142 / 14490 Results
  • May 29, 2022

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers attacked Palestinians in Burin, throwing Molotov cocktails at several homes. Israeli settlers also assaulted 1 Palestinian man working his land near Ya‘bad,...

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  • June 19, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers opened fire at Palestinian-owned shops near Dayr Sharaf; no injuries were reported. Israeli settlers also raided al-Twana, injuring 1 Palestinian by throwing...

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  • November 23, 2020

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers used clubs to vandalize Palestinian-owned cars traveling near the Yitzhar settlement on the Nablus-Qalqilya road. Israeli forces demolished 1 house under...

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  • June 7, 2020

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers demolished 1 Palestinian-owned stone wall around agricultural lands in Bayt ‘Aynun. Israeli forces demolished several commercial barracks and street-vending...

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  • December 12, 2019

    In the West Bank, 14 Palestinians were arrested, including 11 during late-night raids in and around Hebron, Ramallah, Bethlehem, and Jericho; 3 were arrested at flying checkpoints near Qalqilya....

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  • June 21, 2017

    In the West Bank, IDF troops conduct raids in Dayr Abu Mash‘al nr. Ramallah for the 4th time this week, confiscating about 20 vehicles and arresting 2 relatives of the 3 Palestinians killed in a...

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  • January 19, 2015

    In the Gaza Strip, civil employees continue their strike for a 2d day, protesting the fact that they haven’t been paid a full salary since 6/2. Separately, almost 200 Palestinians gather nr. the...

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  • February 20, 2013

    PA senior negotiation officials Saeb Erekat and Mohammed Eshtaya arrive in Washington D.C. to update the Obama admin. about the PA’s current position on talks with Israel. They are expected to...

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  • February 14, 2013

    The Jerusalem District Court convicts Hamas-affliated PC mbrs. Khalid Abu Arafa and Muhammad Toutah of membership in a terrorist organization and illegally residing in Israel, following their...

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  • January 29, 2013

    Israel boycotts a periodic review at the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC), becoming the 1st country to do so. Israel cut its ties with the UNHRC in 3/2012 after the council approved a fact-finding...

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  • January 23, 2012

    In the morning, IDF troops on the n. Gaza border w. of the Erez crossing direct gunfire and 1 artillery shell at open areas around the former Nisanit settlement site, causing no reported injuries...

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  • June 14, 2011

    In Gaza, 1 Palestinian is injured in a smuggling tunnel accident on the Rafah border. In the West Bank, the IDF bulldozes the bedouin village of Fasayil al-Wusta in the Jordan Valley, saying it...

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  • January 13, 2011

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

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  • December 27, 2010

    In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in Tulkarm and in 5 villages nr. Qalqilya, 2 each nr. Jenin and Salfit, and 1 each nr. Jericho, Nablus, Ramallah, and Tulkarm; conducts a late-night raid on the...

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  • November 3, 2010

    In the morning, Israeli drones make an air strike on a car driving w. of Gaza City, assassinating Army of Islam (AOI) senior mbr. Muhammad al-Nemnem, wounding 2 bystanders; Israel later accuses...

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  • November 19, 2009

    In the West Bank, the IDF stages synchronized late-night raids on the homes of 5 PA intelligence officers in villages nr. Nablus and Salfit, detaining the men (including the PA’s Salfit regional...

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  • January 29, 2009

    An IDF drone fires a rocket at Muhammad al-Sumairi (affiliation unknown) riding a motorcycle in Khan Yunis, seriously inuring him in an apparent assassination attempt, and wounding 17 bystanders,...

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  • January 4, 2009

    IDF ground forces backed by naval and air support continue to enter Gaza overnight, with troops taking up positions across n. Gaza (from which most Palestinian rockets have been fired),...

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  • January 3, 2009

    Israel begins phase 2 of OCL, a massive ground advance into Gaza, in the evening. The IDF states that “the objective . . . is to destroy the terrorist infrastructure of the Hamas in the precise...

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  • January 2, 2009

    Israel’s security cabinet authorizes the IDF to open phase 2 of OCL at its discretion by sending ground troops into Gaza “to destroy the terrorist infrastructure of the Hamas in the area of...

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  • December 16, 2008

    Overnight, Islamic Jihad mbrs. in Gaza fire more than a dozen rockets into Israel in retaliation for the IDF’s 12/15 assassination of Nawahda, causing no damage or injuries. The IDF makes 2 air...

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  • March 18, 2008

    The IDF makes an air strike on Bayt Lahiya in a failed attempt to assassinate Islamic Jihad mbrs. Ihab Abu Jarad, Nidal Shaqqura, and Muhammad alZa’nin as they walk in a crowded residential area,...

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  • March 12, 2008

    Hamas’s Haniyeh publicly offersIsrael a comprehensive cease-fire deal covering the West Bank and Gaza in exchange for a lifting of the siege of Gaza and a halt to all Israeli “assassinations,...

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  • November 25, 2007

    IDF troops encamped in the Erez industrial zone since 11/23 fire on local Palestinians who stray nr. the zone, wounding 1. Palestinians fire 4 mortars fr. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or...

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  • August 20, 2007

    The IDF shells a car driving nr. al-Bureij r.c., assassinating 2 ESF officers (Muhammad Abu ‘Arab, Ali Baroud) and 4 Hamas mbrs. (Ismail Abu Abda, ‘Abid Abu Hilu, Ahmad al-Qrainawi, Muhammad al-...

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  • July 1, 2007

    In Gaza, Palestinians fire 3 mortars at IDF bulldozers clearing Palestinian land on the Gaza side of the Erez crossing, causing no damage or injuries. The IDF bulldozes Palestinian land nr. the...

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  • June 30, 2007

    The IDF makes 7 air strikes on Hamas and Islamic Jihad targets in Gaza, assassinating 3 senior Islamic Jihad cmdrs. (Raed Ghannam, Ziyad Ghannam, Muhammad al-Ra‘i) and wounding 7 bystanders in a...

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  • June 14, 2007

    Hamas presses its offensive in Gaza, taking over all PA ministry offices in Gaza City, securing control of Rafah, forcing PSF officers to surrender their Gaza City headquarters (after destroying...

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  • June 3, 2007

    In Gaza, Hamas fires mortars at the IDF post at Erez crossing, wounding 4 IDF soldiers. In the West Bank, the IDF raids Jenin, exchanging fire with Palestinian gunmen, killing Muhammad Farhati,...

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  • April 21, 2007

    The IDF makes an air strike on a rocketlaunching site in n. Gaza, killing 1 Palestinian. In the West Bank, the IDF sends undercover units into Jenin, where they ambush, fatally shoot AMB mbrs....

