388 / 14551 Results
  • February 2, 2022

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers with military escort raided Joseph’s Tomb in Nablus, leading to a confrontation with Palestinians protesting the incursion; no injuries were reported. Israeli...

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  • October 14, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers uprooted some 80 olive trees in al-Mughayyir. 1 Palestinian man hit 1 Israeli soldier with his car at the Qalandia checkpoint, injuring the soldier. According to...

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  • August 6, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers uprooted olive trees in Jaba‘. Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinian protesters near the Evyatar settlement outpost near Beita, killing 1 Palestinian...

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  • July 20, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces sealed off Ya‘bad, preventing Palestinians from entering and leaving the town. In East Jerusalem, Wafa reported that 100,000 Palestinians attended prayers...

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  • February 12, 2020

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces handed demolition notices for 4 Palestinian-owned homes in al-Tuwani south of Hebron; delivered notices for land seizures near Bethlehem; and confiscated 2...

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  • August 28, 2019

    In the West Bank, 10 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in and around Bethlehem, Ramallah, Salfit, and Tulkarm. Israeli forces also raided Beitunia in Area A, seizing footage from...

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  • December 19, 2018

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces raze an area of Palestinian farmland near Nablus. IDF troops arrest 6 Palestinians during late-night raids near Hebron and Ramallah; and patrol near Nablus and...

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  • December 17, 2018

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces carry out the punitive demolition of part of the Tulkarm-area home of a Palestinian suspected of shooting and killing 2 Israeli settlers on 10/7 (IDF troops shot...

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  • December 4, 2018

    IDF troops shoot and kill a Palestinian amid clashes sparked by an overnight arrest raid in Tulkarm (a video of the incident will circulate later in the week showing that Israeli soldiers shot the...

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  • August 30, 2017

    In the West Bank, IDF troops arrest 7 Palestinians during late-night raids in and around Nablus and Jenin, and patrol near Hebron. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces arrest 2 Palestinians during a...

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  • October 5, 2014

    In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in al-Fawar r.c. nr. Hebron during the day. (PCHR 10/16)

    Israeli FM Avigdor Lieberman says that Sweden’s amb. to Israel will be summoned for a reprimand,...

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  • December 30, 2013

    In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in Tulkarm in the morning, and in 2 villages nr. Jenin at night; patrols in 2 villages nr. Jenin in the morning, and in 2...

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  • December 15, 2013

    In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops open fire on Palestinian farmers working close to the border fence nr. Bayt Lahiya, wounding 1. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in...

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  • June 12, 2013

    In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops conduct a limited incursion nr. al-Bureij r.c. and level land close to the border fence. In the West Bank, the IDF demolish 2 homes and a sheep barn in Barta‘a, a...

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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 7, 2013

    IDF general and head of Central Command Nitzan Alon approves 2 settlement outposts nr. Nablus by combining them into 1 settlement named Rechalim. (PCHR 1/10)

    In the West Bank, IDF troops...

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  • November 22, 2012

    Israeli leaders defend the 11/21 Gaza cease-fire in the face of strong criticism from politicians like Yesh Atid’s Yair Lapid and Kadima’s Shaul Mofaz, who believe that the operation had not...

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  • October 22, 2012

    Senior IDF commander Col. Amir Baram tells Israeli television that the army may soon need to enter the Gaza Strip, potentially going ‘‘house to house,’’ in order to ‘‘maintain deterrence.’’ (ToI...

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  • June 19, 2012

    Israeli pres. Shimon Peres says he has met with Palestinian pres. Mahmud Abbas and other Palestinian officials several times in recent months to discuss resuming peace talks. The Palestinians do...

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  • March 30, 2012

    Weekly Palestinian protests against the separation wall, land confiscations, and settlement expansion this week coincide with Land Day, the annual event to protest Israel’s discriminatory land...

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  • December 29, 2009

    Some 1,000 international activists gather in Egypt in preparation for a 12/31 solidarity march to the Rafah border to mark the 1-yr. anniversary of Operation Cast Lead (OCL) and bring tens of...

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  • August 18, 2009

    In the West Bank, the IDF detains 3 shop owners and demolishes their auto repair shops in Qalqilya, destroying equipment within and causing substantial losses. (PCHR 8/20)

    The Israeli...

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  • January 8, 2009

    The UNSC passes (14–0, with the U.S. abstaining) res. 1860, calling for an “immediate, durable, and fully respected cease-fire, leading to the full withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza” but not...

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  • May 12, 2008

    Islamic Jihad mbrs. fire a rocket fr. Gaza into Israel, killing an Israeli. In the West Bank, the IDF sends undercover units in cars with Palestinian license plates into Bayt Eiba nr. Nablus,...

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  • September 3, 2007

    Islamic Jihad fires 7 rockets fr. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or injuries although 1 lands nr. a daycare center and school, causing panic; public and government officials call for...

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  • September 2, 2007

    In Gaza, the IDF makes an air strike targeting a car in n. Gaza carrying 3 Islamic Jihad mbrs. allegedly coming fr. a rocket-launching site, hitting the car after the men escape; sends troops into...

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  • August 24, 2007

    In Gaza, the IDF fatally shoots 2 armed Palestinians on the border nr. Jabaliya; sends troops into al-Shuka nr. Rafah to bulldoze 6 d. of agricultural land nr. the Gaza airport; bulldozes...

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  • July 28, 2007

    The IDF fires into Gaza, wounding 2 AMB mbrs. planting roadside bombs and preparing to fire mortars into Israel, barring ambulances fr. reaching the scene for 6 hrs., allowing them to die; the AMB...

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  • July 12, 2007

    Under intense pressure from human and legal rights groups, Abbas temporarily suspends a 7/6 presidential decree expanding the mandate of the PA security forces at the expense of the judiciary....

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  • July 11, 2007

    In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus, nr. Hebron, and in Jenin town and r.c., Qabatya, Qalqilya. In Ramallah, Fataha-ffiliated students at Birzeit...

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In the West Bank, Israeli settlers with military escort raided Joseph’s Tomb in Nablus, leading to a confrontation with Palestinians protesting the incursion; no injuries were reported. Israeli settlers also attacked Palestinian farmers with pepper spray east of Hebron. Israeli forces delivered stop-work orders for 1 mosque, 3 houses, and 1 commercial structure in Marda. Israeli forces also forced Palestinian business owners to close their shops in Huwwara, claiming that stones had been thrown at Israeli settlers near the shops. Elsewhere, Israeli forces demolished 4 water wells in Khallet al-Dabe. Israeli forces also demolished 1 commercial structure in ‘Anata. Israeli military said that shots were fired from a car at Israeli soldiers near Nablus; no injuries were reported. 13 Palestinians were arrested, including 10 during late-night raids in Dahariya, Za‘atra, Silwad, and Zeita; 3 were arrested at checkpoints near Bethlehem and Nablus. (TOI, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 2/2; MEMO, MEMO, PCHR 2/3)

Haaretz reported that Israeli attorney general Avichai Mendelblit authorized establishing an Israeli settlement on the evacuated Evyatar settlement outpost near Beita. Attorney General Mendelblit is leaving office this week. Palestinians have held weekly protests at the site since the outpost was erected in May 2021. The outpost was evacuated in June 2021, but the houses erected remained as the settlers struck a deal with the Israeli government that they could move back if Israel deemed that the land is state-owned. Israeli defense minister Benny Gantz will have to declare the area state-owned, after which there will be a 45-day period to file objections. Several Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces in the past year while protesting the outpost. In a letter from Israeli foreign minister Yair Lapid to Israeli prime minister Naftali Bennett, Lapid warned that if the Israeli government legalized the Evyatar settlement outpost, it “could have serious diplomatic consequences and damage foreign relations, first and foremost from the United States,” saying that the U.S. has already made this clear to him. Labor and Meretz publicly opposed legalizing the settlement outpost. (AP, HA, IN 2/2; HA, JP, MEE, TOI, TOI, TOI 2/3; HA, HA, HA 2/4; UNOCHA 2/11)

