61 / 14947 Results
  • February 10, 2018

    In the West Bank, IDF troops arrest 7 Palestinians and issue 4 arrest summons during late-night raids near Tulkarm, Hebron, Bethlehem, and in Nablus; and patrol near Qalqilya and Hebron. They also...

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  • September 25, 2013

    In the West Bank, Israeli troops enter Jalazun r.c. nr. Ramallah and open fire on Palestinians, injuring 3 with live ammunition. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 2 villages nr....

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  • September 19, 2013

    In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 1 village nr. Hebron in the afternoon, and in Hebron and 2 nearby villages and 1 village nr. Tulkarm at night. In Hebron, IDF soldiers clash with students,...

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  • September 3, 2013

    In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops open fire on Palestinian fishermen nr. Bayt Lahiya, causing no injuries or damage to the vessels. IDF troops also conduct a limited incursion in land close to the...

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  • July 21, 2013

    In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in Jenin in the morning, in 1 village nr. Ramallah in the afternoon; patrols in 3 villages nr. Ramallah and 1 village nr. Hebron...

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  • June 14, 2013

    In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops operating from a watchtower on the border fence nr. Dayr al-Balah open fire on a Palestinian farmer, injuring him. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches...

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  • February 3, 2013

    Likud-Yisrael Beiteinu begins talks with Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid party over a possible coalition, with the latter expected to present a lengthy list of demands. (HA 3/2)

    Chief PLO negotiator...

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  • January 25, 2013

    Israeli pres. Shimon Peres meets with Jordanian King Abdallah II at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, to discuss restarting peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians. (JP 1/25...

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  • July 16, 2012

    U.S. secy. of state Clinton meets with Israeli leaders (including PM Netanyahu, Pres. Peres, DM Barak, FM Avigdor Lieberman) and Quartet special envoy Tony Blair in Jerusalem and with PA PM Salam...

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  • June 28, 2012

    The PA announces that pres. Abbas will receive new Israeli vice PM Mofaz on 7/1 in Ramallah to discuss relaunching peace talks. Mofaz’s office says discussions about a meeting are underway but...

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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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  • December 13, 2011

    Quartet officials open 2 days of meetings in Israel and Ramallah aimed at reviving peace talks. Palestinian advocacy groups note “a growing disconnect between the Quartet talks and the situation...

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  • November 21, 2011

    U.S. Dep. Secy. of State Burns meets with Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu to discuss ways of reviving peace talks with the Palestinians. U.S. officials say that they are trying to find ways around...

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  • November 20, 2011

    U.S. Dep. Secy. of State William Burns meets with PA Pres. Mahmud Abbas to urge him to revive peace talks with Israel and delay formation of a unity government with Hamas. (CNN 11/21)

    The...

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  • September 25, 2010

    Secy. of State Clinton races to broker a deal with Israeli officials to extend the settlement freeze 1 day before it is scheduled to expire, while Mitchell meets with Abbas in New York to urge him...

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  • September 16, 2010

    Clinton meets with Abbas in Ramallah, then stops in Amman to brief King Abdullah on the Sharm al-Shaykh talks. Clinton and Mubarak issue statements saying that they have jointly recommended a...

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  • August 31, 2010

    Hamas’s military wing, the Izzeddin al-Qassam Brigades (IQB), takes responsibility for shooting at a Jewish settler vehicle driving nr. Hebron (in area C, under full Israeli control, where the...

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  • August 11, 2010

    U.S. special envoy Mitchell ends a 2-day visit to the region aimed at securing Israeli and Palestinian agreement to resume direct peace talks by 9/1 based on a letter of assurances fr. the Quartet...

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  • June 9, 2010

    Obama receives PA PM Mahmud Abbas in Washington for talks on bilateral relations and how best to proceed with peace talks in light of the flotilla incident. Obama, who has been in regular contact...

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  • March 3, 2010

    After the Arab League endorses the idea of indirect Israeli-Palestinian peace talks for a 4-mo. preliminary period, U.S. special envoy George Mitchell announces that he will head back to the...

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  • October 31, 2009

    IDF troops on the n. Gaza border nr. Bayt Lahiya shoot and wound a mentally ill Palestinian nr. the border fence; the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Palestinian Liaison Office...

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  • May 7, 2009

    Israeli naval vessels fire on and detain a Palestinian fishing boat off the coast of n. Gaza, ordering 3 fishermen to strip naked and swim to the gunboat and the 4th fisherman to accompany the...

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  • March 2, 2008

    Abbas suspends peace talks with Israel to protest Operation Hot Winter. Overnight, the IDF makes air strikes destroying Haniyeh’s vacant office in Gaza City and Change and Reform offices in Khan...

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  • December 2, 2003

    The IDF fatally shoots a Palestinian outside Ramallah who throws a Molotov cocktail at soldiers; fatally shoots a 2d Palestinian in an exchange of fire in Jenin; fires on residential areas of...

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  • January 29, 2003

    The IDF lifts the comprehensive curfew on the occupied territories imposed on 1/26; fatally shoots 1 Palestinian shepherd who leads his flock too near IDF bulldozers leveling 400 dunams of...

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  • November 19, 2002

    The IDF assassinates wanted al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade (AMB) mbr. Tariq Zaghal in Tulkarm, also killing 3 Palestin-ian bystanders; later IDF troops fire on stone-throwing Palestinian youths...

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  • December 15, 2000

    Israeli-Palestinian clashes escalate, leaving 8 Palestinians dead, including senior Islamic Jihad mbr. Sa'ir al-Khruf, who is assassinated by the IDF. (1 Palestinian dies en route to...

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  • October 24, 2000

    Israeli-Palestinian clashes abate further due to heavy rains, cold weather. During the day, 2 Palestinians are killed; a 3d dies of injuries received earlier. Barak sends top security aide Yossi...

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  • September 20, 2000

    PA, Israeli peace teams hold a "businesslike" mtg. on the peace talks. (MM 9/20; MM, NYT 9/21)

    French pres. Chirac phones Arafat to discuss the peace process, especially the Jerusalem...

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  • August 24, 2000

    PM Barak says that if peace talks with the PA fail, he would ask the Likud party to joint a national unity government. Likud head Ariel Sharon, who opposes Barak's peace policies, says he would...

