In the West Bank, Israeli forces demolish a Palestinian greenhouse and another agricultural structure in Bayt Iksa near Jerusalem. IDF troops arrest a Palestinian who opens fire on an IDF post...
January 13, 2019Read more
December 17, 2018
In the West Bank, Israeli forces carry out the punitive demolition of part of the Tulkarm-area home of a Palestinian suspected of shooting and killing 2 Israeli settlers on 10/7 (IDF troops shot...Read more
December 19, 2014
In the Gaza Strip, Palestinians fire a rocket into s. Israel in the Eshkol region. Israel holds Hamas responsible and the IDF launches a latenight air strike at a Hamas military training site nr....Read more
September 19, 2014
In the Gaza Strip, unexploded Israeli ordnance kills 3 Palestinians and injures 2 others in e. Gaza City. IDF troops open fire at gravel collectors nr. the border fence e. of Bayt Lahiya, injuring...Read more
November 22, 2013
In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops open fire on Palestinians who were close to the border fence nr. Jabaliya r.c., injuring 2. In the West Bank, IDF troops conduct house searches and arrest raids in 1...Read more
December 3, 2012
Britain, Denmark, France, Spain, and Sweden summon the Israeli ambassadors to their countries to protest Israel’s settlement construction plans. An anonymous senior European diplomat tells the...Read more
January 10, 2012
The IDF makes a brief incursion into n. Gaza to level land and clear lines of sight along the border e. of Jabaliya town. In the West Bank, the IDF bulldozes Palestinian land in Azariyya (just...Read more
August 3, 2010
IDF troops on the Israeli side of the Erez crossing fire warning shots at Palestinians scavenging construction materials in the industrial zone, wounding 1 Palestinian. Late at night, 2 IDF drones...Read more
October 12, 2009
In the West Bank, IDF troops stationed atop Hebron homes occupied on 10/11 fire rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas at 10s of stone-throwing Palestinian youths who confront them, injuring 1...Read more
July 18, 2009
The IDF forces a Palestinian family to demolish their home in Sur Bahir on the outskirts of Jerusalem (displacing 9 persons), threatening them with a heavy fine if the IDF were to implement the...Read more
July 14, 2009
The IDF sends troops, bulldozers into n. Gaza to level land along the border nr. Bayt Hanun; troops fire toward nearby residential areas to keep Palestinians indoors, causing no injuries. The UN...Read more
July 16, 2008
The IDF conducts major late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus, firing on residential areas and stone-throwing youths who confront them wounding 2, arresting 30; also conducts...Read more
June 24, 2007
After Islamic Jihad fires several rockets fr. Gaza into Israel (causing no reported injuries), the IDF makes an air strike on a car in Gaza City assassinating Islamic Jihad mbr. Hussam Harb,...Read more
May 3, 2007
The IDF sends bulldozers, tanks into Gaza nr. Sufa crossing to level land; troops also discover and dismantle 2 roadside bombs. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in...Read more
May 1, 2007
The Israeli navy fires on Palestinian fishing boats off the coast of Nussayrat r.c., forcing them to return to shore. In the West Bank, the IDF shoots, wounds a Palestinian farmer working in his...Read more
July 13, 2006
Overnight, the IDF makes air strikes destroying the PA FMin. building in Gaza City, wounding 13 bystanders (including 6 children); makes an air strike on Khan Yunis, killing 1 Islamic Jihad mbr.,...Read more
November 16, 2000
Israeli-Palestinian clashes enter their 50th day, with the internal closure on Palestinian towns in the West Bank still in place. Israeli PM Ehud Barak tells Israelis to prepare for a...Read more
February 9, 1995
Remaining lands occupied by Israel are returned to Jordan at mtg. of the joint Jordanian-Israeli comm. on treaty implementation, armies deploy along newly demarcated border. 300 Israeli farmers...Read more
July 10, 1992
Fateh and Hamas reportedly reach agreement to end violence after massive efforts by Haydar 'Abd al-Shafi and NRC (see 7/8). Violence and threats on peace delegates continue. (ITV 7/10 in FBIS 7/13...Read more
April 22, 1986