The Shin Bet admitted to having threatened random Palestinians in Israel that it would “settle the score” if they had participated in protests related to the May 2021 uprising in Israel that coincided with Israeli attacks on Gaza and eviction threats against Palestinians in Sheikh Jarrah. (HA, MEE 2/3)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas met with Amnesty International’s secretary-general Agnès Callamard in Ramallah, discussing the report Amnesty released on 2/1 that charged Israel with the crime of apartheid. (WAFA 2/2)

Defense Minister Benny Gantz said, at a conference in Tel Aviv, that the Israeli military on 4 occasions had offered assistance to Lebanon. According to Gantz, the offers were made to strengthen the Lebanese army in facing “the strengthening of Hezbollah under Iran’s support.” Israeli military sources later denied that Israel had made such offers and that Israel had only offered humanitarian aid following the explosion in the Beirut port. (HA 2/2; MEMO 2/3)

Israel, Oman, and Saudi Arabia all took part in the International Maritime Exercise 2022, led by the U.S. and with the participation of nearly 60 countries. It was the 1st time that Saudi Arabia and Oman partook in a naval exercise with Israel, which they have no formal relations with. (AJ, ALM 2/2)

The FBI confirmed reporting from the New York Times published on 1/28 that the agency had bought the NSO Group’s Pegasus spyware, but claimed to never have used it. The FBI further stated that it had bought the spyware for “product testing and evaluation.” (ALM, AP, HA, REU 2/2; MEMO 2/3)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers uprooted some 80 olive trees in al-Mughayyir. 1 Palestinian man hit 1 Israeli soldier with his car at the Qalandia checkpoint, injuring the soldier. According to Israeli authorities, the man intentionally rammed the soldier. Both were admitted to hospitals. Israeli forces shot and killed 1 Palestinian minor and injured 1 other, claiming the 2 were throwing Molotov cocktails at cars driving near Bayt Jala. Israeli forces also delivered notifications to Palestinians in Yasuf that Israel will seize 40 dunams (9.9 acres) of land from residents to expand the Taffouh settlement. Elsewhere, Israeli forces seized and demolished structures used for agricultural and residential purposes in the Bedouin community of Qabbon. 17 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Beit Kahel, Beit ‘Anin, Biddu, Beit Sahour, and al-Arroub refugee camp. In East Jerusalem, 3 were arrested during house raids in the Old City. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Gaza. (AP, HA, HA, MEMO, REU, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 10/14; MEE 10/15; AJ 10/17; PCHR 10/21)

The PA wrote a letter to the African Union’s Executive Council urging it to revoke Israel’s observer status, which it was given on 7/22 to the dismay of many of the Union’s members. (ALM, MEE, MEMO, WAFA 10/14)

In Lebanon, 6 protesters were killed and dozens injured in clashes during a demonstration against the judge presiding over the probe into the blast that killed more than 200 people on 8/7/2020. The demonstration was supported by Hezbollah; Amal movement supporters clashed with the Christian Lebanese Forces after being shot at during the protest. The Christian Lebanese Forces said Hezbollah had incited the violence. Videos showed heavily armed people in civilian clothes firing weapons and 1 man in civilian clothes firing an RPG. The U.S. subsequently offered the Lebanese army $67 million in military aid. (AP 10/13; AJ, AJ, AP, HA, MEMO, REU, REU, REU 10/14; AJ, AP, HA, MEMO, REU 10/15; HA, REU, REU 10/16; REU 10/17; AJ, REU 10/18)

Israel’s defense minister Benny Gantz called on the Israeli military to “systematically, aggressively and uncompromisingly” act against settlers who are violent toward Palestinians or Israeli forces, as an uptick in Israeli settler violence had been recorded. (AP 10/15; AJ 10/17)

The U.S. Biden administration formally rejoined the UN Human Rights Council after the Trump administration left the council in 2018, citing anti-Israel bias. U.S. state department spokesperson Ned Price said that the U.S. would “vigorously oppose the council’s disproportionate attention on Israel.” (NYT 10/14; WAFA 10/16)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers uprooted olive trees in Jaba‘. Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinian protesters near the Evyatar settlement outpost near Beita, killing 1 Palestinian and injuring 21 others with live ammunition and rubber-coated bullets; others suffered tear-gas related injuries. The killing of the Palestinian man, who was said to have been drinking water when he was shot in the chest, was the 40th by Israeli forces in the West Bank since May. Israeli forces also violently dispersed Palestinian protesters in Kafr Qaddum, injuring 4 with rubber-coated bullets and others with tear gas. 1 Palestinian was arrested at a flying checkpoint near Beit Fajjar. In East Jerusalem, 1 Palestinian family started demolishing their own homes in Bayt Hanina, displacing 46 people. In Gaza, incendiary balloons sent from Gaza caused fires in Israel, and Israel struck targets in Jabalia refugee camp, causing damage. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen west of Jabalia refugee camp on 2 separate occasions; no injuries were reported. In the Golan Heights, 19 rockets were fired at the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights from Lebanon, with 3 falling within Lebanon and the rest in the Golan Heights; no damage was reported. Israel subsequently fired at Lebanon; no damage was reported. Hezbollah took responsibility for the rockets fired from Lebanon and the Lebanese army said it had arrested 4 suspects. Israel said that it does not believe that Hezbollah is seeking an escalation. (AA, AJ, AJ, AX, HA, HA, HA, MEE, MEMO, MEMO, REU, REU, REU, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 8/6; AA, AJ, AJ, HA, MEMO, MEMO, REU, WAFA, WAFA 8/7; HA 8/8; HA, HA, PCHR 8/12; AJ 8/15)

Hamas accepted an Israel and U.S. demand to allow the 2 countries to examine a list of families in Gaza that would receive a monthly stipend from Qatar, allegedly in order to ensure that the people on the list are not Hamas activists. Sources told Haaretz that Hamas was pressured to accept the demand by Palestinian banks, which would be exposed to sanctions if the stipends reached members of Hamas or other militants. (HA 8/6)

Hamas political leader Ismail Haniyeh met with the new Iranian president Ebrahim Raisi in Tehran. (HA 8/6; AA 8/7)

Israeli prime minister Naftali Bennett announced that Michael Herzog, the brother of Israeli president Isaac Herzog, will be Israel’s new ambassador to the U.S. (AA, ALM, HA, MEMO 8/6; HA 8/7; HA 8/8; ALM 8/9; ALM 8/10)

In the West Bank, Israeli forces sealed off Ya‘bad, preventing Palestinians from entering and leaving the town. In East Jerusalem, Wafa reported that 100,000 Palestinians attended prayers at the Haram al-Sharif compound for the Eid al-Adha Maghrib (sunset) prayer. 3 Palestinians were arrested during raids in Silwan and al-Tur. In Gaza, Israeli forces made incursions to level land east of Rafah. In Israel, 2 rockets were fired at Israel from Lebanon hours after Israeli forces attacked south of Aleppo in Syria on 7/19; there were no reports of damage or casualties. The Lebanese army said it had located 3 improvised rocket launchers on a beach near Tyre and neutralized them. Israel subsequently fired 12 artillery shells at the Wadi Hammoul area in Lebanon, causing neither damage nor injuries. (AJ, AP, HA, HA, HA, JP, REU, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 7/20; PCHR 7/29)