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In the West Bank, IDF troops arrest 7 Palestinians and issue 4 arrest summons during late-night raids near Tulkarm, Hebron, Bethlehem, and in Nablus; and patrol near Qalqilya and Hebron. They also arrest 2 Palestinian laborers and issue stop-work orders for a building under construction in Hebron. Israeli settlers assault Palestinian construction crews repairing a home on Shuhada Street in central Hebron, causing no major injuries. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces assault a number of Palestinian children and eventually arrest 2 in the Old City. They arrest 5 more Palestinians during a raid in Silwan and Abu Dis. (WAFA 2/10; PCHR 2/15)

Weeks after receiving Israeli PM Netanyahu in India, Indian PM Narendra Modi arrives in Ramallah for a visit to the oPt. His arrival marks the first time a sitting Indian PM has visited the oPt. PA pres. Abbas asks Modi to help mediate Palestinian-Israeli peace talks. (TOI, WAFA 2/10)

An IDF helicopter destroys an Iranian drone flying from Syria into the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights, according to an IDF spokesperson (Syrian and Iranian officials deny sending a drone into Israel). The IAF then conducts a number of air strikes on a Syrian airbase near Palmyra, where the drone allegedly took off. During the Israeli sortie, Syrian aerial defense systems shoot down an Israeli F-16, injuring 1 pilot seriously (this marks the first time they have downed an Israeli aircraft since the IDF started flying missions into Syria). The IAF then conducts the “biggest and most significant attack . . . against Syrian air defenses” since the 1982 war in Lebanon, according to a senior IAF official. Israeli jets strike 12 Syrian and Iranian targets in southern Syria, killing 6 people. (AJ, HA, MNA, NYT, REU, TOI, WAFA, YA 2/10; HA, WAFA 2/11)

In the West Bank, Israeli troops enter Jalazun r.c. nr. Ramallah and open fire on Palestinians, injuring 3 with live ammunition. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 2 villages nr. Hebron at night; patrols in 2 villages nr. Hebron and 1 village nr. Jericho at night.

In Jerusalem, security forces raid the al-Aqsa mosque compound in response to stone-throwing from Palestinians. (MNA, YA 9/25; PCHR 9/26)

U.S. Secy. of State John Kerry says that Israel and the Palestinians have agreed to intensify the peace talks and increase the U.S. role. Kerry describes 2 tracks: 1 among the 2 sides’ negotiators, and another among Abbas, Netanyahu, Kerry, and Pres. Obama. (HA, REU 9/25)

Unnamed Western diplomats claim that envoys from the U.S., Russia, France, China, and Britain have come to an agreement on the basis of a res. on Syria’s chemical weapons, something denied by Russian sources. Meanwhile, UN spokesperson Martin Nesirky says chemical weapons experts will investigate 3 alleged incidents of chemical weapons use earlier this year in Syria, and seek information on 3 alleged incidents in 8/2013. (AP, REU 9/25)

In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 1 village nr. Hebron in the afternoon, and in Hebron and 2 nearby villages and 1 village nr. Tulkarm at night. In Hebron, IDF soldiers clash with students, firing rubber-coated metal bullets and tear gas. (WAFA 9/19; PCHR 9/26)

Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat writes to U.S. Secy. of State Kerry, Russian FM Lavrov, EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton and UN Secy.-Gen. Ban Ki-moon to warn them that Israel’s actions in East Jerusalem are undermining peace talks. (WAFA 9/19)

U.S. Secy. of State Kerry calls on the UNSC not to waste any more time in moving to approve the plan for removing Syria’s chemical weapons. Earlier, Russian pres. Putin says that his country has “every reason” to believe that the chemical weapons attack in Damascus was carried out by the rebels as a “provocation.” (AP 9/19)

Gunmen shoot dead an Egyptian police maj.-gen. and wound 9 other policemen and soldiers in clashes on the outskirts of Cairo, after state forces try to arrest suspects involved in the killing of police officers. (AP, REU 9/19)

In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops open fire on Palestinian fishermen nr. Bayt Lahiya, causing no injuries or damage to the vessels. IDF troops also conduct a limited incursion in land close to the border fence nr. Khan Yunis before withdrawing. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 1 village nr. Jenin in the afternoon and in 1 village nr. Hebron at night, and patrols in 1 village nr. Jenin in the afternoon and in al-‘Arub r.c., 1 village nr. Hebron, and in 2 villages nr. Jenin at night. In East Jerusalem, IDF troops clash with residents in Abu Dis after protests against the arrest of a cancer patient. Separately, Israeli police ban 10 Palestinians from attending prayers at al-Aqsa mosque when Jewish extremists plan to visit the compound. Police also arrest Shaykh Raed Salah, leader of the n. Islamic Movement in Israel, on suspicion of incitement. Salah refuses bail conditions that would keep him 30 km away from al-Aqsa for 30 days and remains in jail. (JP, MNA, WAFA 9/3; PCHR 9/5)

Palestinian and Israeli negotiators meet for a 5th round of peace talks in Jerusalem. PA FM Riyad al-Maliki tells the media that Abbas is seeking to arrange a meeting with U.S. Secy. of State John Kerry to express doubts about the nature of the talks and dissatisfaction at U.S. envoy Martin Indyk’s limited participation thus far. Meanwhile, Arab League Secy.-Gen. spokesperson Nassif Hetti tells reporters that an Arab ministerial delegation will meet Kerry in Rome on Sunday to discuss the peace process. (AFP, JP, MNA 9/3)

The U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Cmte. reaches an agreement on a draft authorization for the use of military force against the Syrian govt., with conditions narrower than those requested by Pres. Obama. The draft sets a 60-day time limit on any U.S. action with a conditional single 30-day extension possible. There is also a provision banning the use of ground forces. Speaking to the cmte., Defense Secy. Chuck Hagel says that the pres.’s national security team is now convinced that taking military action against the Asad regime targets would be the right course of action. Hagel also reveals that Obama approved plans in 1/2013 to give lethal aid to Syrian rebels, the 1st time such a decision has been made public. Meanwhile, pro-Israel Jewish community groups such as the American Israel Public Affairs Cmte. (AIPAC) and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations back the administration’s call for a strike on Syria, following a conference call with Obama’s security advisers. In another development, UN Secy.-Gen. Ban Ki-moon affirms that the use of force is only legal as self-defense or with UNSC authorization. (AP, Guardian, JTA, REU, WP 9/3)

