nr. Ramallah, issuing 2 Palestinians arrest summons and sparking minor clashes in which a Palestinian is mildly injured. IDF troops patrol nr. Hebron throughout the day. Off Gaza’s coast, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats, causing no injuries or damage. Along Gaza’s border, Israeli forces conduct a limited incursion to level land nr. al-Bureij r.c. For the 2d day in a row, the Egyptian authorities open the Rafah border crossing to traffic in both directions. (EI, HA, JP, MNA, WAFA 6/2; MNA 6/3; OCHA, PCHR 6/9)

Israel’s Justice Ministry releases a list of 27 nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) that might be affected by the so-called NGO Transparency Bill, which is currently under discussion in the Knesset. Twenty-five of the 27 NGOs are distinctly left-wing human rights groups, including B’Tselem and Yesh Din. This lends credence to accusations that the Transparency Bill is simply an attempt to silence opponents of the right-wing govt. (HA 6/3)

French FM Jean-Marc Ayrault announces 2 main goals for the international peace summit in Paris on 6/3: the parties agree to meet again by the end of 2016, with Israeli and Palestinian participation, and they agree to form several working groups to facilitate resolutions on various final status issues, such as Israeli security and economic incentives for both sides. (JP, TOI 6/2)

An unidentified assailant allegedly attempts to stab an Israeli soldier in Tel Aviv. He then flees the area. In the West Bank, IDF troops arrest a Palestinian youth at a checkpoint nr. Nablus on suspicion that she was planning to carry out an attack, and fire tear gas canisters at Palestinian students in a village nr. Bethlehem, causing a number of injuries. Late at night, they conduct a raid on an alleged weapons manufacturing workshop in a village nr. Bethlehem, arresting 3 Palestinians and confiscating a number of weapons. They conduct further raids nr. Tulkarm, Hebron, and Nablus, arresting 3 Palestinians and issuing arrest summons to 2; patrol in 5 villages nr. Hebron. Israeli forces demolish a motorcycle repair shop outside Qalandia r.c. Meanwhile, a Palestinian succumbs to injuries sustained in clashes with the IDF on 2/29. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces demolish 4 stores in Bayt Hanina. Along Gaza’s border, Israeli forces conduct a limited incursion to level land nr. Khan Yunis. (HA, MNA, WAFA, YA 3/15; MNA 3/16; PCHR 3/17)

Israeli nongovernmental organization Peace Now reports that the Israeli govt. has reinstated its policy of confiscating large swaths of Palestinian land, specifying that the Israeli govt. declared 2,342 dunams (580 acres) nr. Jericho “state land” on 3/10. After the report, both the UN secy.-gen. and the U.S. State Dept. criticize the Israeli govt.’s settlement expansion policy. (MNA, PCN, REU, TOI 3/15; REU, WAFA 3/16; EI 3/30)

In Gaza, a Palestinian worker dies in a tunnel leading to Egypt in unclear circumstances. Residents of the area say he was repairing a section of the tunnel that had been damaged by Egyptian forces when it collapsed. In Israel, an unidentified assailant stabs and injures an Israeli Jewish youth in Ramla, then flees the scene. The Israeli police later arrest a Palestinian in connection with the attack. In the West Bank, Israeli forces issue 11 stop-work notices to homes and agricultural structures under construction nr. Salfit and Hebron. IDF troops conduct house searches and raids in Qalqilya, Tulkarm and 1 nearby village, Hebron and 1 nearby village, 2 villages nr. Ramallah, and 1 each nr. Tubas and Bethlehem, arresting 17 Palestinians; patrol in 5 villages nr. Hebron and 4 nr. Ramallah. (HA, MNA, TOI, YA 2/8; PCHR 2/11)

On the 2d day of Palestinian national reconciliation talks in Doha, Hamas and Fatah officials reach a tentative agreement. They pledge to form a new unity govt., prepare for a new round of presidential and parliamentary elections, and reaffirm their commitments to previous agreements. They also agree that PASF troops will take control of the Rafah border crossing in Gaza, with Hamas staff supporting them. (TOI 2/9)

