57 / 14643 Results
  • January 6, 2019

    Unidentified Palestinians fly an incendiary device from Gaza into southern Israel attached to a cluster of balloons, where it lands in an open area in the Sdot Negev Regional Council. IDF troops...

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  • September 10, 2018

    Off Gaza’s coast, Israeli naval forces open fire on a small fleet of Palestinian boats sailing in a symbolic attempt to break the Israeli blockade. Meanwhile, thousands of Palestinians gather...

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  • December 29, 2016

    IDF troops arrest 3 Palestinians during raids and house searches nr. Hebron, and patrol nr. Hebron, Jenin, and Nablus. (PCHR 1/5)

    U.S. dep. national security advisor Ben Rhodes says that...

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  • July 15, 2015

    Late at night in Gaza, an armed group fires a rocket into s. Israel nr. Ashqelon, causing no damage. The IAF then launches air strikes on 2 “terrorist infrastructure” targets in c. and n. Gaza,...

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  • July 9, 2015

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces arrest a Palestinian late at night after he allegedly attempts to stab an Israeli soldier at Qalandia checkpoint nr. Jerusalem. During the day, the IDF patrols in...

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  • June 15, 2015

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces uproot olive trees and demolish a car wash on about 20 dunams (around 5 acres) of Palestinian land nr. Bethlehem; confiscate grocery stalls along bypass road Route...

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  • October 19, 2014

    In the West Bank, an Israeli settler hits a 5-year-old Palestinian girl with his car nr. Sinjil, and she later dies of her injuries at a nearby hospital. IDF troops shoot and wound 1 Palestinian...

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  • May 12, 2014

    In the West Bank, IDF troops demolish 7 buildings, including 5 residential rooms nr. Nablus, displacing 4 families (27 people). The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in Nur Shams r.c....

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  • May 8, 2014

    Off the coast of the Gaza Strip nr. Khan Yunis, Israeli naval vessels open fire on Palestinian fishermen, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and...

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  • May 7, 2014

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

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  • April 27, 2014

    In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 2 villages nr. Hebron and 1 village nr. Bethlehem at night; patrols in Tulkarm and 1 village nr. Salfit in the morning, in 1...

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  • February 4, 2014

    An Israeli officer is killed by friendly fire nr. the border fence between the Gaza Strip and s. Israel. In the West Bank, IDF troops raid the protest village ‘Ayn Hiljeh and detain 18...

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  • November 25, 2013

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

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  • November 14, 2013

    In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops conduct a limited incursion nr. Khan Yunis, to level land close to the border fence. In response, Palestinians fire several mortar shells at the soldiers with 2...

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  • October 24, 2013

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

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  • August 26, 2013

    In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops conduct a limited incursion close to the border fence nr. Bayt Hanun, and level land before withdrawing. In the West Bank, IDF troops shoot and kill 3 Palestinian...

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  • June 28, 2013

    In the West Bank, IDF troops shoot and kill a Palestinian in Qalandia r.c. nr. Ramallah, during clashes sparked by an IDF arrest raid in the camp. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids...

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  • June 5, 2013

    In the Gaza Strip, Palestinians fire 3 mortar shells across the border into Israel, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 3 villages...

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  • April 3, 2013

    Israeli newspaper Ma’ariv reports that U.S. Secy. of State John Kerry is planning to visit Jerusalem and Ramallah ‘‘once every two weeks’’ in a bid to revive peace talks. His third trip to the...

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  • February 7, 2013

    Israeli media report that National Security Adviser Yaakov Amidror has recently privately warned PM Benjamin Netanyahu that settlement construction is causing Israel to lose support even among its...

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  • August 15, 2012

    The IDF conducts late-night patrols and house searches in 4 villages nr. Hebron (3 synchronized). (PCHR 8/16; OCHA 8/18; PCHR 8/30; OCHA 8/31)

    Fmr. Israeli national security adviser Uzi...

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  • June 21, 2012

    On the 2d day of his trip to Washington, Israeli vice PM Mofaz meets with U.S. national security adviser (NSA) Thomas Donilon. Pres. Obama joins the meeting unexpectedly and talks with Mofaz for...

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  • February 19, 2012

    Unidentified Palestinians fire 1 Qassam rocket fr. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or injuries. The IDF patrols in 2 villages nr. Ramallah, 2 nr. Tulkarm, 1 n r. Jenin in the morning; patrols...

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  • June 1, 2010

    The U.S. summons Israeli amb. Michael Oren and national security advisor Uzi Arad to a 4-hr. mtg. at the White House to discuss how to “contain fallout” fr. the flotilla raid and to find ways for...

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  • June 17, 2009

    In the West Bank, the IDF demolishes 3 Bedouin tents and 15 animal pens in the al-Hilwa area of the n. Jordan Valley, declaring it a closed military zone and ordering residents to leave the area;...

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  • June 15, 2007

    Firmly in control of Gaza, Hamas declares amnesty for Fatah leaders, except National Security Advisor (NSA) Dahlan, with the aim of quelling violence, releasing several of the 10 senior Fatah...

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  • June 14, 2007

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

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  • May 15, 2007

    In Gaza, Fatah-Hamas fighting intensifies, leaving at least 15 Palestinians dead. Among the incidents: PA presidential guardsmen fatally shoot Izzeddin al-Qassam Brigades cmdr. Ibrahim Maniah nr....

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  • March 1, 2004

    The IDF fires on residential areas of Gaza City; fires on stone-throwing youths in Burqa nr. Nablus. Unidentified gunmen assassinate Arafat’s close adviser Khalil Zabin, shooting him 12 times as...

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  • February 18, 2004

    In an incident in Dayr al-Balah, IDF soldiers grant permission to an international delegation, including 3 UN staff members, to visit and question a local Palestinian family, provided they stay...