An Egyptian military court in Suez hands down sentences ranging from 5 years to life to around 50 Muslim Brotherhood mbrs. convicted of violence against the army, in relation to the events of 8/14 (when security forces massacred anti-coup protesters in Cairo). Meanwhile, Egyptian helicopter gunships kill 8 suspected militants and wound 15 others in air strikes in the Sinai Peninsula nr. the Rafah border with the Gaza Strip. (AFP, AP, REU, NYT 9/3)

In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in Jenin in the morning, in 1 village nr. Ramallah in the afternoon; patrols in 3 villages nr. Ramallah and 1 village nr. Hebron at night. Jewish settlers set fire to more than 400 olive trees southwest of Bethlehem. (MNA 7/23; PCHR 7/25)

It is reported that former U.S. amb. to Israel Martin Indyk will likely head the U.S. delegation to peace talks. Senior Fatah official Nabil Shaath says that a return to direct negotiations is still subject to conditions, while Israeli economics and trade minister Naftali Bennett insists that construction on Jewish settlements will continue regardless. Meanwhile, the Arab League’s Dep. Secy.-Gen. for Palestinian Affairs Mohamed Sabih says that the body supports the Palestinian stance on resuming talks and that it is sceptical of Israeli intentions. (AFP, Guardian, MNA, ToI 7/21)

Gunmen kill 2 Egyptian soldiers and a policeman in 3 separate attacks in al-Arish in the Sinai. (AFP, AP 7/22)

In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops operating from a watchtower on the border fence nr. Dayr al-Balah open fire on a Palestinian farmer, injuring him. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 1 village nr. Hebron in the afternoon; patrols in 3 villages nr. Ramallah, 1 village nr. Jericho, and 1 village nr. Qalqilya in the morning, in 1 village nr. Jericho and 3 villages and al-Fawar r.c. nr. Hebron in the afternoon, and in 2 villages nr. Ramallah and 1 village nr. Qalqilya at night. Israeli soldiers also attack regular demonstrations by Palestinians, Israelis, and international activists against Israel’s separation wall, settlements, and the occupation in 3 villages nr. Ramallah (Bil‘in, Ni‘lin, Nabi Salih), 1 village nr. Qalqilya (Kafr Qaddum) and 1 village nr. Bethlehem (al-Ma‘sara), causing no serious injuries except in Bil‘in, with 1 injury from a tear gas canister and 1 from a rubber-coated metal bullet. (MNA 6/14; PCHR 6/20)

Israeli DM Moshe Ya’alon declares that U.S. Secy. of State John Kerry’s effort to restart peace talks has failed and that the Arab League proposal is just spin. Ya’alon’s remarks are made in an address to the Washington Institute for Near East Policy in Washington, ahead of a meeting with U.S. Defense Secy. Chuck Hagel. His remarks are criticized by Israel’s Science and Technology Minister Jacob Perry as not conducive to resuming negotiations. (HA, JTA 6/14)

Norway’s Dep. DM confirms that UN Secy.-Gen. Ban Ki-moon has asked Sweden, Norway, Finland, and Denmark to contribute soldiers to the UNDOF in the Golan Heights, following Austria’s withdrawal. Meanwhile, U.S. Amb. to the UN Susan Rice says that the Obama administration has determined that sarin gas was used on 3/19 in an attack by the Syrian army in Aleppo and that unidentified chemical weapons were also used on 5/14 and 5/23. Separately, Hizballah leader Hasan Nasrallah declares in a televised speech that his group will continue to fight alongside Syrian pres. Asad and that the decision to intervene had been a calculated one. (AP, DS, HA, REU 6/14)

Likud-Yisrael Beiteinu begins talks with Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid party over a possible coalition, with the latter expected to present a lengthy list of demands. (HA 3/2)

Chief PLO negotiator Saeb Erakat says that the PA will not return to negotiations until Israel stops settlement construction and releases Palestinian prisoners. He also says that there would be no EU initiative to resume peace talks without U.S. involvement. Meanwhile, PM Netanyahu’s aide Yitzhak Molho announces he will be stepping down from the Likud-Yisrael Beiteinu coalition negotiation team in order to remain as the PM’s special envoy for peace negotiations with the Palestinians. (JP 2/4; HA 2/3)

Israeli naval vessels open fire on Palestinian fishermen off the Gaza coast nr. al-Waha, causing no injuries. The IDF also opens fire on Palestinians collecting gravel close to the border fence in the n. Gaza Strip, causing no injuries. In the West Bank, Nablus governor Jibril al-Bakri says that the IDF has reopened several roads in Nablus that had been closed for 13 yrs. The IDF patrols in Jenin in the morning, in 1 village nr. Qalqilya and 1 village nr. Jenin in the afternoon, and in 2 villages nr. Ramallah, 1 village nr. Jericho, 3 villages nr. Salfit, and 1 village nr. Qalqilya at night; conducts house searches and arrest raids in Silwan neighborhood in occupied East Jerusalem and 1 village nr. Nablus in the afternoon, and in Qalqilya, Nablus and 3 nearby villages, Bethlehem and 3 nearby villages, al-Bireh. Tulkarm, and Hebron and 3 nearby villages at night. The IDF detains 20 Hamas mbrs., including an individual involved in national reconciliation efforts. (MNA 2/3; AP 2/4; PCHR 2/7)

Israeli DM Ehud Barak tells a security conference in Munich that Israel means what it says with regard to threats to take preemptive action against its enemies. The comment is taken as hint of admission that Israel was behind the air strike in Syria. U.S. officials now say that the attack targeted a weapons shipment bound for Lebanon but also caused collateral damage to a nearby research center, an explanation for the discrepancy between accounts of the target (see 1/30, 1/31). Meanwhile, UK newspaper the Sunday Times reports that Israel is considering establishing a 10-mi. buffer zone inside Syria to protect itself from rebels. (AP, JP, WP 2/3)

Israeli pres. Shimon Peres meets with Jordanian King Abdallah II at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, to discuss restarting peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians. (JP 1/25)