Chairman of former president Donald Trump’s inaugural committee Tom Barrack was arrested for not disclosing that he was a foreign agent paid by the UAE. During the Trump administration, Barrack tried to get a senior position so that he could further the UAE’s interest in the U.S. government. Barrack remained an informal advisor to several U.S. officials during the Trump administration. (AJ, AP 7/20; MEMO 7/21)

In the West Bank, Israeli forces handed demolition notices for 4 Palestinian-owned homes in al-Tuwani south of Hebron; delivered notices for land seizures near Bethlehem; and confiscated 2 residential tents near Nablus. Elsewhere, Israeli forces set up roadblocks on roads to several villages north of Ramallah. 6 Palestinians were arrested, including 5 during raids in and around Ramallah, Hebron, and Kafr Qaddum; 1 was arrested at a checkpoint near Jenin. During a raid in Ramallah, Israeli forces seized a vehicle. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire on Palestinian farmland east of Khan Yunis; no injuries were reported. In Israel, 1 Palestinian was arrested for working without a work permit. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 2/12; PCHR 2/13)

The Lebanese army opened fire at Israeli drones flying over Lebanese territory, causing the Israeli drones to vacate Lebanese air space. (HA 2/12)

The UN Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner released the UN database of companies with ties to Israeli settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. The long-awaited list included 112 business, 94 in Israel and 18 in 6 other countries. Among the companies are Airbnb, Booking.com, Expedia, Motorola Solutions, and Tripadvisor. (HA, OHCHR (see A/HRC/43/71), REU, WAFA, WAFA 2/12)

Japan announced that it was providing $33 million in aid to Palestinians via a number of UN institutions and through the International Committee of the Red Cross. (WAFA 2/12)

In the West Bank, 10 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in and around Bethlehem, Ramallah, Salfit, and Tulkarm. Israeli forces also raided Beitunia in Area A, seizing footage from surveillance cameras; the raid led to clashes with local residents. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces clashed with local residents and Israeli activists after raiding Issawiyya. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire on Palestinian fishermen 2 nautical miles offshore from Bayt Lahiya. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 8/28; HA, PCHR 8/29)

The Lebanese army opened fire on 3 Israeli drones in Lebanese airspace. All 3 drones returned to Israel after being fired at. (HA 8/28)

In the West Bank, Israeli forces raze an area of Palestinian farmland near Nablus. IDF troops arrest 6 Palestinians during late-night raids near Hebron and Ramallah; and patrol near Nablus and Hebron. Israeli settlers assault and injure several Palestinian farmers working their lands near Hebron. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces arrest 3 Palestinians during late-night raids in Hizma and Issawiyya. Along Gaza’s border, IDF troops open fire on Palestinian shepherds working near Dayr al-Balah, causing no injuries. Israeli forces also conduct a limited incursion to level land near al-Bureij refugee camp. (MNA, MNA, WAFA 12/19; PCHR 12/20)

The undersecretary of the PA’s Agriculture Ministry, Abdallah Lahlouh, says that the PA has not been officially informed of any new Israeli policy to ban imports of fruits and vegetables from the West Bank, but that the PA will respond in kind if the recent reports of a ban continue. Although it was not publically announced at the time, Israel’s Agriculture Minister Uri Ariel ordered such a ban on 12/17 after the PA barred Palestinian meat-sellers from buying lamb from Israel on 12/2. (TOI, TOI, WAFA 12/19)

Israel’s Knesset passes a first reading of a bill that would allow the IDF to order the expulsion of the families of Palestinian assailants from their homes, despite objections from Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit and senior IDF officers. The Knesset also passes a first reading of the so-called Young Settlement Bill, which would allow for the temporary retroactive authorization of certain settlement outposts in the West Bank and which the Israeli cabinet unanimously approved on 12/16. (HA 12/19; HA 12/20)

At a UN Security Council meeting on alleged violations of Resolution 1701, Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon presents new information that he claims shows the extent of Hezbollah’s tunneling operations along the Israel-Lebanon border. He also says that Israel “gave UNIFIL precise information about the location of [1 of the tunnels],” but that compromised Lebanese army officers leaked the information to Hezbollah, allowing the group to conceal certain offensive operations. “Lebanese army officials are working for Hezbollah, while UNIFIL is not working to fulfill its mandate in the region in the necessary manner,” Danon alleges. While several UNSC members condemn Hezbollah’s tunneling activities, the UNSC takes no action at today’s meeting. (HA, HA, TOI, YA 12/19; TOI 12/20)

UN World Food Programme (WFP) country director Stephen Kearney announces that funding shortfalls have forced “drastic” cuts to food aid initiatives planned in the West Bank and Gaza in 2019. Starting on 1/1/19, the WFP plans to suspend food assistance to 27,000 people in the West Bank and reduce by 20% the food aid delivered to 166,000 additional recipients across the occupied Palestinian territories. “The major donor that we have had in the past years has been the U.S.,” Kearney says. “They have cut funding, not just to UNRWA, who work with the refugees in Gaza, but also to the rest of the humanitarian community, including WFP.” A WFP spokesperson says that an additional $57 million would be needed to maintain the current level of food aid in 2019. (AFP, AJ, REU, TOI 12/19; MEE 12/20)

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) announces that it has filed a legal challenge to an anti-BDS law in Texas on behalf of 4 Texans who either lost their jobs or lost the opportunity to be hired after they refused to renounce their support for boycotts against Israel or its settlements in the West Bank. “Whatever you may think about boycotts of Israel, the bottom line is that political boycotts are a legitimate form of nonviolent protest,” says an ACLU lawyer. “The state cannot use the contracting process as an ideological litmus test or to tell people what kind of causes they may or may not support.” Texas’s anti-BDS law, which requires all state contractors to certify that they do not support or participate in any boycotts of Israel or its West Bank settlements, has been on the books since 5/2/17. (HA, TOI 12/19)

In the West Bank, Israeli forces carry out the punitive demolition of part of the Tulkarm-area home of a Palestinian suspected of shooting and killing 2 Israeli settlers on 10/7 (IDF troops shot and killed the suspect during an arrest raid on 12/12). The demolition sparks clashes with Palestinian residents of the area; 3 Palestinians are arrested and 6 are injured. Separately, IDF troops arrest 20 Palestinians during raids near Ramallah, Hebron, Bethlehem, and Jenin; and patrol near Hebron throughout the day. Israeli settlers assault and severely injure a Palestinian after they force him out of his car outside Bethlehem. In the evening, hundreds of Palestinians gather along Gaza’s northern border to continue the Great March of Return and to cheer on 20 Palestinian boats sailing in a symbolic challenge to the Israeli blockade. IDF troops and Israeli naval forces violently disperse the demonstrations; 22 Palestinians are injured. Also off Gaza’s coast, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats near Jabaliya refugee camp and Khan Yunis, causing no damage or injuries. (MNA, MNA, TOI, WAFA, WAFA 12/17; EI, MNA, MNA 12/18; PCHR 12/20)

In response to the PA’s ban on Palestinian purchases of lamb from Israel on 12/2, Israel’s Agriculture Minister Uri Ariel imposes a ban on Palestinian fruit and vegetable imports. Ariel neglects to announce the ban to the public. Palestinian farmers export between 280 and 300 tons of produce to Israel per day, and the ban is expected to cost the Palestinian economy approximately NIS 1 million (approximately $265,545) per day. (JP 12/19; TOI 12/27)