Occupied Palestine/Israel: P.M. Peres tells 21-member Council of Europe, in Strasbourg, that Israel is willing for Gaza Strip residentso be given Jordanian...Read more
May 18, 1984
Occupied Palestine/Israel: Palestinian Heritage Week festival exhibit destroyed in Bir Zeit U. fire; arson suspected. Israeli army denies any involvement in Ain...Read more
June 7, 1982
Israeli troops seize Beaufort Castle, Nabatiyeh, Hasbaya; fighting continues in Tyre and nearby Palestinian refugee camps; air battle over Beirut suburbs between Israeli...Read more
In the West Bank, Israeli forces demolish a Palestinian greenhouse and another agricultural structure in Bayt Iksa near Jerusalem. IDF troops arrest a Palestinian who opens fire on an IDF post outside the nearby Ma’ale Adumim settlement; arrest 2 Palestinians during raids near Bethlehem and Hebron; and patrol near Bethlehem, Hebron, and Qalqilya. Israeli settlers cut down approximately 1,000 tree saplings from a Palestinian nature reserve outside Burqa village near Nablus. Settlers also uproot a number of olive trees in the courtyard of al-Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron. Separately, unidentified assailants open fire on a Palestinian police station in al-Ram near Jerusalem, sparking a firefight between PA police and the armed assailants; 1 Palestinian is killed (it’s unclear if he was a bystander or one of the assailants). Along Gaza’s border, IDF troops open fire on Palestinian farmers and shepherds working near Bayt Hanun, causing no injuries. An Israeli drone bombs a Hamas post near Khan Yunis, causing extensive damage. (MNA, MNA, MNA, MNA, TOI, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 1/13; PCHR 1/17)
A Palestinian succumbs to injuries sustained when IDF troops violently dispersed Palestinian protesters gathering along Gaza’s border several weeks ago. This brings the death toll stemming from the Great March of Return to 197. (WAFA 1/13; PCHR 1/17)
The IDF announces the conclusion of Operation Northern Shield, the operation formally launched on 12/4 to discover and demolish cross-border tunnels allegedly built by Hezbollah from southern Lebanon to northern Israel. An IDF spokesperson also announces the 1/12 discovery of a 6th major tunnel and says preparations are underway to demolish it. He says that this is the largest and most important tunnel discovered during the operation. Meanwhile, Lebanon’s Ambassador to the UN Amal Mudallali files a formal complaint with the UN Security Council over Israel’s construction of a concrete wall along the Israel-Lebanon border. Mudallali contends that the wall is a violation of UNSC Resolution 1701, which ended the 2006 Israel-Lebanon war. (HA, HA, JP, TOI, YA 1/13)
At the weekly meeting of Israel’s cabinet, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu confirms that Israel was responsible for the air strikes in Syria on 1/11. “The wave of recent attacks proves that we are determined more than ever to act against Iran in Syria,” he says, marking a rare instance of the Israeli government taking credit for an individual strike in Syria. Meanwhile, satellite photos depicting a demolished storehouse at the Damascus International Airport circulate in the Israeli media. (JP, YA 1/13; TOI 1/14)
In the West Bank, Israeli forces carry out the punitive demolition of part of the Tulkarm-area home of a Palestinian suspected of shooting and killing 2 Israeli settlers on 10/7 (IDF troops shot and killed the suspect during an arrest raid on 12/12). The demolition sparks clashes with Palestinian residents of the area; 3 Palestinians are arrested and 6 are injured. Separately, IDF troops arrest 20 Palestinians during raids near Ramallah, Hebron, Bethlehem, and Jenin; and patrol near Hebron throughout the day. Israeli settlers assault and severely injure a Palestinian after they force him out of his car outside Bethlehem. In the evening, hundreds of Palestinians gather along Gaza’s northern border to continue the Great March of Return and to cheer on 20 Palestinian boats sailing in a symbolic challenge to the Israeli blockade. IDF troops and Israeli naval forces violently disperse the demonstrations; 22 Palestinians are injured. Also off Gaza’s coast, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats near Jabaliya refugee camp and Khan Yunis, causing no damage or injuries. (MNA, MNA, TOI, WAFA, WAFA 12/17; EI, MNA, MNA 12/18; PCHR 12/20)