The Israeli Knesset’s Ethics Comm. suspends MKs Haneen Zoabi, Basel Ghattas, and Jamal Zahalka (Joint List) from plenary sessions and comm. hearings for periods of 2 and 4 mos. in connection with their 2/2 solidarity visit to the family of a Palestinian whose body is being withheld by Israeli authorities. (HA, JP, MNA, TOI 2/8; NYT 2/9; EI 2/10)

The Knesset passes, 50–43, the 1st reading of Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked’s “NGO transparency bill,” which would require Israeli nonprofit organizations that receive funding from foreign govts. to disclose that information in a variety of ways. (JP 2/8; HA, MNA 2/9)

For a 2d day in a row, IDF troops stationed along Gaza’s border shoot and injure a Palestinian e. of Gaza City. Israeli forces conduct a limited incursion across the border fence to level land nr. Khan Yunis. In the West Bank, IDF troops arrest a Palestinian at a junction nr. Hebron after he is found to be carrying a knife. IDF troops conduct a raid in a village nr. Nablus late at night, arresting 1 Palestinian and sparking clashes with stonethrowers in which 2 Palestinians are injured. They conduct further late-night raids and house searches in Jalazun r.c. and 5 villages nr. Ramallah, as well as s. of Hebron, arresting 8 Palestinians, including an activist with the leftwing Israeli NGO B’Tselem. Israeli forces demolish a home and a cement wall in a village nr. Hebron. Palestinian workers are barred from entering Israeli settlements for the 2d and final day, pursuant to the IDF’s 1/18 decision. (MNA, MDW, TOI, WAFA 1/20; PCHR 1/21; HA 1/22; PHCR 1/28)

In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops violently disperse 2 separate groups of Palestinian protesters, injuring 3 with live ammunition nr. the Erez border crossing and 4 nr. Shuja‘iya. Separately, Israeli soldiers fire live ammunition at Palestinian farmers approaching the border fence nr. Khan Yunis, causing no injuries. Meanwhile, the Gaza power plant shuts down, having exhausted its fuel reserves. Scheduled power outages increase from 12 to 18 hours a day, on average, with all electricity consumed having been purchased from Israel and Egypt. Meanwhile, Hamas prevents 37 children orphaned during OPE from attending a 1-week publicity tour to Israel and the West Bank sponsored by an Israeli nongovernmental organization, saying that the trip’s goal was normalization. In the West Bank, an 8-year-old Palestinian from Nabi Salih is moderately injured when a leftover Israeli sound bomb explodes in his hand. IDF troops raid a school in a village s. of Bethlehem. Later, Israeli forces raze agricultural land in a village s. of Nablus, then set up earth mounds in the area in preparation for military exercises. The IDF also conducts house searches and arrest raids nr. Nablus, Jenin, and Ramallah, as well as Askar r.c. and Jenin r.c.; patrols nr. Tulkarm, Hebron, Jenin, and Jericho. An Israeli settler hits a 7-year-old Palestinian boy with his car, moderately injuring him, before fleeing the area s. of Hebron. PA security forces conduct a late-night raid n. of Ramallah and arrest 1 Palestinian journalist. (MNA, NYT, WAFA 12/28; EI, MNA 12/29; YA 12/30; PCHR 12/31; OCHA 1/2)

Senior Hamas official Abu Marzuq criticizes the Palestinian leadership for amending the proposed UNSC res. without consulting Hamas. Meanwhile, U.S. Secy. of State Kerry calls PA Pres. Abbas and asks him to delay the submission of the amended res. until after the Israeli elections on 3/17/2015. (MNA, TOI 12/28; HA, TOI 12/29; ALM 12/30)

In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops conduct a limited incursion to level land close to the border fence nr. Khan Yunis. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in al-‘Arub r.c. nr. Hebron. (PCHR 10/2)

Israeli nongovernmental organization Peace Now reports that the Jerusalem municipality is going ahead with the proposed construction of 2,610 new settler homes in Givat Hamatos, a settlement in East Jerusalem. Tenders can now be published for the project, soliciting construction of the units. The U.S. is “deeply concerned” with the news and the announcement overshadows a meeting in the White House between Pres. Obama and Israeli PM Netanyahu. (AFP, WP 10/1)