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Unidentified Palestinians fly an incendiary device from Gaza into southern Israel attached to a cluster of balloons, where it lands in an open area in the Sdot Negev Regional Council. IDF troops detonate the device, causing no damage or injuries. In response, the Israeli Air Force conducts 3 air strikes on Hamas sites in Khan Yunis, Gaza City, and Bayt Hanun, causing extensive damage. Also along Gaza’s border, IDF troops violently disperse Palestinians gathering to continue the Great March of Return near al-Bureij refugee camp; 1 Palestinian is injured. They also open fire on Palestinian farmland near Rafah, Gaza City, Bayt Hanun, and Jabaliya refugee camp, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, following the shooting attack on an Israeli settler vehicle at the nearby Beit El checkpoint on 1/5, IDF troops conduct raids in al-Bireh overnight, confiscating surveillance tapes and sparking clashes with stone-throwing residents of the area throughout the day; several Palestinians are injured (1 critically). They also arrest 5 Palestinians and issue 1 arrest summons during late-night raids near Ramallah, Jenin, Hebron, and Tubas; and patrol near Hebron and Nablus. Israeli settlers uproot 60 olive and almond trees from a Palestinian grove near Hebron. (HA, JP, TOI, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, YA 1/6; PCHR 1/10)

Following a week of increasing tensions between Fatah and Hamas, the Fatah-dominated PA announces plans to remove its staff from the Rafah border crossing on 1/7. “This decision comes in the light of recent developments and brutal practices of the de facto gangs,” reads the PA statement. “Since we took over the Rafah crossing, Hamas has been obstructing the work of our crew there. We had to bear a lot in order to give the opportunity for the Egyptian effort to end the division.” The PA took control of the Gaza side of the Rafah border crossing in the context of the 10/12/17 Hamas-Fatah reconciliation agreement, which was never fully implemented. (JP, REU, WAFA 1/6)

U.S. ambassador to Israel David Friedman says that the Trump administration’s long-awaited Palestinian-Israeli peace plan will likely not be released for at least several more months. “We want to release it a way that gives it the best chance of getting a good reception,” he says, adding that the upcoming Israeli elections on 4/9 are “a factor, but not the only factor.” Meanwhile, U.S. national security advisor John Bolton meets with Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem. Following the meeting, Bolton says that the U.S.-Israel relationship has never been stronger than it is now under Netanyahu and U.S. president Donald Trump. (HA, JP, JP, TOI 1/6)

In an interview with CBS’s 60 Minutes, Egyptian president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi says that Egypt’s military coordination with Israel is at its “closest ever.” He adds, “We have a wide range of cooperation with the Israelis.” (AJ, CBS, HA 1/6)

Off Gaza’s coast, Israeli naval forces open fire on a small fleet of Palestinian boats sailing in a symbolic attempt to break the Israeli blockade. Meanwhile, thousands of Palestinians gather along Gaza’s border fence near Jabaliya refugee camp to cheer on the boats and continue the Great March of Return; 49 Palestinians are injured at sea and along the border fence. In the West Bank, Israeli settlers uproot 15 olive trees in a Palestinian grove outside Yatta village near Hebron. IDF troops conduct a raid at an elementary school in Hebron, disrupting classes and assaulting and injuring 1 Palestinian teacher. They also arrest 3 Palestinians and confiscate 1 vehicle during raids in Hebron and near Ramallah; and patrol near Hebron. (HA, MNA, TOI, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 9/10; PCHR 9/13)

The U.S. State Department announces that the PLO is no longer allowed to operate an office in Washington because the Palestinians “have not taken steps to advance the start of direct and meaningful negotiations with Israel.” In the same statement, the State Department also denounces the PLO for criticizing a “peace plan they have not yet seen” and refusing to engage with the Trump administration’s peace initiative. The decision to shutter the office was “also consistent with [Trump administration] and Congressional concerns with Palestinian attempts to prompt an investigation of Israel by the International Criminal Court,” according to the statement. Separately, U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton says that the U.S. plans to shield Israel from any ICC effort to investigate alleged Israeli war crimes and settlement growth (the ICC has been working on a preliminary examination of such allegations since 1/2015). (HA, HA, JP, JP, MNA, TOI, TOI, WSJ, YA 9/10)

PA prime minister Rami Hamdallah announces that the PA plans to cover the budget deficit facing Palestinian hospitals in East Jerusalem, following the U.S. decision on 9/8 to redirect $25 million in U.S. aid to “other priorities.” “We will continue to meet the basic and urgent needs of our people on every inch of our land,” he says. (MNA, WAFA 9/10)

The PA’s Committee Against the Wall and Settlements announces plans to appeal the Israeli High Court of Justice’s 9/5 decision to authorize the demolition of Khan al-Ahmar, a Bedouin village in the West Bank, at international courts. “[We] will not appeal this decision at Israeli courts anymore because they are a tool of the occupation to legalize theft of Palestinian land,” explains one senior committee member. (MNA, WAFA 9/10)

IDF troops arrest 3 Palestinians during raids and house searches nr. Hebron, and patrol nr. Hebron, Jenin, and Nablus. (PCHR 1/5)

U.S. dep. national security advisor Ben Rhodes says that the Obama admin. will not allow the UN to pass any res. formalizing the policies U.S. secy. of state Kerry presented on 12/28. Meanwhile, an Egyptian Foreign Ministry spokesperson says that the position Kerry laid out on 12/28 matches the Egyptian govt.’s. Saudi and Qatari officials make similar laudatory comments. (HA, TOI, WAFA 12/29; NYT, YA 12/30)