In the Gaza Strip, the IDF opens fire on Palestinians close to the border fence in 3 separate incidents nr. Jabalya (twice) and nr. Bayt Lahiya, wounding a total of 5. Israeli naval vessels open fire on Palestinian fishermen off the Gaza coast nr. al-Waha, causing no injuries. In the West Bank, Palestinian activists occupy the site of demolished protest village al-Karamah nr. Jerusalem to perform weekly prayers, re-erect tents, and plant olive trees. Activists also stage a demonstration in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails at the entrance to Elazar settlement nr. Bethlehem and are removed by IDF soldiers. The IDF also patrols in 2 villages nr. Jenin in the afternoon, and in 1 village nr. Hebron at night; conducts house searches and arrest raids in 1 village each nr. Hebron and Qalqilya in the afternoon, and in Bethlehem and 1 village nr. Hebron at night. Israeli soldiers attack weekly nonviolent demonstrations held by Palestinians, Israelis, and internationals in 4 villages nr. Ramallah (Bil‘in, Ni‘lin, al-Nabi Salih, Budrus), 1 village nr. Bethlehem (al-Ma‘sara), and 1 village nr. Qalqilya (Kafr Qaddum). In total, 5 Palestinians are hit and injured by tear-gas canisters (4 in Bil‘in and 1 hit in the head in al-Nabi Salih). (MNA 1/25; PCHR 1/31)

U.S. secy. of state Clinton meets with Israeli leaders (including PM Netanyahu, Pres. Peres, DM Barak, FM Avigdor Lieberman) and Quartet special envoy Tony Blair in Jerusalem and with PA PM Salam Fayyad in Ramallah. Though the main purpose of her visit is to discuss Iran, Syria, and other regional changes brought by the Arab Spring, she tells the Israeli and Palestinian sides that they must resume peace talks soon and avoid all unilateral actions. She emphasizes that while the international community is ready to offer ample support for a return to negotiations, the hard work must be done by the parties themselves. (WP 7/17)

Israel allows 40 Palestinian prisoners held in its Ramon prison to receive visits from family members from Gaza, marking the 1st time Israel has allowed family visits for Gazan prisoners since Hamas seized control of the Strip in 6/2007. Unidentified Palestinians fire 1 Qassam rocket fr. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts evening arrest raids, house searches nr. Qalqilya; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Jenin; and conducts late-night patrols in al-Nabi Salih. (TOI 7/16; WP 7/17; PCHR 7/19; OCHA 7/20)

Christians United for Israel (CUFI) opens its 7th annual conference in Washington. At least 5,600 participants attend. Organizers note that CUFI now has 1.1 m. members, 754,000 Facebook fans, and 96 college chapters. The conference theme is ‘‘Defend America; Vote Israel.’’ CUFI founder James Hagee focuses on the importance of Christian Zionism and supporting Israel as part of ‘‘living out God’s mandate.’’ Other speakers include Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT), fmr. White House spokesman Ari Fleischer, Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations head Malcolm Hoenlein, and Zionist Organization of America pres. Morton Klein. The speakers focus on Iran, U.S.-Israel security cooperation, and halting Palestinian incitement. (WJW 7/19)

The PA announces that pres. Abbas will receive new Israeli vice PM Mofaz on 7/1 in Ramallah to discuss relaunching peace talks. Mofaz’s office says discussions about a meeting are underway but does not confirm that a date has been set. (WP 6/29)

Jewish settlers complete the evacuation of Ulpana outpost. The IDF patrols in 2 villages nr. Ramallah and 1 nr. Tulkarm in the morning; and in 1 village each nr. Jenin, Jericho, Qalqilya, and Ramallah late at night. (NYT 6/29; PCHR 7/5; JPI 7/6; OCHA 7/13)

Hamas reports that senior IQB official Kamal Ghanaja (an aide to assassinated IQB commander Mahmud al-Mabhuh; (see QU in JPS 155) has been killed in Damascus. His body, bound and tortured, was found in his burned Damascus home. While Hamas accuses Israel of assassination, Israel says it believes the Syrian regime, angry over Hamas’s refusal to support Asad, carried out the murder. Syrian opposition groups suspect pro-government militias. (WP 6/29)

Washington Jewish Week reports that 60 rabbis representing the Washingtonbased Rabbinic Cabinet of the Jewish Federation of North America (JFNA) recently made a lobbying trip to New York to meet with the UN representatives of 12 countries (mostly Eastern European) to press the UN to reverse its ‘‘poor and unjust treatment of Israel,’’ to block Palestinian statehood efforts, and to urge the dismantling of UN committees that focus exclusively on Palestinian issues (e.g., the Division for Palestinian Rights, the Comm. on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, and the Special Comm. to Investigate Israeli Human Rights Practices Affecting the Palestinian People). The group was advised by fmr. U.S. ambs. to the UN Richard Shifter and Jeanne Kirkpatrick. The JFNA says it requested meetings with 14 countries, but 2 (unnamed) declined. (WJW 6/28)

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)

Quartet officials open 2 days of meetings in Israel and Ramallah aimed at reviving peace talks. Palestinian advocacy groups note “a growing disconnect between the Quartet talks and the situation on the ground.” (NYT 12/14)

Jewish settlers take over several abandoned churches in a closed military zone nr. the Jordanian border to protest Jordan’s efforts to intervene with the Israeli government over its 12/12 closure of a footbridge used by nonMuslims to reach the Haram al-Sharif/ Temple Mount; IDF troops remove them and arrest 17. Other settlers block a main West Bank road and stone passing Palestinian vehicles. Later, about 50 Jewish settlers with inside information of IDF plans to remove the Mitzpe Yitzhar settlement outpost nr. Nablus that evening attempt to prevent the evacuation by breaking into an IDF base in the West Bank, setting fires, vandalizing vehicles, clashing with troops, and stoning a senior officer; troops detain 2. PM Netanyahu vows to “act aggressively against those harming Israeli soldiers and their commanders”; DM Ehud Barak condemns both incidents as “home-grown terror.” Late at night, Jewish settler youths enter Nablus to pray at Joseph’s Tomb, but they do so without the usual coordination with and escort of the IDF and deface a mosque. Meanwhile, IDF troops make a brief incursion into c. Gaza to level land and clear lines of sight along the border fence e. of Bureij r.c., firing on surrounding areas to keep Palestinians away, wounding a farmer working his field nearby. IDF troops on the n. Gaza border fire warning shots at Palestinian and international activists staging a nonviolent protest march to the border nr. Bayt Hanun to protests Israel’s imposition of a no-go zone, causing no injuries; also fire warning shots at Palestinians scavenging for construction material in the demolished Erez industrial zone, wounding a 14-yr.-old boy. In the West Bank, the IDF makes a latenight raid on the home of Change and Reform PC mbr. Ayman Daraghmeh, arresting him (making him the 24th Hamas-affiliated PC mbr. now in detention); conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Salfit. (NYT, WP, WT 12/14; PCHR 12/15; OCHA 12/16; JPI 12/23)