In East Jerusalem, a 16-year-old Palestinian dies of wounds sustained during clashes on 8/31. In the immediate aftermath of his death, the IDF says that his injuries were incurred when he was hit in the leg with a sponge-tipped bullet and then fell, hitting his head on the ground, while the youth’s family says that he was shot in the head at close range. (A Palestinian autopsy will contradict the IDF and corroborate the family’s story on 9/14.) In response to his death, Palestinians protest in several neighborhoods, including Wadi al-Juz, where Israeli police respond to stone-throwing with rubber-coated metal bullets. In the French Hill settlement, Palestinian demonstrators throw Molotov cocktails at a gas station, causing damage. Off the coast of the Gaza Strip, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats in 2 separate incidents, causing no injuries or damage. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 4 villages nr. Ramallah, 2 villages nr. Salfit, and 1 village each nr. Hebron and Jenin. (HA, JP 9/7; PCHR 9/11; JP 9/15)

PA PM Rami Hamdallah says that the “govt. and the banks operating in the Palestinian territories were warned that if they make payments to former Hamas govt. employees in Gaza then the govt. and the people will be boycotted.” Separately, PA Pres. Abbas tells Palestinian media that “we will not accept the situation with Hamas continuing as it is at the moment.” Meanwhile, PA Dep. PM Muhammad Mustafa says that the PA is “looking for a temporary solution” to the problem of salaries for Hamas-appointed civil servants in the Gaza Strip, like sending money “through nongovernmental organizations such as the UN or any other entity.” He adds, “We want to avoid any legal confrontation with the U.S. whose law prohibits channelling money to Hamas because it’s blacklisted as a terrorist organization.” (AFP, MNA, WAFA 9/7)

In the Gaza Strip, an Israeli air strike kills 2 Palestinians in Bayt Hanun, a mbr. of Islamic Jihad and the other a mbr. of the PFLP. Meanwhile, Israeli forces open fire on farmland nr. Dayr al-Balah, causing no injuries, and separately, open fire on lands nr. Khan Yunis, causing no injuries. In the West Bank, IDF troops fire tear gas and rubber-coated metal bullets at Palestinians in Bayt Furik nr. Nablus, wounding 1, as residents try to repel Jewish settlers. The IDF patrols in 1 village nr. Hebron at night. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces raid the Abu Dis campus of al-Quds University, firing tear gas and rubber-coated metal bullets after students clash with a group of soldiers checking IDs at the entrance. (JP, MNA 1/22; PCHR 1/23)

Israeli NGO Peace Now announces that Israel has approved 261 new housing units in 2 West Bank settlements, Nofei Prat nr. Jericho and Ariel, in the n. It is the 5th such move in the last 2 weeks. (AFP 1/22)

The opposing sides of Syria’s civil war meet in Montreux, Switzerland, as a long-awaited UN peace conference gets underway. The 1st day’s agenda is occupied by formal speeches; Syrian FM Muallem and opposition leader Jarba both issue strident denunciations of their opponents. U.S. Secy. of State Kerry calls the rough start to the talks “a tough and complicated process.” Meanwhile, a shell fired from inside Syria strikes a home in n. Lebanon, wounding 1. (AFP, AP, DS, REU 1/22)

In the Gaza Strip, Palestinians fire 3 shells into s. Israel, causing no damage or injuries. Separately, Palestinians detonate a small bomb on the border with Israel, causing no injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF shoots and wounds 1 Palestinian with a rubber-coated metal bullet during clashes in Aida r.c. nr. Bethlehem. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 1 village nr. Ramallah in the morning, in 1 village nr. Ramallah in the afternoon, and in Nablus and 3 villages nearby and 1 village nr. Hebron at night; patrols in 1 village nr. Hebron in the afternoon, and in 3 villages nr. Hebron at night. Jewish settlers vandalize 8 Palestinian vehicles nr. Nablus, and leave “price-tag” graffiti. (MNA, WAFA 1/21; JP 1/22; PCHR 1/23)

Israel announces plans for 381 housing units in West Bank settlement Givat Ze’ev nr. Ramallah. Israeli NGO Peace Now also reports that building plans were advanced by the Jerusalem municipality for a new settler-run visitor center in Silwan. (AFP, JP 1/21)

A car bomb kills 4 people and wounds more than 30 in Beirut, striking in a Hizballah-dominated neighborhood of the city. The attack is claimed by Jabhat al-Nusra in Lebanon, assumed to be connected to the Syriabased al-Qa‘ida-linked group. (AFP, AP 1/21)