Late at night in Gaza, an armed group fires a rocket into s. Israel nr. Ashqelon, causing no damage. The IAF then launches air strikes on 2 “terrorist infrastructure” targets in c. and n. Gaza, according to the IDF; 1 Palestinian woman is lightly injured. Earlier in the day, Dutch FM Bert Koenders visits Gaza to inaugurate a new Dutch scanning machine donated to Israel for use at the Kerem Shalom border crossing. He says the scanner will allow for an increase in the amount of materials that can be shipped into Gaza for reconstruction purposes. Koenders also tours several UNRWA sites throughout Gaza. In the West Bank, IDF troops arrest a Palestinian woman after she stabs and lightly injures an Israeli soldier in n. Ramallah. Later, they raid her home nr. Ramallah. The IDF patrols in 2 villages nr. Hebron and 1 nr. Ramallah during the day. Along the Syria-Israel border, IDF troops raid the al-Shahar r.c., which houses internally displaced Syrians in the UN-administered buffer zone. They evacuate the camp and demolish several tents. (HA, MNA 7/15; HA, MNA, TOI, YA 7/16; AP 7/17; EI 7/20; PCHR 7/30)

U.S. national security advisor Susan Rice says that the U.S. is looking forward to discussing with Israel possible ways of increasing Israeli security, following the P5+1’s deal with Iran on 7/14. (JP, JTA, REU 7/16)

In the West Bank, Israeli forces arrest a Palestinian late at night after he allegedly attempts to stab an Israeli soldier at Qalandia checkpoint nr. Jerusalem. During the day, the IDF patrols in Yatta and 1 village each nr. Ramallah and Hebron. (MNA 7/10; PCHR 7/15)

Israel’s Defense Ministry lifts its gag order on the news of 2 Israeli civilians—a Palestinian bedouin and a Jewish Ethiopian—allegedly being held in Gaza. The Israeli govt. holds Hamas responsible for the men and reportedly lifts the order in the hope that it might lead to negotiations over their release. Hamas does not confirm it is holding the men. (HA, JP, MNA, NYT, TOI, YA 7/9; TOI, YA 7/10)

A senior Israeli official says that the Israeli govt. has changed its position on cooperating with the ICC’s preliminary examination on alleged war crimes committed in the oPt. The govt. will now begin opening contacts with ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda to make its position clear to the court, but only on the subject of jurisdiction. (HA 7/9; AFP 7/10)

U.S. secy. of state John Kerry delivers a statement on the status of the P5+1/Iran negotiations in Vienna. He says that the negotiations will continue, but does not set a new deadline. U.S. chief negotiator Wendy Sherman briefs Israel’s national security adviser Cohen on the talks. Sherman last briefed Cohen at the end of 6/2015. (HA 7/9; AP, HA 7/10; JP 7/11)

In the West Bank, Israeli forces uproot olive trees and demolish a car wash on about 20 dunams (around 5 acres) of Palestinian land nr. Bethlehem; confiscate grocery stalls along bypass road Route 60. IDF troops conduct raids and house searches in Jenin, Qalqilya, and 1 village nearby, and 1 village each nr. Ramallah and Bethlehem, arresting 8 Palestinians and assaulting 1; patrols in 2 villages nr. Jericho and 1 nr. Hebron. In n. Israel, Israeli forces demolish a Palestinian home in Kafr Kanna claiming that it was built without a permit. Palestinians in the village recently rebuilt the home after Israeli forces demolished it in 4/2015. (HA, MNA, REU, WAFA 6/15; PCHR 6/18)

Hebron mayor Dawud al-Zaatari announces that Israel’s Coordinator for Govt. Activities in the Territories (COGAT) office has approved the reopening of around 70 Palestinian shops in c. Hebron on 6/19. The IDF closed over 500 Palestinian shops in Hebron at the beginning of the 2d intifada in 2000. Meanwhile, the Knesset votes to extend for another year a law that allows the govt. to withhold citizenship or residency from Palestinians from the oPt who are married to Palestinian citizens of Israel (PCI). Originally passed in 2003, its authority has been extended every year since. (AFP 6/15; HA 6/17)

UNRWA comm.-gen. Pierre Krähenbühl reiterates that the agency is operating with a $101 m. deficit for core programs, and says that it might be forced to suspend all activities by 9/2015 unless donors give more money. UNRWA’s operating costs run at around $35 m. per mo. (MNA, UNRWA 6/15)

Cypriot pres. Nicos Anastasiades and Israeli PM Netanyahu meet in Israel and discuss the possibility of Netanyahu addressing the EU at an upcoming meeting in Brussels. The news of Anastasiades’s proposal to invite Netanyahu to Brussels will break on 6/29. (HA 6/19)

An Israeli delegation headed by National Security Adviser Yossi Cohen arrives in Washington, for talks with U.S. officials on the P5+1’s ongoing negotiations with Iran ahead of the 6/30 final agreement deadline. According to the Israeli official who announced the trip on 6/11, it is part of the effort to improve U.S.-Israeli communication surrounding the deal. (HA 6/11; JP 6/16)

In the West Bank, an Israeli settler hits a 5-year-old Palestinian girl with his car nr. Sinjil, and she later dies of her injuries at a nearby hospital. IDF troops shoot and wound 1 Palestinian during a patrol in Salfit. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 1 village nr. Ramallah and al-Fawar r.c. nr. Hebron; patrols in 2 villages each nr. Hebron, Jericho and Ramallah, and in al-Bireh. (MNA 10/19; PCHR 10/23)

Israel’s DM Moshe Ya’alon departs for Washington for a 5-day visit. In a predeparture statement, Ya’alon says that no dispute should “cast a shadow” over the U.S.-Israel relationship, one “based on shared interests and values.” However, Ya’alon’s requests for meetings with VP Joe Biden, Secy. of State Kerry and National Security Adviser Susan Rice are denied. (AFP 10/19; JP 10/24)