After the IDF announced the discovery of a 4th Hezbollah-built cross-border tunnel on 12/16, UNIFIL states that 2 of the 4 were built in violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1701, which ended the 2006 Israel-Lebanon war. “UNIFIL has requested the Lebanese authorities to ensure urgent follow-up actions in accordance with the responsibilities of the Government of Lebanon pursuant to resolution 1701,” a UNIFIL statement reads. Earlier in the day, the Lebanese Armed Forces go on high alert after several Lebanese soldiers confront IDF troops installing barbed wire along the border near Mays al-Jabal village. UNIFIL forces are deployed to the scene to defuse the situation and prevent misunderstandings, according to a UNIFIL spokesperson. (AP, HA, TOI, TOI 12/17)

IDF troops shoot and kill a Palestinian amid clashes sparked by an overnight arrest raid in Tulkarm (a video of the incident will circulate later in the week showing that Israeli soldiers shot the man in the back). Elsewhere in the West Bank, Israeli forces demolish 5 Palestinian commercial buildings in Haris village near Salfit. IDF troops arrest 10 Palestinians and issue 1 arrest summons during late-night raids near Bethlehem, Salfit, Ramallah, Tulkarm, Jerusalem, and Tubas; and patrol near Bethlehem and Hebron. Israeli forces demolish 4 Palestinian makeshift commercial structures outside Haris village near Salfit. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces demolish a Palestinian home under construction in Jabal Mukabir, another in Sur Bahir, and 2 small commercial facilities in Bayt Hanina. A Palestinian demolishes his own small parking garage in Silwan to avoid paying Israeli demolition fees. Along Gaza’s border, Israeli forces conduct a limited incursion to level land near Bayt Hanun. They also open fire on a Hamas border security post near Dayr al-Balah, causing no damage or injuries. (HA, JP, MNA, MNA, MNA, MNA, MNA, TOI, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 12/4; PCHR 12/6)

Hours after the IDF announces that it yesterday launched Operation Northern Shield to uncover and demolish “attack” tunnels built by Hezbollah and leading into northern Israel, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu says there has already been “operational successes” in the operation. “Whoever tries to harm the State of Israel will pay a heavy price,” he says. “We will continue with further actions—public and clandestine—in order to safeguard the security of Israel.” IDF officers predict it will likely take several weeks to locate and demolish all of the tunnels. Meanwhile, Lebanese president Michel Aoun calls on the Lebanese army to “closely monitor” the IDF activity along the border. (MEMO, HA, HA, HA, JP, JP, TOI 12/4; HA, MNA, MNA 12/5)

In the West Bank, IDF troops arrest 7 Palestinians during late-night raids in and around Nablus and Jenin, and patrol near Hebron. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces arrest 2 Palestinians during a raid in Issawiyya. (MNA, TOI, WAFA 8/31; HA 9/1; PCHR 9/14)

On a tour of the Israel-Gaza border, U.S. special representative Jason Greenblatt says it is necessary for the PA to resume control of Gaza: “It is clear that the PA needs to resume its role in the administration of Gaza, as Hamas has substantially harmed the people of Gaza and has failed to meet their most basic needs.” (HA, MNA 8/31; HA 9/1)

The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) renews the UN Interim Force in Lebanon’s (UNIFIL) peacekeeping mission, and, addressing U.S. and Israeli complaints, approves new language authorizing more joint border patrols with Lebanese armed forces, and requiring “prompt and detailed” reports whenever UNIFIL troops encounter Hezbollah roadblocks. Israel’s ambassador to the UN Danny Danon welcomes the decision as a “victory for Israel.” (NYT 8/30; TOI 8/31; HA, TOI 9/5)

In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in al-Fawar r.c. nr. Hebron during the day. (PCHR 10/16)

Israeli FM Avigdor Lieberman says that Sweden’s amb. to Israel will be summoned for a reprimand, following the Swedish PM’s announcement on 10/3 that his govt. intends to recognize the state of Palestine. (HA, YA 10/5)

Israeli soldiers shoot and wound a Lebanese soldier across the border nr. Shaba‘ Farms. The Israeli army says its troops targeted suspects crossing the border, while the Lebanese army says an army outpost came under fire. The United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) condemns the incident and urges restraint. (AFP, UNIFIL, YA 10/5)

In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in Tulkarm in the morning, and in 2 villages nr. Jenin at night; patrols in 2 villages nr. Jenin in the morning, and in 2 villages nr. Hebron and 1 village nr. Tulkarm at night. (PCHR 1/2)

Israel releases 26 Palestinian prisoners, the 3rd such group freed in conjunction with understandings reached at the onset of the peace negotiations broached in 7/2013. Three return home to the Gaza Strip, 5 to East Jerusalem, and 18 go home to the West Bank. There are official welcomes for the returning prisoners in both the Gaza Strip and Ramallah. In a separate development, Palestinian chief negotiator Erakat says that the peace talks have proved a failure, “foiled” by Israel. Erakat says that the PA should seek membership in international agencies and forums. (HA, MNA 12/30)

Reps. from Iran resume talks with their counterparts from the P5+1 in Geneva, to discuss details about the implementation of the landmark nuclear deal signed on 11/24. The talks are a 1-day affair, and negotiations are set to resume in 2014. (REU 12/30)

The Lebanese army fires anti-aircraft guns at 2 Syrian helicopters it claims violated the country’s air space to fire missiles in a mountainous area nr. the border, resulting in no damage or casualties. (AP 12/30)

In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops open fire on Palestinian farmers working close to the border fence nr. Bayt Lahiya, wounding 1. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 1 village nr. Qalqilya in the morning, and in 1 village nr. Jenin and in Qalqilya and 1 nearby village at night; patrols in 2 villages nr. Qalqilya and 1 village nr. Jenin in the afternoon, and in 1 village nr. Qalqilya at night. (PCHR 12/19)

UN OCHA publishes a report estimating that around 10,000 Palestinians in Gaza have been forced to flee their homes due to flooding, and that 2 have died. Israel allows 450,000 litres of fuel into the Gaza Strip, paid for by Qatar. Meanwhile, an estimated 20 villages and neighborhoods in the Nablus district of the West Bank are without electricity. (AFP, MNA, REU 12/15)

A rogue Lebanese soldier shoots and kills 1 Israeli soldier along the border, hours after which Israeli troops shoot 2 Lebanese soldiers, injuring them, in a location nearby. Israeli DM Ya’alon declares that Israel sees the Lebanese govt. and Lebanese army as “responsible for what happens on their side.” (AP, HA, REU 12/16)

Iranian FM Zarif says that Iranian negotiators will resume talks on its nuclear program with the P5+1 group, after suspending negotiations on 12/12 to protest new U.S. measures targeting companies deemed to be evading sanctions. (AP 12/15)

In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops conduct a limited incursion nr. al-Bureij r.c. and level land close to the border fence. In the West Bank, the IDF demolish 2 homes and a sheep barn in Barta‘a, a village nr. Jenin. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 6 villages nr. Hebron, 1 village nr. Nablus and 1 village nr. Ramallah at night; patrols in 2 villages nr. Jenin at night. (MNA, PNN 6/12; PCHR 6/13)

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu says he is willing to launch direct peace talks with the Palestinians without preconditions, speaking at a press conference in Warsaw alongside Polish PM Donald Tusk. Meanwhile, the Israeli media report that plans are going ahead to build 675 new housing units in Itamar settlement. (HA, YA 6/12)