In the West Bank, Israeli soldiers shoot and injure 4 Palestinians with live ammunition during clashes in Jalazun r.c. nr. Ramallah. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in Nablus and nearby Balata r.c. in the afternoon, and in 2 villages nr. Ramallah, Qalqilya and 1 nearby village, and 1 village nr. Hebron at night; patrols in Hebron and 1 nearby village, and Qalqilya in the afternoon. IDF troops violently disperse Palestinian, Israeli, and international protesters at weekly demonstrations against Israel’s separation wall, settlements and occupation in 3 villages nr. Ramallah (Bil‘in, Nabi Salih, and Ni‘lin), 1 village nr. Qalqilya (Kafr Qaddum), and 1 village nr. Bethlehem (al-Ma‘sara). There are no serious injuries, except in Bil‘in (3 wounded by bullets, 1 wounded by a tear gas canister), Ni‘lin (1 wounded by a bullet), Nabi Salih (2 wounded by bullets) and Kafr Qaddum (3 struck by tear gas canisters). (AFP, MNA 1/10; PCHR 1/16)

Israel publishes tenders for 1,400 new homes in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, and also reissues tenders for 582 units in East Jerusalem that had failed to attract bids from contractors. According to NGO Peace Now, today’s announcement means that Israel has announced 5,349 new homes since peace talks restarted in 7/2013. (REU 1/10)

Off the n. coast of the Gaza Strip, Israeli naval vessels open fire on Palestinian fishermen, causing no casualties or damage to the boats. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 2 villages and al-Fawar r.c. nr. Hebron, and in 1 village each nr. Ramallah and Tulkarm at night; patrols in 2 villages nr. Jericho in the morning, and in 2 villages nr. Hebron and 1 village nr. Jericho at night. Also, IDF troops bulldoze a dozen houses and agricultural buildings in the s. Jordan Valley n. of Jericho, leaving around 50 Palestinians homeless. (MNA 12/2; PCHR 12/5)

Israeli Defense Ministry figures obtained by NGO Peace Now show that DM Moshe Ya’alon approved construction of 3,000 housing units in West Bank settlements during the 1st 4 mos. of his term (3–7/2013). (HA 12/2)

The General Union of Palestinian Teachers launches an open strike. The union’s demands include a 2.03% increase of the cost-of-living salary, which has been deducted since the beginning of 2013. Abdul-Ghani al-Uweiei, spokesperson for the PA’s atty. gen., says that the minister of education has asked the atty. gen. to proceed with legal measures against the secy.-gen. of the teachers’ union. (MNA 2/12)

The Israeli army fires into Syria after its troops were shot at in the occupied Golan Heights. The original gunfire came from the Syrian side of the border, nr. Qunaytra, but it is unclear if it was intentional. No casualties are reported on either side. Separately, a Syrian mortar shell lands in Majdal Shams in the occupied Golan Heights, causing no casualties. Meanwhile, UN human rights chief Navi Pillay says that evidence collected by UN investigators implicates Pres. Asad in the commission of war crimes. (HA, REU 2/12)

The Lebanese govt. authorizes the army to take charge of security in Tripoli for 6 mos., following frequent violent clashes between supporters and opponents of Syria’s Pres. Asad. The latest round of fighting saw 12 killed and more than 100 wounded. (AP 12/2)

In the West Bank, IDF troops uproot around 60 olive trees in Tuqu‘ village nr. Bethlehem, while separately, Jewish settlers nr. Nablus attack a house in Burin village, throwing stones and a Molotov cocktail, causing no injuries. (MNA 11/25; PCHR 11/28)

The Israeli NGO Peace Now announces that an Israeli military cmte. has approved the construction of 829 new homes in West Bank settlements Givat Ze’ev, Nofei Prat, Shilo, Givat Salit, and Nokdim. The planned construction is condemned by Nabil Abu Rdeineh, aide to PA Pres. Abbas, as a “policy of escalation aimed at putting obstacles in front of the peace process.” (AFP, REU 11/25)

UN Secy.-Gen. Ban Ki-moon announces that an international peace conference on Syria will take place in Switzerland on 1/22/14, in an attempt to bring about direct talks between the Syrian govt. and opposition forces. The statement describes 1 of the key goals of the peace talks as “the establishment, based on mutual consent, of a transitional governing body with full executive powers, including over military and security entities.” (AP, REU 11/25) 