In the West Bank, IDF troops demolish 7 buildings, including 5 residential rooms nr. Nablus, displacing 4 families (27 people). The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in Nur Shams r.c. and 1 village nr. Tulkarm, and in Nablus and 1 village each nr. Bethlehem, Jenin, and Ramallah at night; patrols in 1 village nr. Hebron in the afternoon, and in 2 villages each nr. Hebron and Jericho, and 1 village each nr. Bethlehem, Jenin, Ramallah, and Tulkarm at night. In East Jerusalem, Palestinians reopen a hole in the separation wall in Abu Dis, prompting Israeli forces to fire tear gas and stun grenades, injuring 7. (MNA 5/12; PCHR 5/15)

PA Pres. Abbas meets a Hamas delegation in Ramallah, including ‘Aziz Dwayk, the speaker of the Palestinian Legislative Council. This is the 1st meeting between Abbas and Hamas leaders in 2 years. Palestinian sources tell the media that a unity govt. will be announced before the end of 5/2014, and that it will consist of 15–16 ministers. (JP, MEMO 5/12) 

At an Israeli Independence Day celebration organized by the Israeli Embassy in Washington, U.S. National Security Adviser Rice says that Iran must agree to “verifiable action” to satisfy concerns about its nuclear program, as part of a final deal. Meanwhile, representatives of the IAEA and Iran hold a meeting to review progress on implementing transparency measures. No details are released. (AP, REU 5/12)

Off the coast of the Gaza Strip nr. Khan Yunis, Israeli naval vessels open fire on Palestinian fishermen, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 2 villages nr. Qalqilya at night; patrols in 1 village nr. Ramallah in the morning, and in 3 villages nr. Hebron and 2 villages nr. Ramallah at night. (PCHR 5/15)

U.S. Special Envoy Martin Indyk blames both Israelis and Palestinians for not being ready to make “gut-wrenching compromises necessary to achieve peace,” in remarks made at the Washington Institute for Near East Peace, a D.C.-based think tank. Indyk also says that U.S. Secy. of State Kerry believes defining borders of a Palestinian state and establishing security arrangements for Israel are “essential” for resuming peace talks. (AFP, HA, REU 5/8)

U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice meets with PA Pres. Abbas in Ramallah and tells him that any unity govt. must recognize Israel, renounce violence, and adhere to previous agreements. Meanwhile, Pres. Abbas says in a televised interview that the Palestinians are ready to resume negotiations under the condition that Israel releases the 4th batch of Palestinian prisoners and halts settlement construction for 3 mos. (JP, MNA 5/8)

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

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

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

In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 2 villages nr. Hebron and 1 village nr. Bethlehem at night; patrols in Tulkarm and 1 village nr. Salfit in the morning, in 1 village nr. Hebron in the afternoon, and in 4 villages nr. Hebron, Nablus and 1 village and Balata r.c. nearby, 2 villages nr. Qalqilya and Tulkarm at night. Jewish settlers from Yitzhar chop down an estimated 60 olive trees nr. Nablus. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces violently disperse Palestinian demonstrators in al-‘Izzariya, a protest in support of defending al-Aqsa mosque from Jewish extremists. There are no serious injuries. (MNA 4/27; PCHR 4/30)

The PLO Central Council in Ramallah adopts a plan to pursue efforts to join 63 UN bodies and international treaties, according to a public statement issued on the final day of a 2-day meeting. Separately, PA Pres. Abbas issues a statement to mark Holocaust Day, denouncing the Nazi genocide. Israeli PM Netanyahu dismisses the comments during an interview with U.S. television network CBS, and says that Israel will not negotiate with a Palestinian govt. backed by Hamas. Meanwhile, IDF Maj.-Gen. Yoav Mordechai tells a meeting of the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Subcmte. on Judea and Samaria that construction plans for 19 Palestinian villages in Area C of the West Bank have been frozen in response to the reconciliation deal. In addition, U.S. Dep. National Security Adviser Tony Blinken tells CNN that the U.S. is ready to suspend aid to the PA if a unity govt. backed by Hamas fails to recognize Israel. U.S. Special Envoy Indyk leaves Israel for consultations in Washington. EU foreign affairs chief Ashton releases a statement expressing concern over the latest developments in the peace process, and reiterates EU support for the U.S.-led peace talks. She also welcomes the Palestinian unity govt., affirming that it must abide by the principles of nonviolence, recognition of Israel, and commitment to previous agreements. (AFP, JP, REU, WAFA, YA 4/27; HA 4/28)

Remarks made by U.S. Secy. of State Kerry on 4/25 at a private meeting in Washington are published by the Daily Beast, in which he says that without a 2-state solution soon, Israel risks becoming an “apartheid state.” In response, pro-Israel lobby group AIPAC says it is “deeply troubled” by the comments. (HA, NYT 4/28)

An Israeli officer is killed by friendly fire nr. the border fence between the Gaza Strip and s. Israel. In the West Bank, IDF troops raid the protest village ‘Ayn Hiljeh and detain 18 participants. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 1 village nr. Hebron and al-Fara‘a r.c. nr. Tubas at night; patrols in 1 village nr. Jenin in the morning, and 1 village nr. Hebron at night. During the raid in al-Fara‘a r.c., soldiers clash with residents, leaving 2 Palestinians wounded by live ammunition. In East Jerusalem, around 30 Israeli intelligence officers enter Haram al-Sharif, while separately a group of 17 Israelis enter the compound under armed guard. (HA, MNA 2/4; PCHR 2/6)

U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice tweets in defense of Secy. of State Kerry, following criticism from Israeli politicians. Rice states that attacks on Kerry are “totally unfounded and unacceptable” and that the U.S. govt. rejects “efforts to boycott or delegitimize Israel.” Meanwhile, Hamas official Salah Bardaweel tells the media that the organization will not accept any agreement that Abbas might sign with Israel. (JP 2/4)