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In the West Bank, Israeli settlers attacked Palestinians in Burin, throwing Molotov cocktails at several homes. Israeli settlers also assaulted 1 Palestinian man working his land near Ya‘bad, causing bruises. Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinian protesters in Bazariya, leading to tear-gas related injuries. Israeli forces also violently dispersed Palestinian protesters in Burin, injuring 2 with baton rounds and 7 with tear gas. Elsewhere, Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinian protesters in Dayr Sharaf, injuring 1 with a baton round and 23 with tear gas. Israeli forces also violently dispersed Palestinian protesters near Tulkarm, causing tear-gas related injuries. Meanwhile, Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinian protesters in al-Bireh, injuring 2 with baton rounds and others with tear gas. Israeli forces also violently dispersed Palestinian protesters at the Jalama checkpoint, causing tear-gas related injuries. Separately, Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinian protesters in Atuf, causing tear-gas related injuries. Israeli forces also raided Dheisheh refugee camp, injuring 3 Palestinians with live ammunition. In East Jerusalem, some 70,000 Israeli settlers and racist right-wing Israeli activists marched through the Old City, chanting racist and Islamophobic slogans like “Death to Arabs,” insulting the Prophet Muhammad, and mocking the death of Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh during the annual flag march; Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinians protesting the march; 81 were injured by baton rounds and pepper spray, 23 of whom were treated at hospitals. More than 60 were arrested, only 2 of which were Israeli settlers. Israeli settlers also attacked several Palestinians and their property in the Old City, including with assault and pepper spray. More than 2,500 Israeli settlers led by MK Itamar Ben-Gvir also toured the Haram al-Sharif compound, raising Israeli flags. Elsewhere, after the flag march, Israeli settlers attacked Palestinians and their property, including several vehicles in Sheikh Jarrah, assaulting 1 Palestinian journalist covering the events for the Israeli public broadcaster Kan. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at Palestinians east of al-Qarara and Gaza City; no injuries were reported. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen west of Gaza; no injuries were reported. (REU, WAFA 5/26; ALM, HA, MEE, REU 5/27; ALM, HA, MDW 5/28; AJ, AJ, AJ, AP, HA, HA, MDW, MEE, MEE, NPR, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WSJ 5/29; AJ, AJ, ALM, ALM, AP, CNN, HA, HA, HA, IN, LAT, MEE 5/30; MEMO 5/31; AP, HA, HA 6/2; UNOCHA 6/4)

While speaking at Elon Moreh during an event celebrating the Israeli occupation of East Jerusalem, the commander of the Samaria brigade Roi Zweig said that “the [Israeli] army and the settlement enterprise are one and the same.” (HA 5/30; MDW 6/3)

The Israeli government told the high court of justice that it is enforcing a ban on Israeli settlers accessing the Homesh settlement outpost. Haaretz reporting said that the Israeli military is not enforcing the ban and allows Israeli settlers to access the outpost regularly. (HA 6/2)

The Times of Israel reported that the U.S. Biden administration had shelved plans to reopen the U.S. consulate to Palestinians in Jerusalem and instead is promoting the deputy assistant secretary of state for Israeli and Palestinian affairs Hady Amr to special envoy to Palestinians. The Palestinian Affairs Unit at the U.S. embassy to Israel will, according to the TOI reporting, begin to report to Hady Amr rather than to the U.S. ambassador to Israel. PA officials have voiced frustration with the U.S. administration for failing to fulfill its promises to Palestine and using the Israeli government coalition’s instability as an excuse. (TOI 5/29; AA 5/30; MEMO 5/31; HA 6/2)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers opened fire at Palestinian-owned shops near Dayr Sharaf; no injuries were reported. Israeli settlers also raided al-Twana, injuring 1 Palestinian by throwing stones. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers spray-painted insults at the Muslim Prophet Muhammad on a road between Jericho and the Dead Sea. Israeli forces raided Jaba‘, leading to confrontations with Palestinians; tear-gas related injuries were reported. Elsewhere, Israeli forces continued blocking the main road to ‘Azun for the 4th day in a row. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinians at the Damascus Gate plaza, injuring 2 and arresting 3. Israeli forces also violently dispersed Palestinians in Shaykh Jarrah and Silwan, causing tear-gas related injuries. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya; no injuries were reported. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at Palestinians gathered near the Gaza fence east of Khuza‘a; no injuries were reported. In Israel, Israeli forces raided a wedding celebration in Dayr al-Asad after a celebratory gunshot was fired in the air; during the raid, clashes broke out, and 1 Palestinian Israeli was critically injured and 2 Israeli officers were moderately and lightly injured; 2 police cars were set on fire and 11 were arrested. (HA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 6/19; HA, MEMO, WAFA, WAFA 6/20; WAFA 6/21; PCHR 6/24)

In Iran, Ebrahim Raisi won the presidential elections after the lowest voter turnout in Iran’s history. President-elect Raisi is subject to U.S. sanctions for alleged human rights abuses of overseeing the executions of political prisoners in the 1980s. Raisi is said to be much more conservative than the current outgoing president Hassan Rouhani. (AJ, AJ, AJ, ALM, HA 6/19; AJ, AP, HA, MEE, REU, REU 6/20; REU 6/21)

EU’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said, during a trip to Beirut, that EU aid to Lebanon is conditioned on political reforms in the country. (MEMO 6/20)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers used clubs to vandalize Palestinian-owned cars traveling near the Yitzhar settlement on the Nablus-Qalqilya road. Israeli forces demolished 1 house under construction in Halhul. 4 Palestinians were arrested during a raid near Ramallah; during the raid, Israeli forces clashed with Palestinians, leading to 1 injury and 1 Palestinian-owned vehicle was seized by the Israeli forces. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces harassed several Palestinians in al-Tur, leading to clashes; tear-gas related injuries were reported and 2 Palestinians were arrested. 4 Palestinians were also arrested during raids in Issawiyya and the Old City. (WAFA 11/23; PCHR 11/26)

The PA announced new lockdown measures against the spread of the COVID-19 virus, including a lockdown from 6 p.m.-7 a.m. every day and a general all-day lockdown on Fridays and Saturdays. The lockdown will be in effect for 2 weeks. The West Bank had 5 new deaths and 869 new cases on 11/23. (WAFA, WAFA 11/23)

The Jerusalem District Court rejected the appeal of a Palestinian family against their eviction from their home in Silwan. The court said the family of 26 had to leave the house they have occupied since 1967 to allow Israeli settlers to move in. (PCN 11/24; HA 11/26)

PA prime minister Muhammad Shtayyeh said that the PA will start repaying its dues to public servants and retirees who have not been receiving full payments since February, when the PA starts receiving the money owed to it by Israel later this week. Prime Minister Shtayyeh said payment of dues for salaries remained the priority but recognized that the PA also will pay back all of its other unpaid bills to various sectors and contractors. (WAFA 11/23)

According to the deputy leader of Fatah Mahmoud Alalul, the PA and president-elect Joe Biden’s team have made several understandings on how to proceed with the U.S.-PA relations after President-elect Biden is sworn in come January. Among the issues are definition of settlement products and the U.S. recognition of people born in East Jerusalem as Israelis. (HA 11/24)

An Israeli court forced the Israeli ministry of interior to publish guidelines for a scheme that would allow some 20,000 Palestinians from East Jerusalem to obtain Israeli citizenship faster than the normal process, which is extremely strenuous for Palestinians. (HA 11/24)