In response to the PA’s ban on Palestinian purchases of lamb from Israel on 12/2, Israel’s Agriculture Minister Uri Ariel imposes a ban on Palestinian fruit and vegetable imports. Ariel neglects to announce the ban to the public. Palestinian farmers export between 280 and 300 tons of produce to Israel per day, and the ban is expected to cost the Palestinian economy approximately NIS 1 million (approximately $265,545) per day. (JP 12/19; TOI 12/27)
After the IDF announced the discovery of a 4th Hezbollah-built cross-border tunnel on 12/16, UNIFIL states that 2 of the 4 were built in violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1701, which ended the 2006 Israel-Lebanon war. “UNIFIL has requested the Lebanese authorities to ensure urgent follow-up actions in accordance with the responsibilities of the Government of Lebanon pursuant to resolution 1701,” a UNIFIL statement reads. Earlier in the day, the Lebanese Armed Forces go on high alert after several Lebanese soldiers confront IDF troops installing barbed wire along the border near Mays al-Jabal village. UNIFIL forces are deployed to the scene to defuse the situation and prevent misunderstandings, according to a UNIFIL spokesperson. (AP, HA, TOI, TOI 12/17)
In the Gaza Strip, Palestinians fire a rocket into s. Israel in the Eshkol region. Israel holds Hamas responsible and the IDF launches a latenight air strike at a Hamas military training site nr. Khan Yunis, causing damage to the site and a nearby UNRWA school. It is the 1st Israeli bombing in Gaza since the 8/26 cease-fire ended OPE. In the West Bank, Palestinians gather in Turmus ‘Ayya, Silwad, and Ofer detention center to protest the death of a senior PA official on 12/10, sparking clashes with IDF troops in which 9 Palestinians are injured with rubbercoated metal bullets and 2 are detained. In Silwad, Israeli soldiers deliberately fire at electricity transformers, causing a power outage. Also, IDF troops violently disperse Palestinian, Israeli, and international protesters at weekly demonstrations against Israel’s separation wall, settlements, and occupation nr. Ramallah (Bil‘in, Nabi Salih, and Ni‘lin), Bethlehem, and Qalqilya (Kafr Qaddum), shooting 1 in Bil‘in with a rubber-coated metal bullet and 1 in Ni‘lin. The IDF conducts an arrest raid nr. Qalqilya; patrols nr. Ramallah, Hebron, Jericho, Tulkarm, and Qalqilya. Meanwhile, dozens gather in Balata r.c. to celebrate the 47th anniversary of the PFLP. In East Jerusalem, nearly 60,000 Palestinians pray at Haram al-Sharif, then march through the streets of the Old City in protest of Israeli policies regarding the site. Later, Israeli forces conduct house searches and arrest raids in the Old City, al-Wad, Silwan, and al-Bustan. Clashes break out between Israeli police and stone-throwing Palestinians late at night in Wadi al-Juz, Anata, and Silwan. Police injure 3 Palestinians with rubber-coated metal bullets and arrest 5. (AP, HA, MNA, 12/19; AFP, HA, MNA, WAFA 12/20; PCHR 12/25)
U.S. Pres. Obama signs into law the U.S.-Israel Strategic Partnership Act, which includes increased intelligence and military cooperation and new congressional oversight procedures. (TOI 12/20; IHY, JP, JTA 12/21)
The UNGApasses 2 nonbinding res. regarding the Arab-Israeli conflict and Palestinian affairs: the 1st calls on Israel to pay Lebanon $856.4 m. in damages related to an oil spill Israeli forces caused during the 2006 war; the 2d recognizes Palestinian sovereignty over the natural resources in the oPt. (AFP, WAFA 12/20)
A leaked report from the IAEA concludes that Iran is upholding commitments made to the P5+1 related to its disputed nuclear program. (JP, REU 12/18)
In the Gaza Strip, unexploded Israeli ordnance kills 3 Palestinians and injures 2 others in e. Gaza City. IDF troops open fire at gravel collectors nr. the border fence e. of Bayt Lahiya, injuring 2. Separately, Israeli forces conduct a limited incursion to level land close to the border fence nr. Khan Yunis. The IDF patrols in Jericho and 2 nearby villages, 2 villages nr. Ramallah, and 1 village nr. Hebron. Also, IDF troops violently disperse Palestinian, Israeli, and international protesters at weekly demonstrations against Israel’s separation wall, settlements, and occupation in 4 villages nr. Ramallah (Bil‘in, Nabi Salih, Nil‘in, and Wadi Fukin), 1 village nr. Bethlehem (al-Ma‘sara) and 1 village nr. Qalqilya (Kafr Qaddum). There are no serious injuries. (MNA 9/19; PCHR 9/25)