The U.S. State Dept. confirms that top Syria diplomat Amb. Robert Ford will retire by the end of the month. He has been amb. to Syria since 1/2011, but left Damascus in 2/2012. (AP 2/4)

The Egyptian army shoots and kills 21 militants in 2 villages in c. Sinai during a raid on the area. (MNA 2/4)

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

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

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

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

In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops conduct a limited incursion nr. Khan Yunis, to level land close to the border fence. In response, Palestinians fire several mortar shells at the soldiers with 2 landing inside Israel, causing no damage or injuries, an attack claimed by Palestinian Islamic Jihad. In response, the IAF conducts an air strike against 2 sites in open land, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 1 village each nr. Jenin and Qalqilya in the afternoon, and in Hebron at night; patrols in 1 village nr. Hebron and in Qalqilya in the afternoon, and in 2 villages and al-‘Arub r.c. nr. Hebron at night. Israeli forces also cut down 100 olive trees in Ya‘bad nr. Jenin. (AFP, JP, MNA 11/14; PCHR 11/21)

White House National Security Adviser Susan Rice attributes in part “increased tensions on the ground” in Israel and the oPt to “recent settlement announcements,” in remarks to the Middle East Institute think tank in Washington. Rice affirms that the U.S. “does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlement activity.” (ToI 11/15)

Russian pres. Vladimir Putin and Syrian pres. Bashar al-Asad discuss plans for the proposed “Geneva 2” peace conference during a telephone call. No significant details are divulged. (REU 11/14)

In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops open fire on Palestinian fishermen nr. Bayt Lahiya, causing no damage or injuries. IDF troops also conduct a limited incursion nr. al-Maghazi in c. Gaza to level land, before withdrawing. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 1 village each nr. Jericho and Qalqilya in the afternoon, and in Tulkarm and 1 nearby village, and 1 village each nr. Hebron, Jenin and Ramallah at night. Jewish settlers attack farmers in Burin village nr. Nablus, injuring 1. In East Jerusalem, Jewish right-wing extremists escorted by Israeli police tour the al-Aqsa compound. (MNA 10/24; PCHR 10/31)

An unnamed Israeli official confirms that the govt. will press ahead with plans to build in the so-called settlement blocs and East Jerusalem, claiming that such construction is in accordance with agreements reached as talks recommended. Meanwhile, the Financial Times reports that the PA has sent letters to 50 countries urging them to clamp down on companies doing business with West Bank settlements, citing an unnamed Palestinian official. (HA, FT, REU 10/24)

The White House hosts a meeting of Senate cmte. leaders’ aides as part of a drive to get new sanctions targeting Iran delayed. At the same time, dep. national security adviser to Pres. Obama Ben Rhodes tells a conference in Washington that the U.S. will not be easing sanctions until Tehran takes “concrete steps.” (REU 10/24)

Gunmen kill an Egyptian policeman in al-Arish, while separately, an explosive device injures 2 border guards nr. Rafah. (MNA 10/24)

In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops conduct a limited incursion close to the border fence nr. Bayt Hanun, and level land before withdrawing. In the West Bank, IDF troops shoot and kill 3 Palestinian civilians and wound 18 others including 5 children during an arrest raid in Qalandia r.c. nr. Jerusalem. One of those killed was an UNRWA employee, the agency reveals. The IDF claims that its forces were met by a rioting crowd of some 1,500 camp residents throwing stones and petrol bombs. In Aida r.c. nr. Bethlehem, IDF troops shoot and wound 2 Palestinians with rubber-coated metal bullets during protests against the deaths in Qalandia. Meanwhile, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in Hebron in the afternoon, and in 1 village nr. Bethlehem at night, patrols in Tulkarm in the morning, and in 2 villages nr. Jenin and 1 village nr. Jericho in the afternoon, and in Jenin at night. In a raid on Sanur village nr. Jenin, IDF troops clash with residents, shooting and wounding 2 Palestinians with rubber-coated metal bullets. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces demolish 2 homes in al-Tur. (AFP, HA, MNA, REU 8/26; PCHR 8/29)

In response to the killings in Qalandia, an unnamed Palestinian official tells news agencies that talks scheduled for today are canceled. However, U.S. State Dept. spokesperson Marie Harf categorically denies that any meeting was canceled. Israeli television subsequently reports that Israeli and Palestinian officials had met in the morning before the news broke of the Qalandia raid. An unnamed Palestinian official also subsequently confirms to Xinhua News Agency that the 2 teams met in Saeb Erakat’s house in Jericho. Meanwhile, Egyptian FM Nabil Fahmi holds talks with Pres. Abbas in Ramallah, and relays a message from interim Egyptian pres. Adly Mansour, thanking Abbas for supporting the military coup that ousted Morsi. (HA, JP, REU 8/26; MNA 8/28)

An Israeli delegation headed by outgoing National Security Adviser Yaakov Amidror arrives in Washington for high-level talks with U.S. officials. Discussions are expected to focus on Syria, the Iranian nuclear program and future talks with Tehran, and the role of Hizballah in the Syrian civil war. U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice is coordinating talks on the U.S. side. (HA 8/26)

UN chemical weapons inspectors visit 1 of the sites in Syria allegedly targeted last week by chemical weapons. The convoy came under sniper fire on the initial attempt, but the team successfully visited the Damascus suburb Ghouta. The UN team’s work includes collecting samples of munitions fragments and debris and taking testimonies. Meanwhile, U.S. Secy. of State John Kerry says that Pres. Obama believes there must be “accountability” for those using “the world’s most heinous weapons,” and that the pres. is consulting with allies about how best to act. (AP, REU, WP 8/26)

In the West Bank, IDF troops shoot and kill a Palestinian in Qalandia r.c. nr. Ramallah, during clashes sparked by an IDF arrest raid in the camp. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 4 villages nr. Hebron at night; patrols in 1 village nr. Jenin in the morning, and in 1 village each nr. Hebron and Salfit 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 (1 injury from tear gas canister) and Kafr Qaddum (2 injuries from rubber-coated metal bullets). (MNA 6/28; PCHR 7/4)