Without formally conceding the election, U.S. president Donald Trump said in a tweet that he had allowed the General Services Administration to prepare for President-elect Biden’s transition to the presidency. President Trump continues to maintain that he really won the election because Biden’s victory was based on voter fraud, an assertion he has not backed with any evidence. (HA 11/23)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers demolished 1 Palestinian-owned stone wall around agricultural lands in Bayt ‘Aynun. Israeli forces demolished several commercial barracks and street-vending stalls in al-Ram and delivered demolition notifications for 2 Palestinian-owned homes east of Yatta. Elsewhere, Israeli forces set up mobile homes and tents near Bayt Furik. 5 Palestinians were arrested, including 2 during late-night raids in Bayt Fajjar and 3 at checkpoints near Ramallah, Nablus, and Qalqilya. In East Jerusalem, 6 Palestinians were arrested during house raids in Issawiyya and the Old City. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire on Palestinian agricultural lands east of al-Maghazi and Dayr al-Balah; no injuries were reported. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 6/7; PCHR 6/11)

The PA ministry of awqaf and religious affairs said in a report that Israeli authorities prevented the call for prayers at the Ibrahimi Mosque 54 times in May. (WAFA 6/7)

A 2d plane from the UAE carrying COVID-19-related aid materials landed in Tel Aviv. When the 1st flight landed on 5/19, the PA refused the aid as the UAE had not coordinated with the PA beforehand; the aid instead went solely to Gaza. PA prime minister Muhammad Shtayyeh said that the PA again had not been informed about the aid shipment. (HA, REU 6/9)

More than 1 week after Israeli police killed 1 unarmed Palestinian man with autism on a street in East Jerusalem, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu commented on the killing for the 1st time, calling it “a tragedy.” Prime Minister Netanyahu told his cabinet that he expects “complete examinations into this matter.” (HA, REU 6/7)

In the West Bank, 14 Palestinians were arrested, including 11 during late-night raids in and around Hebron, Ramallah, Bethlehem, and Jericho; 3 were arrested at flying checkpoints near Qalqilya. During a raid in Ramallah, 1 Palestinian paramedic was injured by gunfire as Palestinians clashed with Israeli forces; others suffered tear-gas related injuries. In Israel, a Palestinian village was raided by Israeli extremists, slashing the tires of some 20 Palestinian-owned vehicles and writing racist graffiti like “Muhammad is a pig” on buildings, including a mosque. (AJ, HA, WAFA, WAFA 12/12; PCHR 12/19)

A spokesperson for Israel’s military liaison said that none of the around 1,000 Palestinian Christians in Gaza would be allowed entry to the West Bank to celebrate Christmas or visit family. (REU 12/12; WAFA 12/13; HA 12/14)

In the West Bank, IDF troops conduct raids in Dayr Abu Mash‘al nr. Ramallah for the 4th time this week, confiscating about 20 vehicles and arresting 2 relatives of the 3 Palestinians killed in a confrontation with Israeli forces on 6/16. They also arrest 2 Palestinians during latenight raids nr. Hebron and Nablus, and patrol during the day nr. Hebron. Israeli forces level land nr. Nablus for a 2d day in a row. In East Jerusalem, around 300,000 Muslims pray at Haram al-Sharif late at night, marking Laylat al-Qadr, the night Muslims observe to mark the revelation of the Qur’an to the Prophet Muhammad. (MNA, WAFA 6/21; HA, PCHR, WAFA 6/22; PCHR 7/6)

Son-in-law and senior advisor to U.S. pres. Jared Kushner arrives in Israel and meets with Israeli PM Netanyahu to discuss U.S. efforts to restart Palestinian-Israeli peace talks. According to the White House, the 2 sides reaffirmed their desire to make peace and acknowledged the need for “economic opportunities for Palestinians and major investment in the Palestinian economy.” Kushner and U.S. rep. Greenblatt then travel to Ramallah to meet with PA pres. Abbas. No further details are made available. (HA, TOI, WHPO, YA 6/21; WAFA 6/22)

Netanyahu meets with several top defense and security officials to approve a new “security strategy” for Damascus Gate, the main entrance to Jerusalem’s Muslim Quarter, following the 6/16 attack in East Jerusalem. The new strategy reportedly includes new “surveillance points,” increased numbers of cameras, and other measures. (They will announce it on 6/22.) (MNA 6/22; TOI 6/23)

In the Gaza Strip, civil employees continue their strike for a 2d day, protesting the fact that they haven’t been paid a full salary since 6/2. Separately, almost 200 Palestinians gather nr. the French Cultural Center in Gaza City to protest the recent publication of cartoons featuring the Prophet Muhammad by Parisbased satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo. Gaza’s police arrest 7 of the protesters. Late at night after the protests, unknown assailants set off a homemade bomb under the car of an administrative official with Hamas’s military police, which was parked outside his home in Shaykh Radwan. Off the coast nr. al-Sudaniyya, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats, causing no injuries. Additionally, Israeli naval forces capture a boat sailing from the Sinai to Gaza with materials for building rockets and detain the 3 Palestinians aboard, according to the IDF. (The incident will not be reported until 2/11, due to an IDF gag order.) In the West Bank, IDF troops expel 2 Palestinian women from their home in c. Hebron, then seal the property. In nearby villages, Israeli forces close 2 Palestinian-owned stores; destroy a well and an animal barn. They also deliver a stopwork order to a site nr. Jenin where Palestinians are building a new park. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids nr. Hebron, Ramallah, Qalqilya, Jenin, and at Nur Shams r.c. nr. Tulkarm. In East Jerusalem neighborhoods, Israeli forces demolish 2 homes and a residential building. As a result, 1 Palestinian woman is injured with a rubber-coated metal bullet during clashes with IDF troops in Issawiyya. Nearby, Israeli forces arrest 9 Palestinians, including 1 pregnant Palestinian journalist and 4 other women at Haram al-Sharif. Across Israel, 100s of Palestinians gather to protest the killing of 2 Palestinian bedouins in Rahat on 1/14 and 1/18. After a funeral for the man killed on 1/18, clashes break out between residents of Rahat and Israeli police, but police refrain from using crowddispersal measures on orders from a district cmdr. Meanwhile, residents of Rahat continue their strike. (MNA, WAFA 1/19; JP, MNA, WAFA 1/20; HA, MEE 1/21; PCHR 1/22; OCHA 1/23; YA 2/11)

In Brussels, EU FMs agree to appeal the Gen. Court of the EU’s 12/17 decision to remove Hamas from the body’s list of foreign terrorist organizations. (AFP, JP 1/19)

PA senior negotiation officials Saeb Erekat and Mohammed Eshtaya arrive in Washington D.C. to update the Obama admin. about the PA’s current position on talks with Israel. They are expected to discuss conditions for a resumption of talks—settlement construction freeze and prisoner release— with U.S. Secy. of State John Kerry. The PA officials will also ask Pres. Obama to present his own initiative to restart negotiations. (ToI 2/17; REU 2/19)