Israeli DM Moshe Ya’alon departs to Washington for talks with U.S. Defense Secy. Chuck Hagel, his 1st such visit since taking office in 3/2013. The 2 men are said to be focusing their discussion on military and intelligence cooperation with regard to Syria. Ya’alon will also meet with U.S. politicians and pro-Israel lobbying group AIPAC. (AFP 6/12)

A Syrian army helicopter opens fire on a Lebanese border town in the e. Bekaa Valley, wounding 2. State news agency SANA says that the helicopter was chasing “terrorist groups.” In response, the Lebanese army says it will immediately respond to any further such cross-border attacks. (AFP, REU 6/12)

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)

IDF general and head of Central Command Nitzan Alon approves 2 settlement outposts nr. Nablus by combining them into 1 settlement named Rechalim. (PCHR 1/10)

In the West Bank, IDF troops patrol in Bayt Umar village nr. Hebron, then fire rubber-coated steel bullets at stonethrowing Palestinians who confront them, wounding 1 child. The IDF also patrols in ‘Aqabat Jabir r.c. nr. Jericho at night; conducts house searches and arrest raids in and around Bethlehem and in 1 village nr. Hebron at night. (PCHR 1/10)

Israel’s Shin Bet security service reports that 12/2012 saw a 400% increase in what the organization classifies as ‘‘terrorist attacks’’ in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Israeli media promote the statistics as reinforcing recent remarks by IDF col. Yaniv Alaluf that a 3d intifada is already underway. Shin Bet also says that Palestinians fired 1 mortar from the Gaza Strip during the whole of 12/2012. (ToI 1/7)

U.S. pres. Barack Obama nominates Republican Chuck Hagel as his next defense secretary and counterterrorism adviser and John Brennan as head of the CIA. Hagel is expected to meet opposition over his record on Israel and Iran, while Brennan has faced criticism by human rights groups over his views on mistreatment of prisoners during interrogations. (REU 1/7)

The Lebanese army says that the U.S. has given 200 armored vehicles to Lebanon in order to support the armed forces’ ability to respond to crises. (REU 1/7)

Israel’s fin. min. Yuval Steinitz visits Washington, D.C., to press U.S. officials to tighten sanctions on Iran further and give Tehran a clear ultimatum, backed with a credible military threat, to halt its nuclear program. (AP 1/7; JP 1/8)

Israeli leaders defend the 11/21 Gaza cease-fire in the face of strong criticism from politicians like Yesh Atid’s Yair Lapid and Kadima’s Shaul Mofaz, who believe that the operation had not successfully restored ‘‘deterrence.’’ DM Barak asserts that ‘‘it is still not time to enter Gaza in a very wide operation and conquer it.’’ Barak also reveals that Israel dropped 1,000 times as many explosives on the Gaza Strip as landed on its soil. FM Lieberman (Yisrael Beiteinu) states that Israel will ‘‘eventually need to overthrow the Hamas regime.’’ (INN, JP, REU, YA 11/22)

In Gaza, Palestinian factions organize a major rally in Gaza City to celebrate the cease-fire and call for national reconciliation. On a rare visit to Gaza since the Hamas takeover in 2007, Fatah Central Comm. mbr. Nabil Shaath tells the crowds that Israel failed to isolate them from the West Bank. PM Ismail Haniyeh tells the rally that the ‘‘resistance fighters changed the rules of the game’’ but that the fighters should ‘‘guard’’ the truce ‘‘as long as Israel respects it.’’ (AP, MNA 11/22)

Meanwhile, the toll of Operation Pillar of Defense continues to climb: an Israeli soldier dies from injuries sustained by a Palestinian rocket attack during the operation, becoming the 2d soldier and 6th Israeli to die in the fighting. In the Gaza Strip, rescue workers pull the bodies of 2 more Palestinians from the rubble of the Dalou family home (bombed on 11/18), raising the Palestinian toll to 160. Though the ceasefire generally continues to hold, the IDF opens fire on Palestinians who protest at the border fence nr. Khan Yunis, injuring 1 man. (AP, MNA 11/22; PCHR 11/29)

In the West Bank, Israeli authorities transfer 30 Palestinian prisoners to administrative detention, apparently because of their involvement in solidarity events for Gaza. (MNA 11/22)

The IDF patrols in 1 village each nr. Jenin and Tulkarm in the afternoon; conducts house searches and arrests in 1 village nr. Jenin in the morning and in Qalqilya, al-Bireh, Balata r.c. nr. Nablus, 3 villages nr. Hebron, 1 village nr. Jenin, 1 village nr. Qalqilya, 1 village nr. Tulkarm, Nur Shams r.c. nr. Tulkarm, 1 village nr. Ramallah, and Bethlehem, 4 nearby villages, and Dahaysha r.c. and al-Azza r.c. (both nr. Bethlehem) at night. Those detained overnight include at least 5 mbrs. of the Palestinian parliament affiliated with Hamas. Right-wing Jewish extremists chop down 300 olive trees belonging to Palestinians nr. Hebron, leaving graffiti nearby reading ‘‘price tag’’ and ‘‘regards from Beersheba and Tel Aviv.’’ (MNA 11/22; MNA, ToI 11/23; PCHR 11/29)

The European Parliament passes a resolution expressing support for ‘‘Palestine’s bid to become a UN nonmember observer.’’ (EJP 11/22)

The Lebanese army disables a rocket aimed at Israel and say 2 others were fired but fell short of the border. No group claims responsibility. (REU 11/22)

Senior IDF commander Col. Amir Baram tells Israeli television that the army may soon need to enter the Gaza Strip, potentially going ‘‘house to house,’’ in order to ‘‘maintain deterrence.’’ (ToI 10/22)

The IDF kills 3 armed Palestinians (including at least 1 Hamas mbr. and 1 PRC mbr.) during an incursion into the Gaza Strip. Armed Palestinians initially fired mortars at the IDF troops when they entered Gaza, and the IDF responded with air strikes. The IDF also opens fire nr. Bayt Hanun in the morning (causing no injuries) and makes brief incursions into areas nr. Bayt Lahiya and Jabaliya (opening fire but causing no injuries). In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in Tulkarm (firing tear gas at stone-throwing Palestinians) and 3 nearby villages at night. (AP, REU 10/22; PCHR 10/24)

Seven people are killed in exchanges of gunfire in Beirut and Tripoli, in unrest related to the 10/19 assassination of senior intelligence official Wissam al-Hassan. The Lebanese army deploys in order to stop the violence. (NYT, REU 10/22)

Israeli pres. Shimon Peres says he has met with Palestinian pres. Mahmud Abbas and other Palestinian officials several times in recent months to discuss resuming peace talks. The Palestinians do not comment. (WT 6/20) A previously unknown group calling itself the Mujahiddin Shura Council of Jerusalem (which claims ties to alQa‘ida) releases a video claiming responsibility for the 6/18 cross-border attack on Israel from Egypt. The video shows the 2 assailants killed by the IDF, identifying them as an Egyptian and a Saudi. (WP 6/20; NYT 6/21)