Pres. Obama, speaking during a visit to San Francisco, defends the deal with Iran, saying that the U.S. “cannot close the door on diplomacy.” In a clear criticism of those who have attacked the agreement, Obama says that “tough talk and bluster may be the easy thing to do politically, but it’s not the right thing to do for our security.” Meanwhile, Israeli PM Netanyahu announces that national security adviser Yossi Cohen will visit Washington to discuss the agreement with U.S. officials. In the UK, Foreign Secy. William Hague urges Israel to refrain “from taking any steps that would undermine this agreement.” (REU 11/25; AP 11/26)

In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops open fire on Palestinian fishermen nr. Khan Yunis, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 1 village and al-Fawar and al- ‘Arub r.c. nr. Hebron at night. In East Jerusalem, Israeli security forces demolish a Palestinian family’s mobile home in Bayt Hanina. (MNA 11/12; PCHR 11/14)

Israel’s Housing Ministry has issued tenders for drawing up construction plans for some 24,000 new settlement homes in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, it is claimed by NGO Peace Now. The plans include 1,200 housing units for the E-1 area nr. Jerusalem. However, soon after the announcement, PM Netanyahu halts the move and says that Housing Minister Uri Ariel had drawn up the plans without any advance coordination. Netanyahu claims that the preliminary plans damage Israel’s international standing and ability to assert itself with regard to Iran. (AP, REU 11/12)

In the West Bank, IDF troops open fire with rubber-coated bullets and stun grenades on stone-throwing Palestinians in Hebron. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 1 village each nr. Ramallah and Salfit at night; patrols in al-Bireh in the morning, and 1 village nr. Qalqilya and al-Fawar r.c. nr. Hebron at night. Jewish settlers destroy 20 dunams of land nr. Nablus, while separately, settlers set fire to dozens of olive trees also nr. Nablus. (AFP, MNA, PNN 9/23; PCHR 9/26)

IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz says that the killing of 2 Israeli soldiers in the last 3 days does not reflect a general trend, and that the 2 incidents are isolated and unrelated. The Israeli media reports disquiet from security sources about the performance of the PA’s security forces in light of the recent events. (HA 9/24)

An Egyptian court bans the activities of the Muslim Brotherhood as an NGO and orders its funds seized. U.S. State Dept. spokesperson Jen Psaki says that Washington will wait to see how such a decision will be implemented and urges all parties to embrace an inclusive political process. Egypt’s interim govt. subsequently says it is no rush to dismantle the Brotherhood and prefers for a ruling from a higher tribunal. (AP, REU 9/23; AP 9/24)

In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops open fire on Palestinian fishermen nr. Bayt Lahiya, causing no damage or injuries. Two explosions target an IDF patrol operating adjacent to the Gaza border nr. Qarni crossing, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, IDF troops demolish residential and agricultural Palestinian-owned structures in the Jordan Valley, clashing with residents and injuring 5. There are also clashes in Nablus during an IDF arrest raid, leaving 2 Palestinians injured. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in Jenin and 2 nearby villages, Hebron and 2 nearby villages at night; patrols in 1 village nr. Hebron in the afternoon, and in 2 villages nr. Tulkarm and 1 village each nr. Jenin and Hebron at night. (MNA, ToI, WAFA 9/2; PCHR 9/5)

Pres. Obama’s hopes of persuading the U.S. Congress to support military action against Syria are dealt a blow with Democratic lawmakers expressing scepticism following a briefing with Obama’s national security aides, according to Rep. Jim Moran. However, Obama picks up support from Republican sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham. (REU 9/2)

An Egyptian govt.-backed judicial panel recommends the dissolution of the Muslim Brotherhood as a legally registered nongovernment organization (NGO). It is a nonbinding decision. (Guardian, REU 9/2)

In the Gaza Strip, Israeli authorities partially open the Kerem Shalom crossing to allow entry of 220 truckloads of goods for the commercial, agricultural, and aid sectors. Cooking gas is also pumped through the crossing. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts an arrest raid in 1 village nr. Nablus including the participation of undercover forces. (MNA 6/9; PCHR 6/13)