Palestinian journalists hold a sit-in protest outside the Ofer detention center as an Israeli military court hears the cases of detained Palestinian journalist Amir Abu Arafah and cartoonist Muhammad Sabanah. Israeli forces violently disperse the protesters, causing no serious injuries. In the West Bank, Jewish settlers from Esh Kodesh settlement outpost vandalize cars in Qusra village nr. Nablus. In a separate incident in the same village, the IDF demolishes an electricity grid in Qusra village nr. Nablus, provoking clashes with local residents. The IDF opens fire and wounds 2. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in Hebron and in 1 village each nr. Bethelehem, Hebron, and Jenin. (MNA 2/20; MNA, PCHR 2/21)

Hamas Minister of Economy Alaa Rafati says that Egypt’s crackdown on cross-border tunnels will fail if no alternative methods for importing produce are presented. Rafati says that the authorities in Gaza have told Cairo a number of times that an official commercial route should be opened along the border. (MNA 2/20)

The Jerusalem District Court convicts Hamas-affliated PC mbrs. Khalid Abu Arafa and Muhammad Toutah of membership in a terrorist organization and illegally residing in Israel, following their arrest in 1/2012 after they had stayed 569 days at the Red Cross office in Shaykh Jarrah neighborhood in East Jerusalem (see Quarterly Update in JPS 163). (JP 2/14)

In the Gaza Strip, the IDF opens fire on Palestinians close to the border fence nr. Bayt Hanun, injuring 2. IDF soldiers also make a brief incursion into the Gaza Strip nr. Bayt Lahiya to level land, opening fire on surrounding areas as they do so. In the West Bank, IDF soldiers open fire and wound a Palestinian when his car passes over a checkpoint nr. Qalqilya. The IDF also patrols in 1 village nr. Jenin in the afternoon and in Tulkarm at night; conducts house searches and arrest raids in 1 village nr. Hebron in the morning, and 1 village each nr. Jenin, Ramallah, and Salfit at night. (MNA 2/14; PCHR 2/21)

Republicans vote against the nomination of Chuck Hagel as defense secretary in a 58–40 vote in the Senate, delaying his approval and provoking Democrats’ anger at what they claim is an unprecedented filibuster. Sixty votes are required to pass a motion to stop debate and move the process on to a vote by the full senate. Another vote is expected later in the month and Obama says he expects the nomination to be approved. (REU 2/14)

Israel boycotts a periodic review at the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC), becoming the 1st country to do so. Israel cut its ties with the UNHRC in 3/2012 after the council approved a fact-finding mission to investigate Israeli settlements in the West Bank. (JP, REU 1/29)

Palestinian representative to the Arab League Muhammad Sbeih says that an Arab League delegation will soon visit the U.S. to submit a proposal for new ideas to move the Israeli-Palestinian peace process forward. (MNA 1/29)

A source in the Israeli PM’s Office says that Israel will renew the transfer of tax revenues to the PA, in light of the PA’s financial crisis. (HA 1/29)

A Palestinian man stabs and wounds an Israeli teenager at Tapuach Junction in the West Bank, and is subsequently arrested by Israeli security forces. Also in the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 1 village nr. Hebron in the afternoon, firing tear gas and stun grenades at stonethrowing Palestinians; conducts house searches and arrest raids in Bethlehem, Jenin, and 1 village each nr. Bethlehem and Jenin at night. In the case of alMughayyir village nr. Jenin, around 400 IDF soldiers participate in the raid, conducting house searches in 50 residences, and asking people to stand outside their homes to be photographed holding their ID numbers. In East Jerusalem, IDF soldiers deliver demolition notices to Palestinian families in a neighborhood of Anata village, affecting around 200 people; Israel plans to remove the neighborhood because of its proximity to Anatot military base. In the Gaza Strip, the IDF shoots and wounds a Palestinian collecting scrap metal close to the border fence nr. Bayt Hanun. The IDF also opens fire on Palestinians in another incident nr. Bayt Hanun, causing no injuries. (MNA 1/29; JP, MNA 1/30; PCHR 1/31)

The Lebanese military reports that Israeli Air Force jets flew over Lebanon’s airspace for several hours overnight. (HA 1/30)

In the morning, IDF troops on the n. Gaza border w. of the Erez crossing direct gunfire and 1 artillery shell at open areas around the former Nisanit settlement site, causing no reported injuries. IDF troops on the n. Gaza border nr. Bayt Lahiya launch 4 artillery shells at open areas near the border, causing no reported injuries. Late at night, Israeli warplanes make a total of 7 air strikes on greenhouses and open areas nr. the Bayt Lahiya border in the north, a suspected weapons factory in c. Gaza, and a smuggling tunnel on the Rafah border, causing no injuries. A Palestinian civilian dies of injuries sustained in a 11/14/01 IDF air strike on a UNRWA school in Khan Yunis. In the West Bank, the IDF demolishes 9 Palestinian stores in al-Oja village in the Jordan Valley, n. of Jericho; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Ramallah (where they target the home of Hamas-affiliated Reform and Change PC mbr. ‘Abd al-Jabir Fuqaha, arresting him, summoning his son for interrogation, and confiscating his computer, phone, and files), in Nablus, and nr. Hebron; conducts late-night patrols in 1 village nr. Qalqilya (summoning 3 Palestinians for interrogation). In East Jerusalem’s Shaykh Jarrah neighborhood, Israeli security forces raid the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) office and a protest tent outside, detaining Hamas-affiliated PC mbrs. Muhammad Toutah and Khalid Abu Arafa, who had been living at the ICRC offices since 6/2010 to protest Israel’s 9/2009 decision to revoke their Jerusalem IDs on the grounds that they are affiliated with a “terrorist organization” (i.e., Hamas); Israeli authorities expel them to the West Bank. Hamasaffiliated PC mbr. Ismail Ashkar comments, “Every time we move toward reconciliation and reactivating the Palestinian parliament, we see Israel targeting our lawmakers.” (AFP, JP, NYT, YA 1/24; WP, WT 1/25; PCHR 1/26; OCHA 1/27)

Israeli embassies and mission in the Hague, Brussels, London, New York, Boston, and Houston receive envelopes containing a suspicious white powder that turns out to be flour, raising fears of an anthrax attack. No one takes responsibility. (DS 1/24; JPI 2/3)

In Gaza, 1 Palestinian is injured in a smuggling tunnel accident on the Rafah border. In the West Bank, the IDF bulldozes the bedouin village of Fasayil al-Wusta in the Jordan Valley, saying it was erected on state land nr. a settler-only bypass road, displacing 103 bedouin (including 63 children); demolishes 2 wells nr. Hebron; patrols in 3 villages nr. Jenin and 1 nr. Tulkarm in the morning; arrests Qalqilya Fatah official Muhammad Walawil and his brother during the day, without giving cause; raids Tulkarm late at night to arrest 3 Palestinians who had ignored orders to appear before an Israeli military court on 6/13/11 to testify against a Palestinian prisoner. The IDF also escorts 8 Israeli MKs on a rare daytime visit to Joseph’s Tomb in Nablus, where they publicly call on the government to declare sovereignty over the site. Jewish settlers in Hebron vandalize nearby Palestinian homes. (WT 6/15; JPI 6/24)