Responding to recent Israeli air strikes and cross-border shootings in Gaza that killed 6 Palestinians, Hamas’s IQB for the 1st time in more than a year fires a barrage of at least 45 rockets (including at least 10 Grads) fr. Gaza into Israel; 1 rocket damages an Israeli police barracks and injures 2 police officers, but the others land in open areas. The IQB says it is aiming predominantly at open areas to minimize the severity of its rocket fire and to ‘‘send a message’’ to Israel. Expecting retaliation, Hamas security officials vacate their bases. Israel initially issues a stern warning and carries out 1 air strike on a Palestinian rocketlaunching team nr. Dayr al-Balah, wounding 1 armed Palestinian. Late at night, however, Israeli warplanes and drones carry out 7 air strikes on Hamas targets across Gaza, seriously wounding 1 IQB mbr. The targets include a garage and a group of armed Palestinians in Gaza City, a vacant house in al-Bureij r.c., and 2 IQB training camps nr. Bayt Lahiya and Rafah. (HA 6/19; NYT, YA 6/20; PCHR 6/21; OCHA 6/22)

In the West Bank, Jewish settlers set fire to a mosque in the village of Jaba nr. Bethlehem and spray graffiti on its walls warning the Israeli government against evacuating the unauthorized settlement outpost of Ulpana (5 buildings, 30 families). This is the 12th mosque vandalized by Jewish settlers since 1/2011. Jewish settlers also vandalize the car of the settler leader negotiating the terms of Ulpana’s evacuation with the Israeli government. OCHA reports that in the previous week, the IDF carried out several significant demolitions in Israelicontrolled Area C: 14 residential structures and 11 animal pens in the al-Hirma bedouin community near Bethlehem (64 displaced, including 37 children); 6 seasonal residential structures in the Jordan Valley (20 displaced); 1 residential structure nr. Qalqilya; and 2 animal pens nr. East Jerusalem. (NYT, PCHR, WP, WT 6/20; OCHA 6/22)

The P5+1 and Iran close 2 days of ‘‘intense and tough’’ nuclear talks in Moscow. Both sides say that the talks were so detailed and so heated that they need a break to digest all that has been discussed and to confer with their governments. Iran reportedly offers to halt enrichment of uranium to 20% purity if the international community acknowledges Iran’s right to enrich uranium and immediately rolls back sanctions. The P5+1 refuses to delay or waive sanctions until Iran meets specific benchmarks of compliance. Ashton announces that the sides plan to send technical experts to Istanbul on 7/3 ‘‘to make sure all clearly understood the nature of both sides’ proposals’’ and to gauge the prospects for narrowing gaps and holding more negotiations. Meanwhile, the next round of EU and U.S. sanctions are scheduled to go into effect as scheduled on 7/1. (NYT 6/19; NYT, WP 6/20; NYT 7/2; WT 7/4; NYT 7/5)

Unidentified U.S. and Western officials confirm to the Washington Post (6/20) that the U.S. and Israel jointly developed the Flame virus to map and monitor Iran’s computer networks in preparation for a major cyberwarfare campaign. They said, however, that Israel deployed the virus unilaterally, without consulting the U.S., leading to its premature detection by Iran and to development of critical Iranian countermeasures. U.S. intelligence officials had hoped that Flame would reside undetected on Iran’s networks for years sending back valuable information. Computer experts said (WP 6/20) that Flame contained ‘‘DNA-like evidence’’ linking it to the Stuxnet virus (see QU in JPS 158). This would make the Stuxnet and Flame attacks the first recorded sustained cyber-sabotage campaign against a state. (WP 6/20)

Lebanon releases 9 Islamists (7 Lebanese, 1 Palestinian, 1 Saudi) tied to Fatah al-Islam who were among the approximate 180 people detained during the 2007 clashes between Fatah al-Islam and the Lebanese army in Nahr al-Barid r.c. in n. Lebanon (see QU in JPS 145–46). (WT 6/20)

Weekly Palestinian protests against the separation wall, land confiscations, and settlement expansion this week coincide with Land Day, the annual event to protest Israel’s discriminatory land policies. Israel seals the Erez crossing for 2 days (3/30–31), citing security concerns. Palestinians (accompanied by Israeli and international activists) hold their weekly nonviolent demonstrations in Bil’in, Kafr Qaddum, Nabi Salih, and Ni’lin (with protests in Bil’in and Ni’lin also calling for reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas). IDF soldiers fire live ammunition (Nabi Salih only), rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas, and stun grenades at these protesters, injuring 11 Palestinians (including a child) and 1 international (4 Palestinians are wounded by live fire in Nabi Salih; the rest are hit by tear-gas canisters in Kafr Qaddum). Palestinians hold at least 5 other Land Day rallies in the West Bank (outside Rachel’s Tomb in Bethlehem, outside Ofer Prison and at 2 points along the separation wall nr. Ramallah, and at the Qalandia crossing n. of Jerusalem). IDF soldiers fire live ammunition (Ofer and Qalandia only), rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas, and stun grenades at these protesters, injuring 19 (including 2 children; at least 7 are hit by live fire and 1 is seriously injured by a tear-gas canister to the head). In Gaza, Hamas authorities allow 1,000s of Palestinians to conduct a nonviolent demonstration nearly a mile from the Erez crossing, deploying police to prevent the protesters from marching to the border. Nonetheless, IDF troops on the Gaza border fire on the demonstration, killing 1 Palestinian and wounding 37 (1 seriously; including 16 children). A major protest planned for East Jerusalem does not materialize. Inside Israel, some 2,000 Israeli Palestinians demonstrate in the Galilee, with no violence reported. (NYT, WP 3/31; OCHA, PCHR 4/5)

Nonviolent Land Day protests are also held in Jordan and Lebanon. In Lebanon, 100s of Palestinians and Lebanese gather at Beaufort castle, 9 miles fr. the Israeli border, where Lebanese military forces deploy to prevent them fr. marching to the border. In Jordan, some 20,000 Palestinians march toward the West Bank border but stop 4 miles. No violence is reported in either case. (NYT, WP 3/31)

The IDF patrols in 3 villages nr. Ramallah and 1 nr. Jericho in the morning; patrols in 2 villages nr. Jenin (firing stun grenades at stone-throwing Palestinian youths who confront them, causing no injuries) and 1 nr. Qalqilya in the afternoon; conducts late-night patrols in Jericho and nearby `Ayn al-Sultan r.c., 1 village nr. Hebron, and 1 nr. Ramallah. (PCHR 4/5)

Some 1,000 international activists gather in Egypt in preparation for a 12/31 solidarity march to the Rafah border to mark the 1-yr. anniversary of Operation Cast Lead (OCL) and bring tens of thousands of dollars of humanitarian aid into Gaza, but Egypt vows to keep the border closed. French activists protest outside the French emb. in Cairo, while American activists visit the U.S. emb. Israel allows 3 container shipments of glass into Gaza for the first time since 6/07; says it will allow 3 containers of glass per day for 5 days a week for the next month (a total of 81 containers are allowed in as of 2/9, about 90 percent of what Israel had pledged). In the West Bank, Jewish settlers fr. Bet Ayn nr. Hebron attempt to force 2 Palestinian shepherds grazing their sheep on nearby Palestinian land to leave the area; when they refuse, 1 settler opens fire, hitting 1 shepherd in the shoulder; the IDF arrests both Palestinians while they are receiving medical care from paramedics. (NYT, PCHR 12/30; OCHA, PCHR 1/6; OCHA 2/11)

In Cairo, Mubarak and Netanyahu hold a 3-hr. mtg. to discuss the peace process. Afterward, Egyptian FM Ahmad Abu al-Ghayt publicly praises Netanyahu for raising new ideas for advancing the peace process. (NYT 12/30; HA 12/31; AFP, al-Dustur 1/5)

The Lebanese army directs symbolic anti-aircraft fire at 4 Israeli warplanes that violate Lebanese air space in s. Lebanon. (WT 12/30)