The PA Tourism Min. launches a campaign in Bethlehem coinciding with Christmas called “Palestine Celebrating Hope.” Tourism M Kholoud Daibes says the intention is to convey to the estimated 50,000 foreigners visiting Bethlehem for Christmas “that we have hope of having our own independent state, and we need international support for that.” The initiative includes special tours of the separation wall around Bethlehem and free postcards of the Church of the Nativity, which tourists can mail at the Manger Square post office with Palestinian stamps. (WT 12/14)

U.S. Dep. Secy. of State Burns meets with Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu to discuss ways of reviving peace talks with the Palestinians. U.S. officials say that they are trying to find ways around Palestinian demands for a settlement freeze in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, but give no details. (NYT 11/22; JPI 12/2)

The IDF makes a late-night incursion into s. Gaza, patrolling in and firing on residential areas of Rafah, causing no injuries and making no arrests. Israeli naval vessels fire on Palestinian fishing boats off the n. Gaza coast, forcing them back to shore. In the West Bank, the IDF raids and searches the home of a PA police officer nr. Jenin, arresting him; patrols in 7 villages nr. Ramallah, in 1 instance firing rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas, and stun grenades at stone-throwing Palestinian youths who confront them. (PCHR 11/24; OCHA 11/25)

PA Tourism and Antiquities M Hamdan Taha says that now that Palestine has full membership in UNESCO (see QU in JPS 162), it is planning to seek world heritage status for the old cities of Hebron and Jericho. An application for Bethlehem is already in the works and is expected to have a better chance now that Palestine has membership. The PA also plans to seek recovery of artifacts looted by Israel, increase funds for preservation and excavations, and use its status to force Israel to stop calling West Bank sites “Israeli antiquities.” (WP 11/22)

King Abdallah of Jordan makes an official visit to Ramallah (his 1st in 10 yrs.) to hold talks with PA pres. Abbas on their independent efforts to reconcile with Hamas and personally to inform Abbas that Jordan has invited Damascus-based Hamas leader Khalid Mishal (barred fr. visiting Jordan since 1999) for an official visit to Amman. The king stresses that any improvement in ties with Hamas is not intended as a move against the PA or as a gesture to Jordan’s Islamist opposition. The U.S. reportedly has expressed displeasure to Jordan over the Mishal visit and hinted that U.S. aid could be cut if Jordan reconciles with Hamas. (NYT, WP 11/22; JPI 12/2)

U.S. Dep. Secy. of State William Burns meets with PA Pres. Mahmud Abbas to urge him to revive peace talks with Israel and delay formation of a unity government with Hamas. (CNN 11/21)

The IDF conducts morning patrols in Qalqilya, Salfit, 2 villages nr. Jenin, and 1 village each nr. Jericho and Tulkarm; fires tear gas, stun grenades to disperse a funeral procession nr. Hebron, causing no serious injuries; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Jenin and in Salfit; conducts late-night patrols in Jericho, 2 villages each nr. Ramallah and Tulkarm, and 1 nr. Salfit. Jewish settlers in Hebron attack the home of a Palestinian released in the prisoner swap deal that freed captured IDF soldier Gilad Shalit in 10/2011, hang posters urging that he be killed, vandalize a grocery store owned by a relative; the Palestinian, Hani Jaber, had been sentenced to life in prison for fatally stabbing a settler in 1993. The incidents spark several clashes between the settlers and local Palestinians in which settlers attack and vandalize several more Palestinian homes; the IDF intervenes, separating the sides. (WP 11/21; PCHR 11/24; OCHA 11/25)

Secy. of State Clinton races to broker a deal with Israeli officials to extend the settlement freeze 1 day before it is scheduled to expire, while Mitchell meets with Abbas in New York to urge him not to walk away from peace talks immediately if Netanyahu allows the freeze to expire. On the ground Jewish settlers begin positioning construction equipment in some settlements. In addition, Jewish settlers in Revava settlement nr. Salfit seize 30 d. of Palestinian agricultural land, raze crops, and install 2 mobile homes as a “new quarter” of the settlement. Jewish settlers fr. Nokdim settlement nr. Bethlehem place 3 mobile homes on nearby Palestinian land. Jewish settlers fr. Barqan settlement nr. Salfit raze adjacent Palestinian land to expand the settlement’s industrial zone. Jewish settlers fr. Givat Ze’ev settlement enter Beitunia town nr. Ramallah and make preparations to celebrate the Sukkoth holiday; the IDF removes them. (NYT, WP 9/26)

Meanwhile, Israeli-Palestinian clashes in Issawiyya, which began on 9/22, taper off by the end of the day, leaving a total of 99 Palestinians (including 17 children) and 9 Israelis injured (7 lightly, 2 moderately), and 70 Palestinians under arrest; during the rioting, Palestinians set fire to or damage 8 Israeli cars and vandalize an Israeli tourist information center. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in Iraq Burin village nr. Nablus in the afternoon, firing tear gas and stun grenades at stone-throwing Palestinian youths who confront them, causing no serious injuries; fires rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas, and stun grenades at Palestinian, Israeli, and international activists conducting a nonviolent march from Bayt Umar village to Karme Tzur settlement outside Hebron to protest land confiscations and settlement expansion; 10s suffer tear gas inhalation and 2 Palestinians and 3 Americans are injured. An Egyptian hospital reports that an armed Palestinian transported to Egypt for treatment has died of injures sustained in the 9/14 IDF shelling nr. Gaza Valley village. (NYT, WP 9/26; PCHR 9/30; OCHA 10/1)

Delegations headed by Hamas Political Bureau chief Khalid Mishal and senior Fatah official Azzam al-Ahmad meet for 3 hours in Damascus, afterward issuing a statement confirming a restart of national unity talks. (AP 9/24; AP, REU 9/25; JP 9/27; MNA 11/1) 

Clinton meets with Abbas in Ramallah, then stops in Amman to brief King Abdullah on the Sharm al-Shaykh talks. Clinton and Mubarak issue statements saying that they have jointly recommended a short 3 or 4 mo. extension to the settlement freeze during which Israel and the PA would focus on border issues in hopes of solving which settlements would stay and go under final status. Abbas states: “We all know there is no alternative to peace other than negotiating peace, so we have no alternative but to continue peace efforts.” (NYT, WP 9/17)