U.S. Secy. of State John Kerry conducts further shuttle diplomacy, holding talks in Amman with Palestinian pres. Mahmud Abbas followed by discussions in Jerusalem with Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu, which are also attended by Justice Minister Tzipi Livni, National Security Adviser Ya’akov Amidror, and Special Envoy Yitzhak Molcho. Kerry meets separately with Israeli pres. Shimon Peres. Meanwhile, director of the Palestinians’ High Coordination Cmte. for Prisoners’ Release Amin Shuman says that Israelis and Palestinians have held secret talks about freeing prisoners detained before 1993. (AFP, HA, MNA, REU 6/28)

Three people are killed and hundreds injured as violent clashes take place between supporters and opponents of Egyptian pres. Mohamed Morsi, with the Muslim Brotherhood office ransacked in Alexandria. (NYT 6/28)

In the Gaza Strip, Palestinians fire 3 mortar shells across the border into Israel, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 3 villages, al-‘Arub r.c. nr. Hebron, 1 village nr. Ramallah, and 1 village nr. Tulkarm at night; patrols in 1 village nr. Bethlehem in the morning, in 2 villages nr. Tulkarm in the afternoon, and in 1 village nr. Hebron at night. (MNA 6/5; PCHR 6/13)

U.S. Pres. Barack Obama chooses Susan Rice as his new national security adviser and will nominate Samantha Power, a National Security Council staffer, to replace Rice as amb. to the UN. (REU 6/5) 

Unidentified persons fire 2 mortar shells into an open area nr. the border between Syria and the Israeli-occupied Syrian Golan Heights. The IDF investigates on which side of the border the shells fell. (YA 6/5)

Anonymous Jordanian officials tell the media that the U.S. will send anti-missile batteries to Amman in preparation for an annual joint military exercise, some of which will be kept in the country to boost the country’s defense capabilities in light of potential spillover from the Syrian civil war. (AP 6/5)

Israeli newspaper Ma’ariv reports that U.S. Secy. of State John Kerry is planning to visit Jerusalem and Ramallah ‘‘once every two weeks’’ in a bid to revive peace talks. His third trip to the region in 2 weeks (3/4, 3/24) begins 4/6. (AFP, AP 4/3)

Israeli soldiers stationed at a military post shoot and kill a Palestinian teenager nr. Tulkarm, after what the IDF says was a firebomb attack (an account disputed by witnesses). A Fatah-called general strike is observed in Hebron and East Jerusalem, as protests continue following the death of prisoner Maysara Abuhamdieh. Palestinians protesting the death clash with IDF forces in and around Hebron, in Nablus and Tulkarm, nr. Bethlehem, and outside Ofer prison nr. Ramallah (where 7 are injured with rubber bullets). In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in and around Hebron and nearby al-‘Arub r.c. in the afternoon, and in 1 village nr. Hebron at night; conducts house searches and arrest raids in al-‘Arub r.c. and 1 village nr. Hebron, in 1 village nr. Ramallah, and in Tulkarm at night. Unidentified Palestinian militants fire 2 rockets from Gaza into Israel, causing no injuries or damage. (HA, MNA 4/3; HA, PCHR 4/4)

A source in the office of Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu says that special envoy to Turkey Joseph Ciechanover and National Security Adviser Yaakov Amidror will go to Ankara on 4/11 for the start of talks on restoring Turkish-Israeli ties. (HA 4/3)

U.S. and Jordanian officials say that the two countries are training Syrian opposition forces that could be used to establish a future buffer zone alongside Syria’s southern border. (WP 4/3)

Israeli media report that National Security Adviser Yaakov Amidror has recently privately warned PM Benjamin Netanyahu that settlement construction is causing Israel to lose support even among its strongest allies in the West. Sources in Netanyahu’s office do not deny the substance of Amidror’s remarks, but say that they should not be seen as a hint that the PM is considering a settlement freeze to help start negotiations. (HA 2/7, 2/8)

Hamas official Izzat al-Rishq says that Fatah and Hamas will meet in Cairo on 2/10 to discuss the composition of a unity government. On 2/8, the discussion will focus on PLO reform. Meanwhile, an anonymous PA official tells Agence France-Presse that PA security forces have arrested more than 25 Hamas mbrs. over the past 48 hours. Earlier in the week, IDF forces arrested another 25 Hamas mbrs. in the West Bank, including 3 mbrs. of the PC from the Hamas-affiliated Reform and Change party. (AFP, MNA 2/7)

Islamic Jihad politburo mbr. Shaykh Nafith Azzam says that the group may run in the next elections of the PLO’s Palestine National Council (PNC) if certain conditions related to the political program, decision-making mechanism, and structure of the PLO are met. Azzan says PNC elections are necessary, particularly as the council represents Palestinians in Palestine and in the diaspora. (MNA 2/7)

In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 3 villages nr. Jenin and 1 village each nr. Jericho and Ramallah, 1 village nr. Jenin in the afternoon, and in 2 villages each nr. Jenin and Tulkarm, 1 village nr. Jericho at night; conducts house searches and arrest raids in Jenin in the morning. (PCHR 2/14)

The IDF conducts late-night patrols and house searches in 4 villages nr. Hebron (3 synchronized). (PCHR 8/16; OCHA 8/18; PCHR 8/30; OCHA 8/31)

Fmr. Israeli national security adviser Uzi Arad warns that Pres. Obama has only a ‘‘brief window of opportunity’’ to dissuade PM Netanyahu and DM Barak against striking Iran, saying Obama must quickly impose stiffer sanctions and publicly declare his willingness to use military force. Analysts say (NYT 8/16) that ‘‘Dayan’s assessment seems to buttress the theory that the collective saber rattling is part of a campaign to pressure the Obama administration.’’ (NYT 8/16)