French Pres. Hollande meets with PA Pres. Abbas in Paris to discuss Abbas’s plans to go to the UN and ICC. In a joint press conference, Hollande says that a “solution to the conflict” between the Israelis and Palestinians will be put to the UNSC. (AFP, HA 9/19)
Reps. of Iran and the P5+1 group meet in New York for talks on Iran’s disputed nuclear program, with just weeks to go until the 11/24 deadline for a deal over Iran’s nuclear program to be reached. It is the 1st round of talks since the 7/20 deadline was extended. Participants suggest that the parties are close, but with difficult final issues still to resolve. Meanwhile, the IAEA reports that Iran is continuing to take action in compliance with the interim agreement. (AFP, AP, REU 9/19)
In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops open fire on Palestinians who were close to the border fence nr. Jabaliya r.c., injuring 2. In the West Bank, IDF troops conduct house searches and arrest raids in 1 village nr. Jenin at night; patrols in 1 village nr. Hebron in the afternoon, and at night in 1 village each nr. Hebron, Jericho, and Ramallah. The night raid in Ramallah provokes clashes, leaving 1 Palestinian injured with live ammunition. IDF troops violently disperse Palestinian, Israeli, and international protesters at weekly demonstrations against Israel’s separation wall, settlements and occupation in 3 villages nr. Ramallah (Bil‘in, Nabi Salih, and Ni‘lin), 1 village nr. Qalqilya (Kafr Qaddum), and 1 village nr. Bethlehem (al-Ma‘sara). There are no serious injuries, except in Bil‘in (1 wounded by a bullet) and Kafr Qaddum (2 struck by tear gas canisters). Meanwhile, around 200 Jewish settlers gather outside Yabad village nr. Jenin and burn tires, blocking a road. In East Jerusalem, IDF troops open fire on Palestinians protesting against the occupation nr. Abu Dis, in Qalandia, and in Issawiyya, injuring dozens with rubber-coated metal bullets and stun grenades. Palestinians respond by throwing stones and burning tires. (MNA 11/22; PCHR 11/28)
Israel’s Labor Party elects former minister Isaac Herzog as its new leader, defeating incumbent Shelly Yachimovich with 58.5% of the vote compared to the latter’s 41.5%. Herzog announces in his victory speech that the Labor Party will not join the governing coalition led by PM Netanyahu. (REU, YA 11/22)
Russian FM Lavrov arrives in Geneva to join diplomats struggling to finalize a deal between Iran and the P5+1 powers, with remaining disputes including Iran’s right to produce nuclear fuel, the fate of the Arak heavy-water reactor project, and the extent of sanctions relief. (AP, REU 11/22)
Six large Islamist opposition groups in Syria declare a new Islamic Front, the biggest alliance of rebel fighters to date. The group is distinct from both the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and the al-Qa‘ida-linked factions. (REU 11/22)
Muslim Brotherhood supporters hold protest rallies across Egypt to mark 100 days since the mass killings by security forces in 8/2013 (see the QU in JPS 169). Clashes with Muslim Brotherhood opponents leave 2 dead, 1 in Cairo and 1 in Suez. Meanwhile, Hamas PM Haniyeh says that his organization is not breaking ties with Egypt, despite the recent conflict with Cairo’s military rulers. (AP, MNA 11/22)
Britain, Denmark, France, Spain, and Sweden summon the Israeli ambassadors to their countries to protest Israel’s settlement construction plans. An anonymous senior European diplomat tells the Israeli newspaper Ha’Aretz that Britain and France see E1 development as a ‘‘red line’’ and feel Israel is acting ungratefully after the support it received during Operation Pillar of Defense. Former U.S. amb. to Israel Dan Kurtzer tells Ha’Aretz that the Obama admin. is angry over an Israeli official’s suggestion in a recent briefing that Israel generated the E1 plan in anticipation that Obama would refuse to reaffirm Bush’s 2004 letter to Sharon (which Israel views as U.S. approval of Israeli settlement expansion in areas it intends to keep under final status; see the Quarterly Update in JPS 132), when he entered office in 1/2009, as indeed occurred. Meanwhile, a source in the Israeli PM’s Office says there will be no retraction of the E1 construction plan. (HA, NYT, YA 12/3)