Israeli NGO Peace Now reveals official govt. figures showing that building of West Bank settlement homes hit a 7-year high in the 1st quarter of 2013, with 865 housing starts compared to 313 for the same period in 2012. Meanwhile, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu emphasizes at a cabinet meeting that his govt. is committed to reaching an agreement that would see the establishment of a demilitarized Palestinian state. (AFP, AP 6/9)

U.S. troops begin military exercises in Jordan, with more than 4,500 U.S. soldiers, some 3,000 Jordanians, and 500 British soldiers participating. The drills also involve the deployment of Patriot missiles and fighter jets, which may be kept by Jordan after the exercises finish. (REU 6/9)

Unidentified assailants shoot and kill an Egyptian counterterrorism officer in al-Arish in the Sinai Peninsula. (AP 6/9)

Australian television channel ABC broadcasts claims that dual IsraeliAustralian citizen Ben Zygier committed suicide in a high-security Israeli jail in 2010 after being held for months in great secrecy and known only as ‘‘Prisoner X.’’ ABC says that the man had been recruited by Mossad. The Israeli government refuses to comment and immediately forces Israeli publications to remove reference to the story from online and print editions. However, a number of MKs refer to the story in the Knesset. (HP, REU 2/12)

In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 1 village each nr. Hebron and Jenin in the morning, and in 1 village nr. Jenin in the afternoon; conducts house searches and arrest raids in 1 village each nr. Jenin and Tulkarm in the morning, and in 1 village each nr. Bethlehem, Jenin, Jerusalem, Nablus, and Ramallah at night. (PCHR 2/14)

International NGO Human Rights Watch (HRW) concludes that at least 18 Israeli air strikes in Operation Pillar of Defense in November 2012 were in violation of the laws of war, highlighting specific attacks that killed at least 43 Palestinian civilians, including 12 children. (HRW 2/12)

Palestinian Ministry of Finance spokesperson Rami Mahdawi says that Israel is still withholding Palestinian tax revenue in breach of the 1994 Paris Protocol. (MNA 2/12)

The Senate Armed Services Comm. votes (14–11) along party lines to approve Pres. Obama’s nomination of Chuck Hagel to be the nation’s defense secretary, allowing his nomination to advance to the full Senate. Hagel’s nomination continues to be fiercely opposed by groups and senators known to have a pro-Israel line. (AP 2/12)

U.S. State Dept. spokesperson Victoria Nuland says that Secy. of State John Kerry, appointed on 2/1, is working to try to free up almost $700 m. in aid for the PA held up in Congress. Separate from that figure is an additional $100 m., which has been released but can only be used on anti-narcotics and law enforcement. (AFP 2/11)

Hamas says that the Egyptian army is flooding tunnels between the Gaza Strip and Sinai used for smuggling, and that there is a reinforced troop presence on the border. Meanwhile, Turkish media reports that Israel has agreed to allow Turkish trucks to bring building materials into Gaza for the construction of a hospital that will be opened by PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan. (HA 2/11)

Israeli NGO Peace Now says that Israel has given final approval to 90 new homes in Beit El settlement nr. Ramallah. (AFP 2/11)

Israeli naval vessels open fire on Palestinian fishermen off the Gaza coast nr. al-Waha, causing no injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF destroys 3 structures, including a home, in Bayt Awa village nr. Hebron. The demolitions prompt clashes with residents, and 1 Palestinian is injured from a tear-gas canister to the leg. The IDF patrols in 1 village each nr. Jenin and Tulkarm in the morning; conducts house searches and arrest raids in Bethlehem and nearby Aida r.c., Tulkarm, 2 villages nr. Hebron, and 1 village each nr. Nablus, Qalqilya, and Tulkarm at night. (MNA 2/11; PCHR 2/14)

Palestinians in the Gaza Strip and West Bank start registering to vote in preparation for legislative and presidential elections, the dates for which have not been set. Once the process is completed, an election could theoretically be called for 3 mos. later. (REU 2/11)

Two Israeli companies sign an agreement to acquire a 30% stake in exploration rights for gas and oil off Cyprus’s s. shore to be carried out by U.S. company Noble Energy. Cypriot commerce min. Neoclis Sylikiotis says the deal marks a ‘‘new era of Cyprus-Israeli strategic cooperation.’’ (AFP 2/11)