On the 2d day of his trip to Washington, Israeli vice PM Mofaz meets with U.S. national security adviser (NSA) Thomas Donilon. Pres. Obama joins the meeting unexpectedly and talks with Mofaz for 35 mins. about his recent calls to resume negotiations. (WJW 6/28)

Violence on the Gaza border is down significantly, with the 6/20 cease-fire generally seeming to hold. The IDF reports 7 Qassam rockets fired into Israel during the day, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, Ulpana settlers agree to the deal brokered by YESHA on 6/20 to evacuate their outpost voluntarily. The IDF patrols in 4 villages nr. Ramallah and 1 nr. Jericho in the morning; and in Tulkarm, 1 nearby village, 2 villages nr. Ramallah, and 1 nr. Qalqilya late at night. (HA 6/21; PCHR 6/28; OCHA 6/29)

Unidentified Palestinians fire 1 Qassam rocket fr. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or injuries. The IDF patrols in 2 villages nr. Ramallah, 2 nr. Tulkarm, 1 n r. Jenin in the morning; patrols in 2 villages nr. Jenin (firing tear gas and percussion grenades at stone-throwing youths in 1 instance), 2 nr. Qalqilya, and 1 nr. Tulkarm in the afternoon; and patrols in 1 village nr. Jenin late in the evening; and conducts arrest raids, house searches in Tulkarm (targeting Islamic Jihad mbrs.) and 1 nr. Jenin late in the evening. Jewish settlers vandalize a Baptist church and 3 cars in East Jerusalem. (JP 2/20; PCHR 2/23; OCHA 2/24; JPI 3/2)

U.S. National Security Adviser Thomas Donilon, Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) chmn. Gen. Michael Dempsey, and British FM William Hague are in Israel for talks on Iran and Syria, specifically urging Israel not to launch a preemptive attack on Iran. (WP, WT 2/20; WT 2/29)

The U.S. summons Israeli amb. Michael Oren and national security advisor Uzi Arad to a 4-hr. mtg. at the White House to discuss how to “contain fallout” fr. the flotilla raid and to find ways for Israel to ease the siege of Gaza without harming Israeli security. Separately, U.S. Secy. of State Hillary Clinton phones Israeli DM Ehud Barak to urge Israel to be very careful about what it says and does in the coming days to defuse the situation as quickly as possible. (WP 5/27; IFM 6/1; NYT, WJW, WP 7/2)

In light of the 5/31 flotilla incident, Egypt says it will open its border with Gaza indefinitely as of 6/2 for unlimited travel for humanitarian purposes, though import of goods will remain restricted per Israeli demands. Overnight, unidentified Palestinians fire 1 Qassam rocket fr. Gaza into Israel, causing damage but no injuries. In response, the IDF carries out 2 air strikes and fires 7 tank shells on the launch site nr. Abasan in s. Gaza, killing 2 armed Palestinians; then sends troops 400 m into Gaza to clear lines of sight in the area. Later in the day, Islamic Jihad mbrs. fire 2 Qassam rockets fr. n. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or injuries; the IDF shells the launch site, killing 3 Islamic Jihad mbrs. Meanwhile, IDF troops on the s. Gaza border for unknown reasons fire into al-Shuka neighborhood in Rafah, wounding a 71 yr.-old-Palestinian woman inside her home. IDF troops on the n. Gaza border fire warning shots at Palestinians scavenging construction materials inside the Erez industrial zone, causing no reported injuries. The UN reports that in the previous wk., Hamas authorities in Gaza for unstated reasons shut down 6 Palestinian NGOs and confiscated some of their property; UN special coordinator for Middle East peace Robert Serry expresses concern over the impact on Palestinian civil society. The UN also reports that in the previous wk., 6 Palestinians were killed, 12 injured when a gas canister being smuggled through a tunnel on the Rafah border exploded; 1 Palestinian was killed and 2 were injured in a separate tunnel collapse. (JP 6/1; NYT 6/2; PCHR 6/3; OCHA 6/4)

In the West Bank, the IDF demolishes 3 Bedouin tents and 15 animal pens in the al-Hilwa area of the n. Jordan Valley, declaring it a closed military zone and ordering residents to leave the area; conducts synchronized late-night house searches in 3 villages s. and w. of Jenin, making no arrests; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in Nablus, firing a stun grenade into a Palestinian home, causing a fire that leaves significant damage. (OCHA, PCHR 6/18; OCHA, PCHR 6/25)

Israeli FM Avigdor Lieberman begins his first official visit to the U.S., holding extremely tense talks with Secy. of State Hillary Clinton and national security adviser (NSA) Gen. James Jones regarding U.S. demands for a complete settlement freeze. (Financial Times 6/18) 