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

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

In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in Tulkarm and in 5 villages nr. Qalqilya, 2 each nr. Jenin and Salfit, and 1 each nr. Jericho, Nablus, Ramallah, and Tulkarm; conducts a late-night raid on the Hebron home of Hamas-affiliated PC mbr. Muhammad al-Tal, arresting him. Palestinian, Israeli, and international activists march to the IDF’s Beit El checkpoint outside Ramallah and demand its removal; IDF soldiers fire tear gas, rubber-coated steel bullets, and stun grenades at the protesters, seriously injuring 1 Palestinian. Jewish settlers fr. Yitzhar settlement nr. Nablus burn and uproot at least 20 Palestinian olive trees nr. Madama village. (PCHR 12/30; OCHA 12/31)

In the morning, Israeli drones make an air strike on a car driving w. of Gaza City, assassinating Army of Islam (AOI) senior mbr. Muhammad al-Nemnem, wounding 2 bystanders; Israel later accuses Nemnem of involvement in “attacks against Israeli and U.S. targets in the Sinai Peninsula.” The IDF makes a brief incursion into c. Gaza e. of al-Bureij r.c. to level land and clear lines of sight; an Israeli tank fires a shell at the surrounding area, but no damage or injuries are reported. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols without incident in al-Yamun village in the afternoon; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Hebron and in Nabi Salih. In East Jerusalem, Israeli security forces conduct early morning arrest raids, house searches in Silwan, detaining 5 Palestinians (including 4 children ages 13–16). Of note: Israel prevents fmr. PA PM and negotiations adviser Ahmed Qurai‘ from crossing into Jordan via the Allenby crossing, citing a previously unannounced decision by the government that from now on only Pres. Abbas and PM Fayyad would receive special treatment; Israeli security officials say the decision had to do with Qurai‘’s recent statements denouncing Israel’s settlement policy. The PASF for the 1st time arrests a Palestinian for selling goods made in a Jewish settlement, enforcing the PA’s 4/2010 law prohibiting the sale of settlement-produced products (see Quarterly Updates in JPS 156–57); the defendant is jailed in Bethlehem pending trial. (MNA, YA 11/3; NYT, PCHR, UNSCO 11/4; OCHA 11/5; OCHA, PCHR 11/11)

In the West Bank, the IDF stages synchronized late-night raids on the homes of 5 PA intelligence officers in villages nr. Nablus and Salfit, detaining the men (including the PA’s Salfit regional intelligence cmdr. Lt. Col. Muhammad ‘Abd al-Hamid Bani Fadil), marking Israel’s first arrest of senior PA security officials in 3 yrs.; the IDF also relays to the PA a request to turn over a 6th intelligence officer, but the PA does not comply; the Israeli DMin. confirms the arrests but refuses to comment, with Palestinian security sources speculating (YA 11/20) that Israel was pressuring the PA to back off investigation of a suspected collaborator; all 5 are released on 11/20 after talks between Israel and the PA. The IDF also stages synchronized late-night house searches in 3 villages w. of Jenin, making no arrests. IDF undercover units traveling in a car with Palestinian license plates enter Bil‘in village, arrest a Palestinian on an Israeli wanted list. (YA 11/20; OCHA, PCHR 11/25)

An IDF drone fires a rocket at Muhammad al-Sumairi (affiliation unknown) riding a motorcycle in Khan Yunis, seriously inuring him in an apparent assassination attempt, and wounding 17 bystanders, including 11 children, a pregnant woman. IDF troops on the n. Gaza border fire on Palestinians and international activists repairing homes on the outskirts of Bayt Hanun, forcing them to leave the area but causing no injuries. Palestinians fire a rocket fr. Gaza into Israel (the 2d in 12 hrs.; see 1/28), causing no damage or injuries but raising concerns over the durability of the cease-fire. Israel allows 145 truckloads of goods (much of it seed and fodder) and 130 tons of medicine and medical equipment into Gaza. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in Qabatya, nr. Qalqilya. (UNIS 1/29; HA, MM, NYT, WP 1/30)

IDF ground forces backed by naval and air support continue to enter Gaza overnight, with troops taking up positions across n. Gaza (from which most Palestinian rockets have been fired), surrounding Gaza City, retaking the former Netzarim settlement site nr. the Gaza coast south of Gaza City, and bifurcating the Strip into e. and w. (cutting a swath roughly from the Qarni and Nahal Oz crossings to Netzarim on the coast, driving 1,000s of residents from Juhur al-Dik, al-Mughraqa, and al-Zahra’ with heavy artillery and tank fire), but not entering dense urban areas.

Combat notes: IDF-Palestinian ground fighting is described as “fierce,” characterized by heavy IDF artillery fire and heavy Palestinian sniping and mortar fire. Because the IDF stays out of built-up areas, there are few reports of close-quarter combat or heavy exchanges of gunfire. While ground troops concentrate in the north, Israeli air strikes and naval bombardment focus equally on the north and south, hitting more tunnels on the Rafah border and targeting Hamas leaders for assassination. (The IDF claims to assassinate Hamas rocket cmdr. Hussam Hamdan and IQB and long-range rocket cmdr. Muhammad Hilu in Khan Yunis, senior IQB mbr. Muhammad Shalbush in Jabaliya, but there is no independent confirmation.)

The IDF reports hitting 45 sites and carrying out 40 air strikes during the day, striking a produce market in Gaza City, several mosques, a medical building and 3 mobile clinics in Shati’ r.c. run by a Danish charity, homes of at least 4 Hamas mbrs. (most of whom have gone into hiding), and suspected weapons depots across Gaza. Target areas include Abasan, Bayt Hanun, Bayt Lahiya, al-Bureij r.c., Dayr al-Balah, Gaza City (al-Daraj, Tal al-Hawa, al-Tuffah, al-Yarmuk, al-Zaytun), Jabaliya, Juhur al-Dik, Khan Yunis, al-Mughraqa, al-Nasser (n. of Rafah), Rafah, Shati’ r.c., al-Shuka, al-Zahra’. After dark, IDF troops conduct door-to-door searches on the outskirts of Gaza City.

Palestinians fire 29 rockets (including at least 12 Grads) and 5 mortars into Israel, hitting Ashdod, Ashqelon, Netivot, Ofakim, and Sederot; 1 house in Sederot is damaged and 1 Israeli woman lightly injured. 

At least 47 Palestinians (including 4 paramedics) are killed and 400 wounded (including 3 paramedics) during the day; 1 IDF soldier is killed, 1 is seriously wounded in a heavy exchange of gunfire nr. Jabaliya; 15 IDF soldiers are wounded (3 seriously) by Palestinian mortar fire inside Gaza. The UN and Palestinian medical workers estimate the Palestinian toll to have reached at least 507 dead, 2,400 injured. The Israeli toll stands at 5–6 killed, more than 40 injured.