The dep. mayor of Jerusalem reveals that the municipality is expected to give final approval to a new settlement in occupied East Jerusalem called Givat Hamatos, the 1st of its kind since Har Homa in 1997. Located between Talpiot and Bayt Safafa, the new settlement will be on the agenda of the planning comm. on 12/19. In addition, Jewish settlers occupy a 5-story building in the Har Homa/Jabal Mukabir neighborhood of occupied East Jerusalem that had previously been sold to a settler organization. (HA, JP 12/3)
Twelve Fatah mbrs. return to the Gaza Strip after fleeing in the 2007 conflict with Hamas. Returning Fatah mbr. Mahmoud Musleh says that around 450 Fatah mbrs. who fled to countries across the region, as well as to the West Bank, will return once procedures are complete. (MNA 12/3)
PM Ismail Haniyeh appeals to Arab states to help pay for reconstruction of the Gaza Strip following damage inflicted during Operation Pillar of Defense, estimated at $250–545 m. (REU 12/3)
In the Gaza Strip, the IDF shoots a Palestinian child nr. al-Bureij r.c. close to the border fence, causing minor injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF kills a Palestinian civilian when a military jeep hits a car traveling on the Nablus– Ramallah road. The IDF patrols in 1 village nr. Ramallah in the morning, and in Jericho and 1 nearby village, 3 villages nr. Ramallah, and 2 villages nr. Jenin later in the day; conducts night-time house searches and arrest raids in 1 village each nr. Hebron and Tulkarm, and in Nablus and Balata r.c. (MNA 12/3; PCHR 12/6)
UN secy.-gen. Ban Ki-moon accuses the Syrian government of serious violations of the 1974 agreement separating Israeli and Syrian forces in the Golan Heights. In a UNSC report, Ban expresses concern about recent incidents across the cease-fire line, and recommends a 6-mo. extension of the UN peacekeeping force in the Golan Heights. (AP 12/3)
The IDF makes a brief incursion into n. Gaza to level land and clear lines of sight along the border e. of Jabaliya town. In the West Bank, the IDF bulldozes Palestinian land in Azariyya (just outside Jerusalem) for construction of a “biblical garden”; patrols in 1 village nr. Jenin, firing tear gas and percussion grenades at stone-throwing youths who confront them; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Hebron. Palestinian, Israeli, and international activists hold a nonviolent march fr. Jericho toward Ramallah to highlight freedom of movement issues; the IDF blocks the march just outside Jericho and arrests 5 Palestinians. (PCHR 1/12; OCHA 1/13)
Briefing the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Comm., IDF chief of staff Gantz says the IDF is preparing for a massive influx of refugees into the Golan Heights if Syrian pres. Bashar al-Asad falls, which in the IDF’s assessment is “inevitable.” He says Israel would try to keep the refugees in a strategic buffer zone between the Golan and Syria, and would likely move Alawite refugees to the divided Alawite city of Ghajar straddling the Lebanon-Israel border to prevent any conflict between Alawis and the Druze population of the Golan. (NYT, WT 1/11)
Meanwhile, the Knesset passes an amendment to an existing law to discourage infiltrators that makes it legal to detain illegal migrants and their children for up to 3 yrs. without trial. Though directed at African migrant workers attempting to enter Israel fr. Egypt, Israeli rights groups fear the measure could be used to detain refugees fleeing violence in Syria. (NYT 1/11)
IDF troops on the Israeli side of the Erez crossing fire warning shots at Palestinians scavenging construction materials in the industrial zone, wounding 1 Palestinian. Late at night, 2 IDF drones fire missiles at a group of armed Palestinians nr. the border e. of Abasan, killing 1 armed Palestinian, wounding 2. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in Salfit before dawn, photographing a PASF building; conducts late-night patrols in 2 villages nr. Tulkarm, making no arrests; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in Ramallah, nr. Jericho. (PCHR 8/5; OCHA 8/13)