Mitchell goes to Damascus to brief Syrian pres. Bashar al-Asad on the peace talks, saying for the first time that the U.S. intends to push for renewed Israeli-Syrian peace talks parallel to Israeli-Palestinian talks. (Asia Times 9/16)

In the West Bank, the IDF conducts synchronized late-night patrols in 2 villages e. of Qalqilya, making no arrests; similar late-night patrols without incident in villages nr. Salfit; late-night arrest raids, house searches in Hebron, Tulkarm. (PCHR 9/23; OCHA 9/24)

Hamas’s military wing, the Izzeddin al-Qassam Brigades (IQB), takes responsibility for shooting at a Jewish settler vehicle driving nr. Hebron (in area C, under full Israeli control, where the PASF is not allowed to operate), killing 4 Jewish settlers, including a pregnant woman, marking the deadliest West Bank attack on Israelis in more than 2 yrs. and the first staged by Hamas since before the 1/2006 elections. Both Abbas and Netanyahu say the attack should not derail peace talks. The YESHA settlement council vows to renew construction in West Bank settlements immediately, before the temporary freeze ends, to demonstrate Israelis’ “resolve against terrorism.” Following the attack and throughout the night, the IDF seals the entrances to Hebron, Halhul, and al-Fawar r.c. and imposes a curfew on nearby Bani Na‘im village, raiding and searching homes and detaining Palestinians with suspected connections to Hamas. Meanwhile, Jewish settlers implementing their “price-tag” doctrine to punish Palestinians for any state acts against settlers, beat Palestinian farmers working their land nr. Emanuel settlement nr. Salfit and stone Palestinian vehicles traveling on the Nablus–Qalqilya road (2 separate incidents) as well as on a road bypassing Yitzhar settlement nr. Nablus. Jewish settlers fr. Kiryat Arba in Hebron attempt to break into a nearby Palestinian home but are prevented by the IDF. Late at night, the IDF patrols 2 villages nr. Salfit; no incidents are reported. The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reports that in the previous wk. 3 Palestinians were killed in 2 separate tunnel collapses on the Rafah border. (NYT, WP, WT 9/1; PCHR 9/2; OCHA 9/3)

U.S. special envoy Mitchell ends a 2-day visit to the region aimed at securing Israeli and Palestinian agreement to resume direct peace talks by 9/1 based on a letter of assurances fr. the Quartet. After separate talks with Abbas in Ramallah and Netanyahu in Jerusalem he is unusually upbeat and says he is optimistic that direct talks will resume soon, but gives no details. He leaves Dep. Asst. Secy. of State for Near Eastern Affairs David Hale in the region to continue discussions and finalize details of a Quartet statement. (State Dept. daily press briefing, WT 8/11; see also WP 8/10)

The IDF announces that for the month of Ramadan (8/10–9/10) it is extending operating hours at some checkpoints along the separation wall in the Bethlehem, Jenin, and Ramallah to facilitate travel to Jerusalem; removing earthen mounds along 3 routes in Nablus, Ramallah, Hebron to improve traffic flow; and issuing an additional 200 visitor permits for nationals of select Arab countries to enter the West Bank. Israel has also, however, limited Palestinian access to Jerusalem during Ramadan to men over 50 and women over 45 years of age. Meanwhile, the IDF conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in Hebron, nr. Ramallah. As a goodwill gesture to mark the start of Ramadan, Hamas authorities in Gaza release 100 Fatah-affiliated prisoners, while the PA in the West Bank releases 8 Hamas-affiliated prisoners (MNA 8/11; PCHR 8/12, 8/19; OCHA 8/20)

Obama receives PA PM Mahmud Abbas in Washington for talks on bilateral relations and how best to proceed with peace talks in light of the flotilla incident. Obama, who has been in regular contact with Netanyahu since the flotilla attack, for the first time publicly proposes that Israel switch fr. a blanket ban on imports to Gaza with a list of exempted items permitted entry and instead allow all imports minus a list of banned items. (WP 6/9; NYT, WP, WT 6/10; WJW 6/17)

The PA says it has given Mitchell its baseline positions for direct talks with Israel and is prepared to begin direct negotiations once Israel does the same. Israel, however, says it will not lay out its negotiating position until direct talks begin “because that would be asking us to negotiate against ourselves.” (NYT 6/10)

IDF troops on the Israeli side of the Erez crossing fire warning shots at Palestinians scavenging construction materials in the industrial zone, causing no injuries. IDF troops make a brief incursion into the s. Gaza border area to level land to clear lines of sight. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts late-night arrests raids, house searches nr. Bethlehem, Hebron (including surrounding and searching the home of one of the organizers of the local separation wall protests, questioning him for 3 hrs. but not arresting him), Jenin; breaks up Palestinians and Israeli activists holding a nonviolent demonstration against the separation wall in al-Walaja nr. Bethlehem, arresting 1 Palestinian, 2 Israelis. (PCHR 6/10, 6/17; OCHA 6/18)

After the Arab League endorses the idea of indirect Israeli-Palestinian peace talks for a 4-mo. preliminary period, U.S. special envoy George Mitchell announces that he will head back to the region in several days to secure the formal agreement of Israel and the Palestinians to relaunch peace talks, suspended since Israel launched Operation Cast Lead (OCL) against Gaza in 12/08. (NYT, WP, WT 3/4)

IDF troops make a brief incursion 500 m into n. Gaza nr. Bayt Lahiya to level land to clear lines of sight. In the West Bank, the IDF makes a late-night incursion into Beitunia w. of Ramallah, patrolling streets and firing rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas at stone-throwing youths who confront them, causing no reported injuries; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Jenin town and r.c., nr. Bethlehem and Ramallah. The IDF reports that it called off a raid on a West Bank village after a soldier posted the time and place of the planned operation on Facebook; the soldier was court-martialed and sentenced to 10 days in prison. (PCHR, WT 3/4; OCHA, PCHR 3/11)

IDF troops on the n. Gaza border nr. Bayt Lahiya shoot and wound a mentally ill Palestinian nr. the border fence; the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Palestinian Liaison Office secure his release fr. Israeli custody. (PCHR 11/5)

In the West Bank, the IDF conducts late-night raids, house searches in and around Tulkarm town and r.c., but makes no arrests. Nr. Nablus, 8 Jewish settlers fr. Brakha raid Burin village, where they are confronted by 10s of stone-throwing Palestinians; IDF troops in the area (possibly escorting the settlers) fire rubbercoated steel bullets, tear gas at the Palestinians, injuring 1 and arresting 1 other. (PCHR 11/5)