Humanitarian notes: The Israeli FMin. announced a new joint office of the FMin. and Israel’s Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories, called the Humanitarian Affairs Coordination Center (HACC), to coordinate humanitarian organizations operating on aid transfers to the Strip. The UN reports that shortages of fuel, electricity, and water are worsening. Gazan hospitals report drastic shortages of anesthesia, surgical equipment, heaters, spare parts. (AP, BBC, IDF, JAZ, National Public Radio, OCHA, REU, WT 1/4; IDF, IFM, NYT, RFM, UNOSAT, WP, WT 1/5; BBC 1/6; IFM, PCHR 1/8; WP 1/27)

In the West Bank, the IDF fatally shoots 1 Palestinian demonstrator who attempts to climb the separation wall nr. Qalqilya; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in al-Arub r.c. nr. Hebron, nr. Jenin. Israel’s High Court rules that the IDF may seal 2 floors of the home of the East Jerusalem Palestinian who killed 8 students at the Mercaz HaRava yeshiva in Jerusalem in 3/6/08, even though the gunman was killed during the attack and sealing the home would serve only to punish his extended family; another floor of the home will not be sealed because it is being rented to an unrelated family. (PCHR 1/8)

Israel begins phase 2 of OCL, a massive ground advance into Gaza, in the evening. The IDF states that “the objective . . . is to destroy the terrorist infrastructure of the Hamas in the precise area of operation, while taking control of some of [sic] rocket launching areas used by Hamas in order to greatly reduce the quantity of rockets fired at Israel and Israeli civilians.” Israeli FM Livni acknowledges that Israel has broader aims, stating that toppling Hamas is “a strategic Israeli objective,” but that it might take more than one large-scale military operation such as OCL to do the job.

Israeli actions: Before phase 2 begins in the evening, the IDF launches artillery strikes on some 40 targets concentrated in open areas around Bayt Hanun, east of Rafah, and along Gaza’s main north–south artery in an apparent effort to clear the areas of mines and tunnels, to move Palestinians away from those areas in preparation for the insertion of ground forces.

The IDF also continues air strikes and naval bombardments across Gaza. Target areas include Bayt Lahiya, Gaza City (al-Nasser, al-Rimal, al-Shuja‘iyya, al-Tuffah, al-Zaytun), Jabaliya, Juhur al-Dik, Khan Yunis, Khuza, al-Mughraqa, Nussayrat, Rafah, al-Shuka (e. of Rafah). Targets include 2 mosques in Bayt Lahiya and Jabaliya, killing at least 13 worshipers and injuring 30 during evening prayers; a car in Khan Yunis, assassinating senior Hamas military cmdr. Muhammad Ma‘aruf; 2 PA security compounds in Gaza City; the al-Aqsa Radio and the al-Risala newspaper offices in Gaza City; tunnels on the Rafah border; suspected rocket-launching sites and weapons depots. By evening, the Palestinian toll reaches at least 460 dead and more than 2,000 wounded.

At dusk, the IDF drops leaflets on n. Gaza warning residents that troops will soon operate in this area and that they should evacuate for their safety. Around 8:00 P.M. local time, the IDF cuts power to the Strip and begins sending ground forces into n. Gaza, taking up positions on the outskirts of Bayt Hanun and Bayt Lahiya (occupying homes as operational bases); securing areas e. of Gaza City nr. the Qarni crossing, but notably keeping a distance from Jabaliya (considered a Hamas stronghold), and just inside the s. Gaza border e. of Rafah (with tanks firing flechette shells at houses and agricultural areas, killing 1 Palestinian and wounding 7 inside their homes). Heavy gun battles are reported, with Hamas issuing a statement that it is firing mortars at IDF ground forces. After ground operations begin, the IDF announces a naval blockade of Gaza out to 20 nautical miles.

Palestinian actions: During the day, Palestinians fire 28 rockets and 7 mortars into Israel, hitting as far as Ashdod and Ashqelon to the n., and Netivot to the e., lightly damaging 3 homes and an apartment building, lightly injuring 2 Israelis.

Of note: Embedded with some IDF ground units are the first Israeli journalists and 2 foreign reporters (BBC and Reuters) allowed into Gaza since late 10/08. These journalists have been given “trusted” status by the government for their “long history of relations with the IDF” and are under the strict rules of the IDF censor; the general ban on foreign journalists is still in place, despite a 12/31 High Court ruling ordering the government to allow journalists access. (AFP, AP, BBC, IDF, IFM, ITV, Organization of the Islamic Conference [OIC] press release, REU, YA 1/3; HA, IFM, JAZ, JP, NYT, OCHA, WP, WT 1/4; NYT, UNOSAT, WP, WT 1/5; IFM, PCHR 1/8; HA 1/11; JP 1/22; JPI 2/6; Harpers 3/09)

Israel’s security cabinet authorizes the IDF to open phase 2 of OCL at its discretion by sending ground troops into Gaza “to destroy the terrorist infrastructure of the Hamas in the area of operation, while taking control of some of [sic] rocket launching area used by the Hamas”; authorizes the call-up of 10,000s of additional reservists. The IDF does not immediately take action.

Israeli action: The IDF continues air strikes and naval bombardment of Gaza, carrying out 65 air strikes and hitting 65 individual sites. Target areas include al-Atatra, Bayt Lahiya, Dahaniyya, Dayr al-Balah, Gaza City (Shaykh Ridwan, al-Shuja‘iyya, Tal al-Hawa, al-Yarmuk), Jabaliya, Khan Yunis, Nussayrat, Rafah, Tal al-Za‘atar. Primary targets include the homes of more than 12 senior Hamas officials (including senior IQB official Imad Akel, who reportedly is killed along with 3 children nearby; and Haniyeh’s chief of staff Muhammad Madhun and fmr. PA Refugee Affairs M Atif Udwan, who are believed to be in hiding); a car carrying Hamas’s Gaza City military cmdr. Muhammad (Abu Zakariya) al-Jamal, assassinating him; the Rafah airport site (already heavily damaged by yrs. of IDF attacks); the American International School in al-Atatra in n. Gaza; a public works dept. building southwest of Gaza City; tunnels on the Rafah border; and suspected weapons depots across Gaza. The estimated Palestinian toll reaches 431 killed, more than 2,200 injured.

Palestinian actions: Palestinians fire 26 rockets and 5 mortars into Israel, including 10 rockets that strike nr. Ashqelon, 1 of which causes damage and lightly injures 2 Israelis.

Humanitarian notes: The IDF escorts 226 foreigners who opt to leave Gaza to the Allenby Bridge crossing into Jordan; allows 64 truckloads of humanitarian goods into the Strip.