An IDF officer, 3 Lebanese soldiers, and 1 Lebanese journalist are killed and 1 IDF platoon commander is critically wounded in a clash on the s. Lebanon border, marking the most serious confrontation since the 2006 Lebanon war. (IFM, JTA 8/3; IFM, NYT, WP 8/4; NYT 8/5; HA 8/9; JPI 8/13)
In the West Bank, IDF troops stationed atop Hebron homes occupied on 10/11 fire rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas at 10s of stone-throwing Palestinian youths who confront them, injuring 1 Palestinian teenager. The IDF also ambushes several Palestinian vehicles attempting to evade IDF checkpoints to transport workers to jobs in Israel, burning and destroying 3 of them; conducts late-night raids, house searches nr. Nablus, Hebron, Jericho, and Jenin, arresting 10 Palestinians. Jewish settlers fr. the unauthorized settlement outpost of Mitzpe Ami nr. Qalqilya set fire to a Palestinian olive tree field and block firemen fr. reaching the area, destroying as many as 250 trees; Israeli police arrest 13 settlers who refuse to leave the area. Jewish settlers fr. Kiryat Arba stone Palestinians harvesting olives nr. Hebron and steal harvested olives; the IDF observes but does not intervene. (OCHA, PCHR 10/15; OCHA Humanitarian Monitor 10/09)
In East Jerusalem, the IDF bulldozes a Palestinian home in Bayt Hanina neighborhood, displacing 5 Palestinians. (OCHA, PCHR 10/15; PCHR 10/22).
A mysterious explosion in Tayr Filsi village in s. Lebanon injures or kills at least 1 person. Israel cites the explosion as proof that Hizballah is stockpiling weapons in violation of UN Res. 1701 that ended the 2006 Lebanon war. (NYT 10/13)
The IDF forces a Palestinian family to demolish their home in Sur Bahir on the outskirts of Jerusalem (displacing 9 persons), threatening them with a heavy fine if the IDF were to implement the demolition order; 4 yrs. ago, the family paid the Jerusalem municipality a $25,000 fine for the unlicensed building. The IDF also fires tear gas, stun grenades at Palestinian, Israeli, and international activists staging a nonviolent protest in Wadi Abu al-Rish against the confiscation of local Palestinian land for the expansion of Bet Ayn settlement; IDF troops violently beat 5 Israeli demonstrators, detain 9 others. (OCHA, PCHR 7/23)
Lebanese villagers in Khirbat Slim, site of a 7/14 explosion of a suspected Hizballah arms cache, stone and beat UNIFIL troops who attempt to investigate the 7/14 incident, lightly injuring 14 soldiers; the patrol fires in the air to disperse the villagers, causing no injuries, but marking the most serious confrontation btwn. UNIFIL and local Shi‘i residents loyal to Hizballah since the 2006 war. (WT 7/19)
The IDF sends troops, bulldozers into n. Gaza to level land along the border nr. Bayt Hanun; troops fire toward nearby residential areas to keep Palestinians indoors, causing no injuries. The UN reports that in the previous wk., 4 Palestinians were injured in tunnel collapses on the Rafah border. The UN Development Program reports that it has begun a $12-m. project to remove the nearly 420,000 tons of rubble created by OCL. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Hebron, Nablus. Palestinians report that in the previous wk., Israeli authorities removed remains fr. 300 graves at a Muslim cemetery nr. the Jaffa Gate in Jerusalem to make way for construction of Israel’s national Tolerance Museum; the remains were reburied in a mass grave elsewhere. Jewish settlers level 18 d. of Palestinian land nr. Yitzhar settlement, in what local residents fear is an attempt to expand the settlement. (OCHA, PCHR 7/16)
A mysterious explosion levels a building in Lebanon’s Khirbat Slim, 12 mi. fr. the Israeli border, causing no casualties; Lebanese and Hizballah authorities secure the site, barring access to UNIFIL soldiers. Israel claims the site housed a Hizballah arms cache, indicating that Hizballah is rearming in violation of UN Res. 1701 that ended the 2006 Lebanon war. Hizballah claims that the explosion was caused by unexploded IDF cluster munitions left over fr. the war. (NYT 7/16)