Firmly in control of Gaza, Hamas declares amnesty for Fatah leaders, except National Security Advisor (NSA) Dahlan, with the aim of quelling violence, releasing several of the 10 senior Fatah political security officials captured earlier in the day; orders all mbrs. of the PA security forces in Gaza to continue to report for duty to provide law and order, albeit under Hamas cmdrs. Hamas also calls for the immediate release of kidnapped BBC correspondent Johnston. With fighting suspended, Palestinian crowds loot abandoned Fatah buildings, targeting in particular Dahlan’s home and Abbas’s presidential compound; Hamas mbrs. surround and prevent looting at Abbas’s Gaza residence. Some violence persists, with a Fatah mbr. thrown to his death from a high building by the family of a man he killed earlier; a Fatah security official commits suicide after learning that he was on a Hamas wanted list. Meanwhile, Egypt reinforces its forces on the border with Gaza with riot police, APCs, and water cannons, fearing that Palestinians will attempt to flee Gaza for Egypt en masse at the first opportunity. Israel temporarily opens the Erez crossing to allow Fatah officials to escape Gaza for Ramallah. In the West Bank, Abbas names Finance M Salam al-Fayyad as his new PM, charging him with forming a government; issues a presidential decree suspending articles of the Basic Law (the interim Palestinian constitution) requiring the new government to receive a vote of confidence from the PC (currently controlled by the Hamas-affiliated Change and Reform party). Fatah-Hamas tensions remain high in the West Bank, where heavily armed Fatah mbrs. patrol in Ramallah in a show of force; Fatah mbrs. ransack Change and Reform offices, Hamas-run charity organizations in several cities; kidnap at least 9 Hamas mbrs. AMB mbrs. fatally shoot a Hamas mbr. in Nablus. Inside Israel, the Israel Prisons Service separates Fatah, Hamas detainees to prevent rioting. Meanwhile, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches, patrols in villages around Jenin, firing on residential areas, causing no injuries. In Gaza, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in Dayr al-Balah; fires rubber-coated steel bullets, percussion grenades, tear gas at Palestinian, Israeli, international activists attending weekly nonviolent demonstrations against the separation wall in Bil‘in, injuring 2. (AP, HA, WP, QA 6/15; NYT, WP, WT 6/16; Interfax 6/16 in WNC 6/17; PCHR 6/21; NYT 7/9)

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

In Gaza, Fatah-Hamas fighting intensifies, leaving at least 15 Palestinians dead. Among the incidents: PA presidential guardsmen fatally shoot Izzeddin al-Qassam Brigades cmdr. Ibrahim Maniah nr. Qarni (Hamas claims he was assassinated, Fatah says he died in an exchange of gunfire); in retaliation, Hamas mbrs. attack a PA presidential guard training facility at the Qarni crossing with rockets, mortars, and RPGs, also firing on other PA security forces who come to the guardsmen’s aid, killing 8 national security officers. IDF troops on the Gaza border nearby fire on 2 guardsmen fleeing the scene toward the border fence, killing 1. Outside Abbas’s Gaza City offices, PA security forces loyal to Abbas halt, harass, shoot execution-style 2 Palestinian reporters for a pro-Hamas newspaper. A 12th Palestinian is killed in interfactional fighting in Gaza City. Across the Strip, Palestinian civilians stay in their homes and most stores close, while Fatah and Hamas gunmen take up strategic positions along roads and atop high buildings, and Egyptian mediators work to establish a new cease-fire. PA National Security Adviser Muhammad Dahlan, currently abroad, orders 500 Fatah-affiliated PSF mbrs. undergoing training in Egypt to return to Gaza immediately to help defend the pro-Abbas forces; Israel gives its consent for the forces to enter. Hamas also fires more than 20 rockets fr. Gaza into Israel, hitting a house and empty school, seriously wounding 1 Israeli, moderately wounding another. Meanwhile, in the West Bank, the IDF conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus, nr. Hebron. (BBC, HA, NYT, OCHA, WP 5/16; PCHR, WP 5/17; WP 5/18)

The IDF fires on residential areas of Gaza City; fires on stone-throwing youths in Burqa nr. Nablus. Unidentified gunmen assassinate Arafat’s close adviser Khalil Zabin, shooting him 12 times as he leaves his Gaza City office. Jewish settlers fr. Tekoa nr. Bethlehem seize, bulldoze 20 dunams of land in neighboring al-Rashayda. (VOP 3/1 in WNC 3/3; BBC, MM, NYT, WP, WT 3/2; VOP 3/2 in WNC 3/4; CSM, PR 3/3; PCHR 3/4; PR 3/17)

In Washington, Sharon chief of staff Dov Weisglass, Israel’s National Security Adviser Giora Eiland meet with U.S. Secy. of State Colin Powell, U.S. National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice to discuss “practical steps” to carry out Sharon’s disengagement plan. (WT 3/1; MM, NYT 3/2; WP 3/3; MM 3/5; HA, MM 3/10)

In an incident in Dayr al-Balah, IDF soldiers grant permission to an international delegation, including 3 UN staff members, to visit and question a local Palestinian family, provided they stay only 30 mins. and not enter the family’s home; the delegation complies, but as it is leaving, an IDF soldier deliberately shoots the 15 yr. old son of the family fr. a distance of 20 m., hitting him in the back, partially paralyzing him; the international team transports the boy to a Gaza City hospital. IDF also fires on residential areas of Brazil r.c., wounding an 11-yr.-old Palestinian boy; bulldozes 15 dunams of land, demolishes a Palestinian home nr. Jenin, 1 in Salfit nr. Nablus, a poultry farm in Dayr al-Balah; conducts arrest raids in Bayt Hanina, Gaza City, nr. Jenin. Armed Jewish settlers attack a Palestinian neighborhood in Hebron, seriously beating a 13-yr.-old Palestinian girl. In Jenin, unidentified assailants open fire on Palestinian Authority (PA) health minister Jawad al-Tibi, Palestinian Economic Council for Development and Reconstruction head Muhammad Ishtiyya during a visit to inaugurate a new hospital; neither is injured. (VOP 2/18 in WNC 2/20; PCHR 2/19; VOP 2/19 in WNC 2/21; LAW, PCHR 2/26; HA, DUS 2/28)

U.S. National Security Council Middle East Adviser Elliott Abrams, Dep. National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley, Asst. Secy. of State William Burns arrive in Israel for3days of talks with senior Israeli, Palestinian officials on Israeli PM Ariel Sharon plan for unilateral disengagement fr. Gaza. (MM 2/18; VOP 2/18 in WNC 2/20; BBC, HA, MM, WT 2/19; VOP 2/19 in WNC 2/21; MM, NYT, WP, WT 2/20; HA 2/22; WP 2/26; Forward 2/28)