White House spokesperson Jay Carney responds to a question about the consequences of the Israeli election for peace efforts by restating the administration’s call for a resumption of direct negotiations on final-status issues. Meanwhile, the UN’s special coordinator for the Middle East peace process, Robert Serry, tells a UNSC meeting that courageous steps by Israeli and Palestinian leaders are required to save the two-state solution. At the meeting, Palestinian FM Riyad al-Maliki sits behind a ‘‘State of Palestine’’ nameplate, drawing criticism from U.S. amb. Susan Rice, who says that the U.S. does not recognize the UNGA vote in 11/2012 (see Quarterly Update in JPS 166). After the meeting, Maliki says that the Palestinians’ decision about whether to go to the ICC over Israel’s settlement construction will depend on what the Israeli government does in the E1 area nr. Jerusalem. (AP, REU, UNNC 1/23)

Israeli naval vessels open fire on Palestinian fishermen off the Gaza coast nr. al-Waha, causing no injuries. The IDF also makes a brief incursion into Gaza to a distance of 200 m from the border fence nr. Bayt Hanun to level land. In the West Bank, IDF soldiers open fire on Palestinians at the entrance to al-‘Arub r.c. nr. Hebron, killing 1 woman with a shot to the head. Eyewitnesses say the soldiers were traveling in a civilian car. Also, a Palestinian teenager shot by the IDF during clashes in Aida r.c. on 1/18 dies in the hospital. The IDF patrols in 1 village nr. Ramallah in the morning, in 1 village nr. Ramallah in the afternoon, and in 2 villages nr. Hebron at night; conducts house searches and arrest raids in 1 village each nr. Hebron and Jenin at night. (MNA, PCHR, WAFA 1/23)

Human rights NGO the Palestinian Center for Human Rights publishes a list of media workers in the Gaza Strip arrested by Hamas security services over the previous 48 hours. Meanwhile, dep. head of Hamas politburo Musa Abu Marzuq says that there is no disagreement within Hamas about Mahmud Abbas heading a unity government. (MNA 1/23)

PA fin. min. Nabil Qassis says that the government’s financial crisis is structural, requiring systematic changes in the budget and culture. He reveals that the deficit has now exceeded $1.4 b. (MNA 1/23)

Jordan holds parliamentary elections, which are boycotted by the Muslim Brotherhood–affiliated Islamic Action Front. The boycott is based on claims that the electoral system is biased in favor of rural tribal areas where pro-regime sentiment is highest, in contrast to large, more densely populated urban areas, where pro-Brotherhood views are strong among poor Palestinians. In the election, 1,425 candidates compete for 150 seats, up from 120, in the lower house. King Abdallah has agreed to cede some powers to the new legislature, such as choosing the PM and running day-to-day affairs. There are numerous reports of vote-buying and small-scale clashes in Karak governorate and some districts of Amman. The results see pro-government candidates maintain their dominance of the parliament, though 37 Islamist and other government critics win seats in the legislature. (AKH, AP, NYT, REU 1/23; AP, REU 1/24)

The Lebanese army states that 12 Israeli warplanes violated Lebanese airspace overnight, claiming that the breach of Lebanon’s sovereignty is a violation of UN Res. 1701, which was accepted as the basis for the cease-fire that ended the Israeli-Lebanon war of 2006. (Daily Star 1/23)

The Israeli government issues tenders for 198 new settlement homes in Hebron and Efrata (Gush Etzion bloc). Meanwhile, the Jerusalem municipality approves the planned relocation of the National Defense College to the Mount of Olives. Also, Israeli NGO Peace Now says that approval for settlement plans jumped 300% in 2012, and that under Netanyahu’s premiership, 40% of construction starts in settlements were in settlements located outside of the so-called blocs that Israel intends to keep under a final-status agreement. (AP, JP, YA 1/16)