The IDF conducts major late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus, firing on residential areas and stone-throwing youths who confront them wounding 2, arresting 30; also conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Hebron, Jenin. (PCHR 7/17; OCHA 7/23; PCHR 7/24)
Israel, Hizballah implement a major prisoner exchange that includes Hizballah’s return of the bodies of the 2 IDF soldiers who were captured and killed on 7/06, sparking the 2006 Lebanon war, and Israel release of Samir Quntar (convicted by Israel in a 1979 attack that left 5 Israelis dead) (HA, IFM, MA, NYT, YA 7/16; AHR, IFM, NYT, WP, WT 7/17)
After Islamic Jihad fires several rockets fr. Gaza into Israel (causing no reported injuries), the IDF makes an air strike on a car in Gaza City assassinating Islamic Jihad mbr. Hussam Harb, wounding a 2d Islamic Jihad mbr., 3 bystanders. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches nr. Bethlehem, Hebron, Ramallah; patrols in, fires on residential areas of Nablus for a night, causing no injuries. Inside Israel, Israeli security forces demolish several bedouin homes in Um al-Hiram in the Negev. A Palestinian dies of injuries received in interfactional violence in Gaza City on 6/13. (WP 6/25; OCHA 6/27; PCHR 6/28)
Outside Metula in s. Lebanon, unidentified assailants detonate a car bomb as a UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) convoy passes, killing 6 UNIFIL soldiers (3 Columbians, 3 Spaniards), wounding 2 in the 1st targeted attack on the international mission since the 2006 Lebanon war. Amal, Hizballah denounce the attack, deny involvement. (NYT, WP, WT 6/25; NYT 7/7)
The IDF sends bulldozers, tanks into Gaza nr. Sufa crossing to level land; troops also discover and dismantle 2 roadside bombs. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in Nablus; patrols areas around Hebron, firing on stonethrowing Palestinians who confront the troops, wounding 2 Palestinians. In Tel Aviv, some 100,000 Israeli demonstrators demand Olmert’s resignation for his handling of the 2006 Lebanon war, corruption in his administration, and failure to improve social services and public education. Turnout reportedly is half of what organizers anticipated. (HA, MM 5/3; MM, NYT, WP, WT 5/4; HA 5/5; OCHA 5/9; PCHR 5/10)
The Israeli navy fires on Palestinian fishing boats off the coast of Nussayrat r.c., forcing them to return to shore. In the West Bank, the IDF shoots, wounds a Palestinian farmer working in his field nr. Ibna; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus, nr. Hebron, and in Jenin town and r.c., Qabatya, Qalqilya. Of note: By this date, the IDF has stopped requiring special permits for Palestinians to enter the Jordan Valley, but access is only possible on public transportation through 4 checkpoints. The PA says that it has made the 1st formal contact with the kidnappers holding BBC correspondent Johnston, confirming he is still alive, but that their demands for his release are unacceptable. Protesters in cities across Israel begin to march to Tel Aviv for a major demonstration on 5/3 calling for Olmert’s resignation in the wake of the Winograd Commission report on Israel’s handling of the summer 2006 war on Lebanon. (OCHA, WP, WT 5/2; PCHR 5/3)
Overnight, the IDF makes air strikes destroying the PA FMin. building in Gaza City, wounding 13 bystanders (including 6 children); makes an air strike on Khan Yunis, killing 1 Islamic Jihad mbr., wounding a 2d; sends troops into al-Qarara, firing on residential and agricultural areas. During the day in Gaza, the IDF continues to shell n. Gaza, wounding at least 2 Palestinians; fires on residential areas nr. Sufa crossing, wounding a Palestinian child outside his home. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Salfit; uproots 50 Palestinian trees nr. the separation wall in Bayt Jala for “security reasons.” A Palestinian teenager wounded in a 7/10 IDF air strike on Bayt Hanun dies. (NYT, WP 7/13; PCHR 7/20)