U.S. secretary of state Hillary Clinton arrives in the Middle East and meets with Netanyahu and Abbas, hoping to help them reach an agreement on settlements that would allow resumption of peace talks. (NYT 10/31; NYT, WP 11/1; JR 11/23)

Israeli naval vessels fire on and detain a Palestinian fishing boat off the coast of n. Gaza, ordering 3 fishermen to strip naked and swim to the gunboat and the 4th fisherman to accompany the gunboat to Ashdod port; the fishermen are released in the evening. IDF troops on the s. Gaza border fire on residential areas of al-Shuka, moderately wounding a Palestinian woman. In the West Bank, an IDF soldier is killed in a friendly fire incident nr. Ramallah. The IDF conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in Bethlehem. (OCHA 5/13; PCHR 5/14)

At an emergency session in Cairo, the Arab League states unanimously reject the Obama admin.’s request as relayed by King Abdallah (see 4/21) to amend the 2002 Arab League initiative by dropping demands for the Palestinian right of return as a means of jumpstarting comprehensive Arab-Israeli peace talks. (Irish Times 5/8; NYT 5/12; see also AP, UPI 5/6)

Abbas suspends peace talks with Israel to protest Operation Hot Winter. Overnight, the IDF makes air strikes destroying Haniyeh’s vacant office in Gaza City and Change and Reform offices in Khan Yunis. During the day, IDF assaults kill at least 21 Palestinians (including at least 7 civilians, including 3 children; 5 militants; 2 Hamas-affiliated policemen); 4 IDF soldiers are wounded. Palestinians fire about 33 rockets (3 of them Grads, according to the IDF) fr. Gaza into Israel, causing damage but no injuries. Egypt opens its border to allow transportation of wounded Palestinians to Egyptian hospitals, but Palestinian hospitals report that many patients are too badly injured to be moved. Late in the evening (9:00 P.M. EST; 4:00 A.M. on 3/3 local time), the IDF withdraws ground troops fr. the Jabaliya area, substantially reducing the scope of Operation Hot Winter. Meanwhile, across the West Bank, 1,000s of Palestinians protest the Israeli strikes on Gaza (in Ramallah, 100s of Palestinians waving Hamas banners rally outside the Muqata‘a). The IDF fires on 3 protests nr. Hebron, killing a 14-yr.-old Palestinian and wounding a total of 16 Palestinians (including 10 teenagers); patrols in, fires on residential areas of Hijja nr. Qalqilya, seriously wounding 1 Palestinian; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Hebron, in Nablus, nr. Jenin. (WP 3/2; HA, NYT, WP, WT 3/3; PCHR 3/6) 

The IDF fatally shoots a Palestinian outside Ramallah who throws a Molotov cocktail at soldiers; fatally shoots a 2d Palestinian in an exchange of fire in Jenin; fires on residential areas of Nablus, Rafah, Ramallah; demolishes 2 Palestinian homes in Jenin, 1 in East Jerusalem, 1 in Rafah; conducts arrest raids in Jenin, Nablus. Israel approves construction of 1,720 new housing units in West Bank, Gaza Jewish settlements, raising to 2,819 the number of units approved since the road map was announced. (MM 12/2; NYT, PR, WP12/3; LAW, PCHR 12/4)

Israel says it would only seriously consider resuming peace talks with Syria if Damascus “renounces terror” (including halting all aid to Hizballah and Palestinian groups) and agrees to resume talks “without preconditions” (i.e., without starting talks fr. the point at which they left off in 3/00). (HA 12/2) (see 12/1)

The IDF lifts the comprehensive curfew on the occupied territories imposed on 1/26; fatally shoots 1 Palestinian shepherd who leads his flock too near IDF bulldozers leveling 400 dunams of Palestinian crops nr. Jabaliya r.c.; bulldozes land around, fires on residential areas of Tal al-Sultan, wounding 18 Palestinians; reportedly finds, disables 2 bombs planted nr. a Jewish settlements in Gaza, inside a PSF station in Hebron. A Palestinian gunman fires at a Jewish settler vehicle nr. Beit El settlement, wounding 2 Jewish settlers. A 2d Palestinian gunman shoots, lightly injures an IDF soldier outside a Jewish settlement in Gaza; soldiers fire on residential areas nearby in response, wounding 19 Palestinians. A Palestinian dies of injuries received during the IDF’s 1/25 attack on Gaza City. Jewish settlers attack 2 international peace activists who approach Itamar settlement to investigate Palestinian claims that settlers had taken over Palestinian farmland. Settlers beat the activists: steal their phone, camera; take their jackets, shoes, socks, wallets, passports; forcibly take them to Itamar. The IDF arrests the activists for trespassing on settler property. An Israeli court authorizes Israel’s seizure of over $9 m. fr. the PA’s frozen funds to pay the Ayalon insurance company to cover claims for cars stolen btwn. 1996 and 2000, allegedly with the PA’s knowledge and cooperation. (HA, International Solidarity Movement press release, LAW, PCHR 1/29; HA, NYT 1/30; PR 2/5)

Arafat calls on Sharon to immediately resume peace talks in light of his election victory, but Sharon says he will not deal with Palestinians “involved in terror.” (HA 1/29; NYT 1/30)

Bush phones Sharon to congratulate him on his election victory. Also calling to congratulate Sharon are Egyptian Pres. Husni Mubarak, who invites him to reopen peace talks with the Palestinians in Cairo after his new government is formed, and European Union (EU) pres. Romano Prodi who urges him to take action on the road map quickly, now that elections are over. (HA, MM 1/30, 1/31; MM 2/5; MEI 2/21)

The IDF assassinates wanted al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade (AMB) mbr. Tariq Zaghal in Tulkarm, also killing 3 Palestin-ian bystanders; later IDF troops fire on stone-throwing Palestinian youths protesting the assassination, killing a 14-yr.-old Palestinian boy. The IDF also fatally shoots 2 Palestinians outside Kefar Darom settlement in Gaza; demolishes 9 Palestinian homes in the Shaykh ‘Ajlin neighborhood of Gaza City; raids a clinic in Jenin, destroying medical equipment, barring dialysis patients fr. taking their treatments. In Hebron, Israeli border police ambush, hold at gunpoint a group of 15 Palestinian journalists, seriously beat 1. (NYT, PCHR, WP 11/20; NYT 11/21; REU 11/23; UPMRC 11/27)