In the West Bank, the IDF detains 3 shop owners and demolishes their auto repair shops in Qalqilya, destroying equipment within and causing substantial losses. (PCHR 8/20)

The Israeli government denies reports that it has officially approved a construction freeze to last until 2010 but confirms that PM Benjamin Netanyahu, DM Ehud Barak, and Housing and Construction M Ariel Atias have made a decision to suspend soliciting of new bids for settlement construction in the West Bank. (JP 8/18; WP, WT 8/19; WJW 8/20; WT 8/21)

A Fatah al-Islam (FI) mbr. jailed in Lebanon for his participation in clashes between FI and the Lebanese army in ‘Ayn al-Hilwa r.c. in 2007 (see Quarterly Updates in JPS 145, 146) escapes fr. a highsecurity prison with the help of 8 other would-be escapees. (NYT 8/19)

The UNSC passes (14–0, with the U.S. abstaining) res. 1860, calling for an “immediate, durable, and fully respected cease-fire, leading to the full withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza” but not outlining an implementation or enforcement mechanism (see Doc. A8). Israel says it will not halt its operations until a Hamas cease-fire can be guaranteed. Meanwhile, Egypt begins intensive bilateral talks with Israeli and Hamas envoys to mediate a cease-fire.

Combat notes: The IDF carries out another 60 air strikes across Gaza, with heavy bombing of the Rafah border. Targets include more than 18 homes of senior IQB members (all believed to be in hiding), “a number of armed operatives” assassinated (not named), several groups of armed men, 15 tunnels (including some homes believed to be covering entrances to tunnels), 11 suspected weapons depots (including 1 mosque in n. Gaza), 15 rocket-launching sites, the PASF headquarters and PA Youth and Sports Min. offices in Rafah, and an Islamic Jihad office in Abasan. Target areas include Abasan, Bani Suhayla, Bayt Hanun, Bayt Lahiya, al-Bureij r.c., Dayr al-Balah, Gaza City (city center, al-Nasser), Jabaliya town and r.c., Khan Yunis, al-Nasser (n. of Rafah), Nussayrat, Rafah. Heavy naval shelling of Dayr al-Balah and the nearby al-Qur’an area of c. Gaza is also reported. As ground operations continue, the IDF begins moving a small number of reservists into the Strip for the 1st time since OCL began. Heavy artillery and ground fire is reported in Abasan, Gaza City (al-Sha‘af, al-Shuja‘iyya, Tal al-Hawa, alZaytun), al-Qarara. Late in the evening, IDF troops withdraw from al-Qarara; residents report at least 20 homes destroyed since the IDF took up positions in the city on 1/6.

Palestinians fire at least 15 rockets and 1 mortar into Israel, lightly injuring 4 Israelis. Areas hit by rockets include Ashdod, Ashqelon, Beersheba (4 Grads), Ofakim.

The Palestinian toll, including bodies recovered during the humanitarian lull today (see below), reaches at least 758 dead and more than 3,100 injured. In addition, a Ukrainian woman (married to a Gazan) and her toddler are killed by an IDF shell in Gaza City, becoming the 1st foreign casualties inside Gaza (1 Egyptian was killed on the Rafah border on 12/28). Today, 3 IDF soldiers are killed and 14 are wounded (1 seriously, 1 moderately, 12 lightly) during clashes inside Gaza, bringing the Israeli toll to 13–14 dead and more than 100 injured.

Humanitarian notes: IDF soldiers fire on relief workers in 3 incidents in which the UN and ICRC had fully coordinated their movements with the IDF in advance (providing the IDF with the license plates of the vehicles, giving precise times and routes of travel, and using clearly marked vehicles) and received IDF assurances that travel would be safe. One UN driver is killed and 2 other UN employees and 1 ICRC employee are wounded. The UN and other groups scale back or suspend aid deliveries to Gaza, citing security concerns.

During the humanitarian lull, the IDF allows ICRC workers back into a heavily damaged residential block of al-Zaytun (see 1/7), where they rescue 103 injured Palestinians who have been stranded since 1/5 and report finding 40–50 bodies, fearing that more dead and injured may be trapped under demolished homes. The Israeli human rights group B’Tselem reports (WP 1/9) new evidence that IDF soldiers stationed outside the destroyed houses were aware people were trapped but denied aid. UN Undersecy. Gen. for Humanitarian Affairs John Holmes urges Israel to investigate, calling (WP 1/9) it “a particularly outrageous incident” and “absolutely horrifying.”

Israel allows 223 Palestinian dual nationals to exit Gaza via the Erez crossing for Jordan (see 1/2).

The UN estimates that 20,000 Gazans have been internally displaced by the fighting. (AP, HA, IDF, IHY, JP, MA, NYT, UNIS, YA 1/8; AFP, Daily Star, IDF, IFM, ITARTASS, MET, NYT, RFM, UNIS, WP, WT 1/9; AFP, AP, NYT, WT 1/12; AYM, JP, NYT, WT 1/13; IHY, MM 1/14; PCHR 1/15; WJW 1/16; NYT 1/17; ITIC 1/18; JPI 1/23)

In the West Bank, the IDF fatally shoots a Palestinian who allegedly attempts to set fire to a gas station outside the Ma’ale Adumim settlement e. of Jerusalem; fires live ammunition and rubber-coated steel bullets at Palestinians demonstrating against OCL in al-Fawar r.c. nr. Hebron, seriously wounding 2 (including a 12-yr.-old boy); fires live ammunition at Palestinians protesting against the separation wall in Bil‘in, wounding 1; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus, in Qabatya nr. Jenin. (PCHR 1/15)

The PFLP General Command fires 4 rockets fr. s. Lebanon into Israel, 3 of which explode near Nahariya, lightly wounding 4 Israelis (5 others are treated for shock). The IDF fires 5 shells the border as a “measured response” and intensifies surveillance overflights of s. Lebanon. Hizballah, the Lebanese government, and Fatah and Hamas reps. in Lebanon condemn the fire, assuring Israel they have no intention of opening a 2d front. The Lebanese army and UNIFIL pledge to step up surveillance in s. Lebanon (ITV, MM, MNR, RFM 1/8; Guardian, HA, MM, NYT, WP, WT, SFR, al-Watan, YA 1/9; YA 1/10; AFP, AP, NYT, WT 1/12; HA, MM 1/15; JPI 1/23)

Islamic Jihad mbrs. fire a rocket fr. Gaza into Israel, killing an Israeli. In the West Bank, the IDF sends undercover units in cars with Palestinian license plates into Bayt Eiba nr. Nablus, where they surround a Palestinian home, order all occupants to surrender (which they do), arrest 2 wanted AMB mbrs. (1 of whom was among the AMB mbrs. granted amnesty by Israel in 7/07); patrols in al-‘Arub r.c., firing on stone-throwing youths who confront them, causing no injuries but arresting 1; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in Hebron, Jenin town and r.c. (NYT, WP 5/13; PCHR 5/15)

The Arab League sends a high-level delegation to Lebanon to discuss the political crisis. With scattered fighting continuing, the Lebanese army warns that it will begin using force to quell clashes if a cease-fire does not hold. Lebanese security officials say that as many as 62 Lebanese have died and 198 have been injured since clashes erupted on 5/6. (NYT, WP 5/13; NYT 5/16; NYT, WP 5/18)