Of note: By this date, nearly all of Gaza’s police stations and government buildings have been destroyed. One senior Israeli security official states that “All of the offices and databases are gone. When all this is over, no civil servant will have an office to sit in.” (HA, IDF, IFM, ITV 1/2; AFP, AP, HA, IDF, Nation, NYT, REU, WP, WT, YA 1/3; Adalah 1/4; IFM, JP, PCHR 1/8; WT 1/22; JPI 1/23)

In the West Bank, the IDF fires rubber-coated steel bullets, percussion grenades, tear gas at Palestinian, Israeli, and international activists taking part in weekly nonviolent protests against the separation wall in Bil‘in (injuring 5 Palestinians), Ni‘lin (wounding 1 Israeli, 3 Palestinians), and Jayyus (injuring 3 Palestinians; 1 is hit with live ammunition). In Jerusalem, 100s of Palestinians clash with Israeli police after Friday prayers. Small demonstrations against OCL are reported in East Jerusalem and across the West Bank (including Bani Na‘im nr. Hebron, Bethlehem, Hebron, Issawiyya, Ramallah, Shu‘fat r.c.). IDF troops shoot at protesters in Bani Na‘im, wounding 5. The PASF breaks up large rallies against OCL in Hebron and Ramallah, firing tear gas at demonstrators, ripping up pro-Hamas placards and flags, beating and arresting suspected Hamas supporters, injuring at least 10 Palestinians. (HA, NYT, REU, WP, WT, YA 1/3; PCHR 1/8)

Overnight, Islamic Jihad mbrs. in Gaza fire more than a dozen rockets into Israel in retaliation for the IDF’s 12/15 assassination of Nawahda, causing no damage or injuries. The IDF makes 2 air strikes on Islamic Jihad mbrs. preparing to launch rockets nr. Bayt Hanun, injuring 3 Islamic Jihad mbrs., 1 bystander. OCHA reports that in recent days, Israel allowed 78 tons of chlorine and purification chemicals to be transferred to Gaza’s water authority, enough to treat Gaza’s water supply for 1 mo.; Gaza also received its 2d shipment (14 truckloads) of pharmaceutical supplies fr. the PA central pharmacy in Ramallah. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Bethlehem. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces bulldoze a tent and level land, displacing a Palestinian family whose home on the site they had bulldozed in 11/08. Inside Israel, some 200 Israeli police make an overnight raid on the Bedouin encampment of Abdallah al-Atrash in the Negev, which has existed for over 20 yrs., expelling 20 families and demolishing all structures. A Gaza court sentences Palestinian Muhammad Saidam, arrested in 2/08, to death for “treason, espionage, and collaborating” with Israel to assassinate mbrs. of the Palestinian resistance; PA pres. Abbas must approve the sentence before it can be carried out. (MM, OCHA 12/17; NYT, PCHR 12/18)

The IDF makes an air strike on Bayt Lahiya in a failed attempt to assassinate Islamic Jihad mbrs. Ihab Abu Jarad, Nidal Shaqqura, and Muhammad alZa’nin as they walk in a crowded residential area, wounding the 3, as well as 6 bystanders, including 2 children and a mentally disabled person; bulldozes land on the Palestinian side of the Qarni industrial zone (for a 2d day), nr. the border fence e. of Dayr al-Balah. Late at night, the IDF sends troops into Bayt Hanun, raiding a home and arresting 7 mbrs. of a Palestinian family. An IDF special forces unit attempts an incursion into al-Bureij r.c. but is forced to retreat by Palestinian gunmen firing machine guns and mortars; no injuries are reported. Egyptian border police find separate caches of 40 landmines, 500 kg of explosives nr. the Rafah border. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus, in Bethlehem and Jenin town and r.c., and nr. Hebron, Tubas, Tulkarm. (OCHA, PCHR 3/19; PCHR 3/27)

Hamas’s Haniyeh publicly offersIsrael a comprehensive cease-fire deal covering the West Bank and Gaza in exchange for a lifting of the siege of Gaza and a halt to all Israeli “assassinations, killings, and raids.” The Israeli government does not officially reply, but hrs. later in the West Bank, IDF undercover units in Bethlehem ambush, assassinate Islamic Jihad’s Bethlehem cmdr. Muhammad Shihada, senior AMB mbr. Ahmad Balbul), and 2 Islamic Jihad mbrs. driving with them. The IDF also sends troops into Sa‘ida village nr. Tulkarm in search of Islamic Jihad’s Tulkarm cmdr. Salih Karouir, wounding him in an exchange of fire and then shooting him in the head execution style. In an “initial response,” Islamic Jihad mbrs. in Gaza resume rocket fire into Israel, damaging 1 building. The IDF also conducts house searches nr. Hebron, firing on stone-throwing Palestinian youths who confront them, wounding 2; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Hebron, Nablus, Tulkarm, as well as in Qabatya, Qalqilya, and nr. Bethlehem, Jenin. In Gaza, 1 Palestinian is killed, 5 are injured when a smuggling tunnel they are renovating collapses; 1 Palestinian is killed when explosives he is handling detonate prematurely. (BBC, IFM 3/12; NYT, PCHR, WT 3/13; OCHA, PCHR 3/19)

IDF troops encamped in the Erez industrial zone since 11/23 fire on local Palestinians who stray nr. the zone, wounding 1. Palestinians fire 4 mortars fr. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or injuries. The IDF responds with tank fire, wounding 4 armed Palestinians, 2 bystanders. In the West Bank, the IDF sends undercover units into Tulkarm r.c. to ambush a car carrying wanted AMB mbrs. Muhammad Qawzah and Mushir Mansouri, mortally wounding Qawzah (he subsequently bleeds to death over an hr.), wounding Mansouri; conducts arrest raids in and around Nablus, nr. Ramallah (ambushing and detaining Birzeit University student council pres. Fadi Hamad). Jewish settlers fr. Beit Hadasah in Hebron vandalize a nearby Palestinian school, breaking windows, breaking down walls, attempting to set fire to the building, uprooting trees outside; settlers have previously tried to occupy the school to establish a new outpost. (NYT 11/26; OCHA 11/28; PCHR 11/29)

The IDF shells a car driving nr. al-Bureij r.c., assassinating 2 ESF officers (Muhammad Abu ‘Arab, Ali Baroud) and 4 Hamas mbrs. (Ismail Abu Abda, ‘Abid Abu Hilu, Ahmad al-Qrainawi, Muhammad al-Qrainawi), wounding 1 bystander; sends troops into Abasan nr. Khan Yunis, bulldozing land, firing on residential areas, wounding 1 Palestinian. An Islamic Jihad mbr. is injured when explosives he is handling detonate prematurely. Gaza’s sole power plant, which produces 25% of Gaza’s electricity, shuts down after depleting its fuel reserves (see 8/19; 70% of Gaza’s electricity is provided by Israel, 5% by Egypt). In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus and nr. Bethlehem, Hebron, Jenin, Ramallah, Tulkarm; fires on stone-throwing Palestinian youths outside ‘Ayn Bayt al-Ma’a r.c., wounding 2; later patrols in ‘Ayn Bayt al-Ma’a, exchanging fire with local gunmen, killing 1 armed Palestinian. (HA, NYT 8/21; OCHA, WP 8/22; PCHR 8/23)