In the Gaza Strip, the IDF fires warning shots at Palestinians scavenging for construction materials close to the border fence in the n. Gaza Strip, causing no injuries. In a separate incident, the IDF shells an open area 200 m from the border nr. Bureij, causing no injuries. In the West Bank, The IDF raids Aida r.c. in Bethlehem, opening fire on Palestinians with live ammunition, rubber-coated steel bullets, and tear-gas grenades, seriously wounding 1. The IDF says that Palestinian protesters threw stones and firebombs at the Separation Wall and Israeli forces. Palestinian news agencies report that the raid was in response to the Palestinians opening a hole in the bottom of the wall nr. Rachel’s Tomb. The IDF also demolishes sheep barns and sheds nr. Jericho; patrols in Tulkarm and 1 village each nr. Hebron, Jenin, and Jericho at night; conducts house searches and arrest raids in 1 village each nr. Hebron, Jenin, and Salfit at night. Meanwhile, an IDF investigation concludes that Israeli soldiers fired 80 bullets without justification when they mortally wounded a Palestinian man in al-Nabi Salih on 11/17 (he died on 11/19). Jewish settlers raze land nr. 2 separate settlements in the Jordan Valley and nr. Nablus in preparation for expansion. (MNA, WAFA 1/16; PCHR, PNN 1/17)

Israeli security forces dismantle Palestinian protest camp Bab al-Shams in the E1 zone nr. Jerusalem, after the Supreme Court authorizes the government to dismantle the site. Protesters were removed on 1/12, but the tents had remained. Separately, the High Court of Justice orders the state to refrain from evicting Palestinians from 8 villages in the s. Hebron Hills in an area the IDF has designated a firing zone for training. (REU 1/16; AFP, HA 1/17)

Dep. head of Hamas’s political bureau Musa Abu Marzuq says that the movement will not agree to dismantle the IQB as part of a prospective reconciliation deal with Fatah. He makes the comments in response to recent reports in al-Quds al-Arabi that Fatah is demanding Hamas dismantle its armed wing and integrate it into the PA security forces. (ToI 1/16)

The EU grants €100 m. to the PA and to UNRWA to provide essential services in the West Bank. Palestinian pres. Abbas announces that Saudi Arabia will give the struggling PA $100 m. to alleviate the PA’s financial crisis. (IMEMC, REU 1/16)

Israeli newspaper Yedi’ot Aharonot reports that the EU is preparing a new plan for Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, to be presented following the forthcoming Israeli elections. The plan reportedly will be detailed and aim to complete negotiations on core issues during 2013. The initiative is sponsored by the British and French foreign ministries, but could be adopted by the whole EU. The PA subsequently says it is unaware of such a plan. Meanwhile, Jordan’s King Abdallah tells the French media that his country is working with European countries to restart the stalled negotiations. (AFP, JP 1/13; JP 1/14)

Israeli NGO Peace Now says that Israel’s Defense Ministry has published plans for around 200 new housing units in the West Bank settlement of Rotem in the Jordan Valley. Meanwhile, PM Netanyahu tells the cabinet that the government will ‘‘not allow anyone to harm the contiguity between Jerusalem and Ma’ale Adumim,’’ referring to the removal of Palestinian activists from the Bab al-Shams protest camp in the E1 area. (AFP, JP 1/13)

Israeli naval vessels open fire on Palestinian fishermen off the Gaza coast nr. al-Waha, causing no injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 1 village nr. Ramallah in the morning and in 1 village each nr. Qalqilya and Ramallah at night; conducts house searches and arrest raids in Jenin in the afternoon, and in Nablus, Qalqilya, and 1 village each nr. Bethlehem, Hebron, Jenin, and Nablus at night. (PCHR 1/17)

Armed Palestinians protest in Jenin r.c., demanding the PA security forces return confiscated weapons to the resistance. The PA vows (1/14) to investigate the demonstration. (MNA 1/14)

Palestinian PM Salam Fayyad meets Arab League mbrs. to discuss the PA’s cash crisis and ways of raising the $100 m. promised by Arab countries but as yet undelivered. Fayyad claims that the situation may push 1.5 m. Palestinians into poverty. The Arab League agrees to form a delegation to press mbr. states to meet their financial obligations to the PA. (AP, MNA 1/13)

Senior IDF officers brief Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu that Syrian armed opposition groups have taken up positions along the border of the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights. (JP 1/13)

The Pentagon is sending briefings to senators in order to rebut what it calls ‘‘myths’’ about Defense Secretary–designate Chuck Hagel in the face of opposition to his appointment, in particular by pro-Israel groups. (WT 1/13)