Islamic Jihad fires 7 rockets fr. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or injuries although 1 lands nr. a daycare center and school, causing panic; public and government officials call for immediate school closures until the Israeli government takes steps to halt rocket fire; Israeli officials urge cutting water, fuel, and electricity to Gaza or carrying out a massive military strike. In the West Bank, the IDF demolishes 4 Palestinian homes in and nr. East Jerusalem; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Nablus (targeting Hamas; firing on stone-throwing Palestinians who confront them, wounding 9) and nr. Bethlehem, Hebron, Jenin. (NYT, WP, WT 9/4; OCHA 9/5; PCHR 9/6)

The Lebanese army continues to search Nahr al-Barid r.c. for fugitive FI mbrs., occasionally exchanging gunfire with hold-outs; no casualties are reported. Journalists entering the camp for the 1st time state that “shell blasts honeycombed nearly every building.” (WT 9/4)

In Gaza, the IDF makes an air strike targeting a car in n. Gaza carrying 3 Islamic Jihad mbrs. allegedly coming fr. a rocket-launching site, hitting the car after the men escape; sends troops into Bayt Hanun and makes 2 air strikes on agricultural lands in the area, causing no reported injuries, withdrawing troops in the afternoon; makes a helicopter air strike on a Hamas training base nr. Dayr al-Balah, missing the target, hitting an open area, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus, in Hebron and Jenin town and r.c., and nr. Bethlehem, Ramallah, Tulkarm. Meanwhile, in Rafah, the ESF attempts to arrest an Islamic Jihad mbr. violating the acting Hamas government’s ban on carrying weapons in public, sparking an exchange of fire that causes no injuries; the Islamic Jihad mbr. escapes. (NYT 9/4; OCHA 9/5; PCHR 9/6)

After a week of increased Lebanese army shelling of Nahr al-Barid and reinforcing of positions surrounding the camp, the remaining FI mbrs. holed up in the r.c. make a last-ditch, predawn effort to flee, clashing with soldiers who kill more than 50 FI mbrs., capture 32, and take control of the camp; 5 Lebanese soldiers are also killed, bringing the toll since the crisis began on 5/20/07 to at least 163 soldiers, 222 FI mbrs., 42 civilians. The army says it must conduct demining operations in the camp before refugees may return; Lebanese PM Fuad Siniora vows to repair all damage. (NYT, WP, WT 9/3; WT 9/4, 9/16)

In Gaza, the IDF fatally shoots 2 armed Palestinians on the border nr. Jabaliya; sends troops into al-Shuka nr. Rafah to bulldoze 6 d. of agricultural land nr. the Gaza airport; bulldozes Palestinian land along the border fence n. of Bayt Lahiya. In the West Bank, the IDF sends undercover units into Sa‘ida nr. Tulkarm to raid 2 Palestinian homes, mortally shooting Islamic Jihad cmdr. Tariq Milhem in an exchange of fire, allowing him to bleed to death over 2 hrs., also fatally shooting his 11-yr.-old brother, wounding 2 other family mbrs. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in, fires on residential areas of Balata r.c. nr. Nablus, wounding 1 Palestinian woman; conducts house searches in ‘Ayn Bayt al-Ma’a; fires rubber-coated steel bullets, percussion grenades, tear gas at Palestinian, Israeli, international activists taking part in the weekly nonviolent demonstration against the separation wall in Bil‘in, injuring 2. Jewish settlers fire on a Palestinian wedding party nr. Nablus, wounding 2 Palestinians. Jewish settlers in Hebron assault an 11-yr.-old Palestinian boy riding his bike, breaking his arm. Meanwhile, 500 Fatah mbrs. hold an unauthorized protest against the Hamas-led government outside the main security headquarters in Gaza City, throwing stones at ESF officers guarding the building, who fire into the air and beat back the demonstrators, injuring 15. Separately in Gaza City, ESF officers raid a wedding to halt celebratory gunfire, scuffling with guests, beating and injuring 1 Palestinian. (WT 8/25; OCHA 8/29; PCHR 8/30)

Under a temporary cease-fire brokered by the Palestinian Clerics Association btwn. the Lebanese army and Fatah alIslam (FI) militants who have been fighting in and around the Palestinian refugee camp of Nahr al-Barid nr. Tripoli since 5/07, army soldiers escort the remaining families of FI mbrs. (22 women, 41 children) out of the r.c. in anticipation of a final assault. The army estimates that 70 FI mbrs. are left in the camp and are refusing to surrender. (NYT, WT 8/25)

The IDF fires into Gaza, wounding 2 AMB mbrs. planting roadside bombs and preparing to fire mortars into Israel, barring ambulances fr. reaching the scene for 6 hrs., allowing them to die; the AMB says the men intended to fire mortars to protest a 7/27 decision by Abbas to drop references to Palestinian resistance fr. the existing government platform. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches nr. Ramallah and in Bethlehem, Hebron, Jenin town and r.c.; patrols in Kafr Ra‘i nr. Jenin. (NYT, WP, WT 7/29; OCHA 8/1; PCHR 8/2)

The Lebanese army storms a FI building in Nahr al-Barid r.c., killing 8 militiamen, stating that a final push against the group is “imminent.” Fighting continues, however, through the end of the quarter. (WP, WT 7/29)

Under intense pressure from human and legal rights groups, Abbas temporarily suspends a 7/6 presidential decree expanding the mandate of the PA security forces at the expense of the judiciary. Overnight, the IDF sends tanks and bulldozers supported by helicopters, drones, warplanes into central Gaza nr. al-Bureij r.c., searching residential areas for weapons and wanted Palestinians, detaining 10s of Palestinians, bulldozing 118 d. of land, clashing with Hamas mbrs. who detonate a roadside bomb nr. an IDF vehicle, killing 1 IDF soldier (the 1st killed by Palestinians since 11/1/06), lightly wounding 2. The IDF also makes an air strike on a rocket launching site nr. al-Bureij r.c., injuring 2 Islamic Jihad mbrs. In the West Bank, the IDF fatally shoots an Islamic Jihad gunman who opened fire on an IDF checkpoint nr. Tulkarm without causing injuries; demolishes 3 Palestinian homes, an agricultural warehouse nr. Qalqilya; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Jenin town and r.c., Nablus. In Khan Yunis, 5,000 Fatah mbrs. stage a march in support of Abbas; when they stone an ESF post, ESF mbrs. fire in the air to disperse the crowd, wounding 1 Fatah mbr. In Gaza City, Hamas supporters hold a sit-in to protest Abbas’s recent decision to halt salary payments to employees hired after 12/05. In al-Bureij r.c., Islamic Jihad mbrs. kidnap, kill an alleged Palestinian collaborator. (AYM 7/12; NYT, WP, WT 7/13; OCHA 7/18; PCHR 7/19)

The Lebanese army shells FI targets in Nahr al-Barid r.c. fr. land and sea, sparking the heaviest clashes in wks. Additional troops sent into the camp reportedly encounter sniper fire and booby-trapped buildings as they advance deeper into areas controlled by FI. At least 4 soldiers and 1 civilian are killed, 20 soldiers injured during the day. (NYT, WP, WT 7/13)

In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus, nr. Hebron, and in Jenin town and r.c., Qabatya, Qalqilya. In Ramallah, Fataha-ffiliated students at Birzeit University attack a peaceful sit-in by pro-Hamas students protesting political arrests by the PA targeting Hamas; injuries figures are not reported. (PCHR 7/12; OCHA 7/18; PCHR 7/19)

The Lebanese army reinforces tanks, armored personnel carriers (APCs), troops around Nahr al-Barid r.c., prompting at least another 400 Palestinian refugees to flee the camp in fear of a major assault against the remaining FI mbrs. (WP 7/12; WP 7/13)