In Gaza, Palestinians fire 3 mortars at IDF bulldozers clearing Palestinian land on the Gaza side of the Erez crossing, causing no damage or injuries. The IDF bulldozes Palestinian land nr. the Qarni crossing, along the border e. of Dayr al-Balah. Late in the evening, the IDF raids Jenin r.c. in a failed attempt to capture West Bank AMB leader Zakariya Zubaydi, fatally shooting Muhammad Hayja (his deputy and a local AMB leader). The IDF also conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus, nr. Hebron, and in Qalqilya, Tubas. (NYT, WP 7/2; OCHA 7/4; PCHR 7/5)

The IDF makes 7 air strikes on Hamas and Islamic Jihad targets in Gaza, assassinating 3 senior Islamic Jihad cmdrs. (Raed Ghannam, Ziyad Ghannam, Muhammad al-Ra‘i) and wounding 7 bystanders in a strike on a car in Khan Yunis, killing another 4 Palestinians and wounding 2 in a strike on an alleged weapons depot in al-Maghazi r.c., and striking the same site later in the day, heavily damaging 6 nearby homes, wounding 1 bystander. Palestinians fire several rockets fr. Gaza into Israel, lightly injuring 1 Israeli, damaging 1 home and 2 other buildings. In Bureij r.c., a Hamas mbr. is injured when explosives he is handling detonate prematurely. (NYT, WP, WT 7/1; OCHA 7/4; PCHR 7/5)

Hamas presses its offensive in Gaza, taking over all PA ministry offices in Gaza City, securing control of Rafah, forcing PSF officers to surrender their Gaza City headquarters (after destroying all equipment, computers, archives; eye-witness reports say Hamas mbrs. summarily execute at least 7 PSF mbrs.) and other main security compounds; capturing and executing Fatah’s n. Gaza cmdr. Samih al-Madhun. At least 27 Palestinians are killed (14 of them in the fight for the PSF headquarters), 70 wounded in fighting during the day. Nearly 100 senior Fatah security and admin. officials flee Gaza for Egypt by boat (Egypt has already returned the 40 PA presidential guards who fled on 6/13). At the same time, the IDF occupies hills outside Bayt Lahiya to prevent rocket fire into Israel. With Gaza under almost complete Hamas control, Abbas declares a state of emergency, fires Haniyeh, and dissolves the national unity government. He also for the first time orders PA/Fatah forces to take offensive action against Hamas. Late in the evening, Hamas gains control of Abbas’s Gaza City offices, the only remaining Gaza institution still in the hands of Fatah/the PA. In the West Bank, PA forces under Abbas’s control begin rounding up 10s of Hamas mbrs. In and around Nablus and in Jenin, Tulkarm, masked AMB mbrs. raid offices affiliated with Hamas, Change and Reform, looting and sometimes setting fire to them, exchanging fire with Hamas mbrs., leaving at least 13 Palestinians injured. The AMB also abducts 5 Hamas mbrs. in Jenin. Meanwhile, Abbas’s national security adviser Muhammad Dahlan (the U.S. and Israel’s hope for restoring order to Gaza) returns from an extended stay in Egypt, where he underwent minor surgery, going to Ramallah instead of Gaza to confer with Abbas. Meanwhile, the IDF sends an undercover unit into Saida nr. Tulkarm, driving a car with Palestinian license plates, assassinating wanted AMB mbr. Muhammad Twair in a driveby shooting, also wounding 2 bystanders; sends patrols in Ithna nr. Hebron, Kafr Dan and Kafr Ra’i nr. Jenin, firing on residential areas and on stone-throwing youths who confront them, seriously wounding 1 Palestinian. Jewish settlers burn 10s of olive trees nr. Tulkarm; the IDF bars firefighters fr. reaching the scene. In Gaza, 5 Palestinian children (ages 10–15) are killed and 4 (ages 9–16) are wounded by IDF UXO nr. Shuka while collecting scrap metal; the 8 children are from 3 families: 2 Mansour boys are killed, 2 Hessi boys are killed, and 1 Barbakh boy is killed and 4 are wounded. (AFP, Jerusalem Post, MENA, MNA 6/14 in WNC 6/15; AP, BBC, NYT, WP, WT 6/15; WP 6/18; PCHR 6/21)

In Gaza, Hamas fires mortars at the IDF post at Erez crossing, wounding 4 IDF soldiers. In the West Bank, the IDF raids Jenin, exchanging fire with Palestinian gunmen, killing Muhammad Farhati, cmdr. of a joint AMB–Islamic Jihad squad called Belt of Fire; conducts additional arrest raids, house searches in Jenin and nr. Bethlehem, Tulkarm; bars members of the Temporary International Presence in Hebron (TIPH) fr. patrolling nr. the Ibrahimi Mosque/Tomb of the Patriarchs. In Gaza, a Haniyeh bodyguard is kidnapped by Fatah’s elite Force 17 mbrs., who hold him for 7 hrs., beat him, shave off his eyebrows and beard, shave the number 17 into his hair. In Gaza City, 50 PA TV employees protest threats by a little-known group, Swords of Truth, to its female anchors accused of “destroying Islamic culture” by appearing on broadcasts unveiled and wearing makeup. (WT 6/3; NYT 6/4; OCHA 6/6; PCHR 6/7; NYT 6/9)

Exchanges of fire intensify btwn. the Lebanese army, FI at Nahr al-Barid r.c. In ‘Ayn al-Hilwa r.c. nr. Sidon, Jund al-Sham mbrs. attack soldiers surrounding the camp after hearing news of the death of its senior mbr., Abu Raid, in Nahr al-Barid; 1 soldier, 2 Jund al-Sham mbrs. are wounded in the fighting, which involves heavy machine gun, automatic weapon, and RPG fire. (NYT, WP, WT 6/4; WT 6/5)

The IDF makes an air strike on a rocketlaunching site in n. Gaza, killing 1 Palestinian. In the West Bank, the IDF sends undercover units into Jenin, where they ambush, fatally shoot AMB mbrs. Muhammad al-Dumaj and Ahmad al-Issa, Islamic Jihad mbr. Mahmud Ghalail in an apparent assassination; sends undercover units into Nablus, fatally shooting 2 wanted AMB mbrs. in an exchange of gunfire, also heavily damaging a Palestinian home; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Bethlehem, in Jenin r.c. (firing on residential areas, fatally shooting a 17-yr.-old Palestinian girl inside her home), nr. Jenin (fatally shooting a Palestinian bystander who steps out on his roof to observe operations). In Gaza, the Army of Islam claims responsibility for a bombing at the American International School in n. Gaza; no injuries are reported. Unidentified gunmen shoot, wound an ESF mbr. nr. Nussayrat r.c. Unidentified assailants throw a hand grenade at a PA General Intelligence vehicle in Gaza City, missing the vehicle and causing no damage or injuries. (WP 4/22; MM 4/24; OCHA 4/25; PCHR 4/26; NYT 5/10)