The Labor party elects Haifa mayor Amram Mitzna as its candidate for PM in the 1/28/03 elections. Mitzna takes 54% of the vote over fmr. Israeli DM Benjamin Ben-Eliezer’s 38% and Labor mbr. Haim Ramon’s 7%. Mitzna says he will run on a platform calling for immediate, unconditional resumption of peace talks with the Palestinians, withdrawal of settlers from all of Gaza and some of the West Bank, and unilateral withdrawal fr. the West Bank if peace talks fail; says he would withdraw fr. Gaza by the end of 2003 if elected. (MM 11/19; MM, NYT, WP, WT 11/20; MENA 11/20 in WNC 11/21; WT 11/21; JT, MA 11/21 in WNC 11/22; MA 11/22, SA 11/23 in WNC 11/25; JT 11/26 in WNC 11/27; JPI 11/29; AYM 12/13 in WNC 12/16)

 

Israeli-Palestinian clashes escalate, leaving 8 Palestinians dead, including senior Islamic Jihad mbr. Sa'ir al-Khruf, who is assassinated by the IDF. (1 Palestinian dies en route to the hospital when his ambulance is detained by the IDF for over 1 hr.) In Nablus, 20,000 Palestinians attend a funeral for 3 of the dead killed overnight. Israel allows a small number of West Bank, Gaza Palestinians over age 35 to attend Friday prayers at al-Aqsa Mosque. Those that are barred scuffle with Israeli police who respond with rubber bullets, stun grenades, tear gas. The IDF also placed curfews on Salfit, Qasrah to conduct an arrest sweep. IDF directed shells, heavy machine gun fire at residential areas in Aida, Aqbat Jabir camp, Bayt Jala (damaging an elementary school), al-Bireh, Dayr al-Balah, Nablus, Ramallah (damaging the PA Local Government Min.), Tulkarm; bulldozes Palestinian agricultural land across Gaza, in Qalqilya. In Rafah, the IDF fires a shell at a family protesting the bulldozing of their land, injuring 6 children. Jewish settlers attack Palestinian property around Qalqilya, shoot at Palestinians in Silt al-Thahir (wounding 1). (ADM, LAW 12/15; NYT, WP, WT 12/16; PCHR 12/18; NYT 1/17)

Israel's Ben-Ami meets with Arafat at Erez to discuss resuming peace talks, holds follow-up mtg. with PA Information M `Abid Rabbuh in Tel Aviv. The State Dept. says that midlevel Israeli, PA negotiators may come top Washington the wk. of 12/18. (NYT, WP 12/16) (see 12/10)

In Gaza, over 30,000 Palestinians attend a Hamas rally in support of continuing the al-Aqsa intifada no matter what stand the PA regarding negotiations with Israel. (MEI 12/22)

Israeli-Palestinian clashes abate further due to heavy rains, cold weather. During the day, 2 Palestinians are killed; a 3d dies of injuries received earlier. Barak sends top security aide Yossi Ginnosaur to Gaza to discuss security coordination with PSF head Dahlan. The IDF shells areas around Bayt Jala, Hebron, Jericho, Rafah, and Tulkarm, severely damaging more than 6 Palestinian homes, killing 1 man, wounding at least 8. The IDF uproots Palestinian olive groves nr. Netzarim Junction. IDF tanks in Psagot settlement fire into al-Bireh camp outside Ramallah in response to sniping. Barak allows Jewish settlers to go back to Mitzpe Hagit, one of the illegal settlement enclaves evacuated in 1999. (Gush Shalom press release 10/24; LAW, NYT, WT 10/25)

Pres. Clinton phones Arafat to urge him to halt Palestinian demonstrations, arrange a time to come to Washington to discuss resuming peace talks. Arafat gives no assurances. The White House says Clinton also phoned Barak, to urge Israeli restraint and invite him to a separate mtg. in Washington, but the leaders were "unable to speak." (MM, NYT, WT 10/25; NYT, YA 10/26; AYM 10/26 in WNC 10/30)

In Washington, Pres. Clinton, King Abdallah of Jordan sign a free trade agmt. (AP, BBC, MM 10/24; WJW 10/26; WP 10/27; JT 10/30, 10/31 in WNC 11/1; JT 11/8 in WNC 11/9; JT 11/9 in WNC 11/13; WP 11/10)

In a coordinated event, groups of West Bank Palestinians, 10,000s of Jordanians fr. across the kingdom march toward Jerusalem in a nonviolent demonstration of support for the right of return. While Palestinians are stopped at IDF checkpoints, the Jordanians are halted nr. Allenby Bridge by Jordanian riot police and security forces, with helicopter support. The Jordanian authorities beat back marchers with batons, water cannons, and tear gas, injuring 100s. (AP, BBC, MM 10/24; WJW 10/26; WP 10/27; JT 10/30, 10/31 in WNC 11/1; JT 11/8 in WNC 11/9; JT 11/9 in WNC 11/13; WP 11/10)

100s of Yemenis march to the UN offices in Sana' to protest Israeli violence against the Palestinians. In the U.S., a rally in solidarity with the Palestinian people is held in Chicago. (Bernama-IINA [Internet] 10/24)

PA, Israeli peace teams hold a "businesslike" mtg. on the peace talks. (MM 9/20; MM, NYT 9/21)

French pres. Chirac phones Arafat to discuss the peace process, especially the Jerusalem impasse. (AFP 9/20 in WNC 9/26) (see 9/19)

PA Planning M Shaath forms a team to draft plans to transform the Min. of Planning and International Cooperation into a foreign ministry, to otherwise standardize the Palestinian diplomatic network. (al-Quds 9/21 in WNC 9/27)

PM Barak says that if peace talks with the PA fail, he would ask the Likud party to joint a national unity government. Likud head Ariel Sharon, who opposes Barak's peace policies, says he would reject the offer. (NYT 8/25; WP 8/31; MA 9/7 in WNC 9/8) (see 8/20)

In Alexandria, Israeli chief negotiator Ben-Ami, Egyptian pres. Mubarak discuss the Jerusalem impasse. Ben-Ami says Mubarak offered 2 compromise proposals, but Egypt does not confirm. (WP 8/24; MENA 8/24 in WNC 8/28; JP [Internet] 8/25; MENL, NYT 8/26; MM 8/29; MEI 9/1)