Officially launching Operation Just Reward (ca. 7/18 renamed Operation Change of Direction), the IDF makes predawn air strikes on s. Lebanon that kill at least 44 Lebanese civilians, wound around 100. Hizballah responds by firing some 60 Katyusha rockets on n. Israel, hitting a home in Nahariya (killing 1 Israeli woman, wounding 29), wounding 11 in Safad, and hitting the northern towns of Carmiel, Majdal Qrum, Zarit. During the day, the IDF intensifies its attacks on Lebanon to cut Hizballah supply lines and prevent internal transportation of weapons and fighters, imposing a naval blockade on Lebanese ports north to Beirut and making air strikes on Beirut International Airport, the Lebanese army’s main Rayak air base nr. the Syrian border, a small military airport in Qulayat in n. Lebanon, Hizballah’s al-Manar TV station outside Beirut (wounding 6) and a relay tower in Baalbek (killing 1 Lebanese, wounding 4), a major oil depot in Jiyeh, numerous roads and bridges. AfterIsrael warns Lebanese to evacuate Hizballah-dominated areas of s. Beirut, Hizballah threatens to strike Haifa if Beirut is targeted. When the IDF conducts overflights of Beirut shortly afterward, Hizballah fires 2 Katyushas at Haifa, damaging a hotel but causing no injuries. Israeli-Hizballah exchanges continue late into the evening, with Hizballah firing around 90 rockets and mortars into Israel, hitting some 20 northern towns and killing a 2d Israeli, whileIsrael attacks 100s of targets across Lebanon (mostly in the south, but including hitting Beirut airport a 2d time, with artillery reportedly fired at a rate of 1 shell per minute throughout the day), killing at least another 10 Lebanese. Total casualties for the day are estimated at 54 Lebanese (overwhelmingly civilians) killed and 103 wounded, and 2 Israelis killed and 90 injured (1 seriously, two-thirds being treated for shock). Israel also warns UNIFIL that the IDF will target anyone moving nr. the Blue Line, including UNIFIL observers, prompting UNIFIL to confine its 2,500 troops (who are either unarmed or lightly armed for personal defense only) to barracks. (AP, HA, MSNBC, National Public Radio, REU 7/13; NYT, UNIS, WP, WT 7/14)
Israeli-Palestinian clashes enter their 50th day, with the internal closure on Palestinian towns in the West Bank still in place. Israeli PM Ehud Barak tells Israelis to prepare for a protracted conflict, threatens to escalate actions against Palestinians. To pressure the Palestinian Authority (PA), Barak suspends plans to transfer $64 m. in taxes and customs duties owed the PA to cover salaries and regular expenses. Overnight, the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) shells Fatah offices in Hebron, Jinin. During the day, IDF troops fatally shoot 4 Palestinians, fire on a Palestinian police station. 1 of the 4 Palestinians dies while the IDF blocks an ambulance crew fr. reaching him for 2 hrs. Inside Israel, Israeli Arabs clash with Israeli police officers nr. Sakhnin, leaving 1 demonstrator slightly injured. IDF West Bank cmdr. Brig. Gen. Benjamin Gantz warns that he "could probably wipe out Bayt Jala in a matter of hrs." Jewish settlers uproot a Palestinian olive grove nr. Ramallah, fire on Palestinian cars nr. Zatariyya Junction, injuring 2. (AFP [Internet], MENL, MM 11/16; LAW, NYT, WP 11/17; AIC 11/20; NYT 1/17)
In Gaza, U.S. special envoy Dennis Ross meets with PA head Yasir Arafat to discuss ways of halting the ongoing violence, resuming peace talks. (HA, WP, WT 11/17; MEI 11/24)
Hizballah claims responsibility for setting off a small bomb in the disputed Shaba` Farms area of the Golan Heights, slightly injuring 1 IDF soldier. The UN condemns the attack, expresses concern. (AFP [Internet] 11/16; MM, NYT, YA 11/17; MEI 11/24) (see 11/15)
Remaining lands occupied by Israel are returned to Jordan at mtg. of the joint Jordanian-Israeli comm. on treaty implementation, armies deploy along newly demarcated border. 300 Israeli farmers are given entry permits so they can continue working farms. (JTV, QY, RJ 2/9 in FBIS 2/10; Al-Aswaq 2/11 in FBIS 2/14)
Rabin, Arafat meet at Erez to restart negotiations but talks break down when Rabin refuses to lift closure of o.t. Rabin demands PA crackdown on opposition, impose ban on carrying weapons without a license, create judicial system proposed 2/7 immediately, take legal and punitive steps against terrorism; approves additional 2,000 Palestinian policemen. Arafat says this will put him in conflict with opposition groups outside Hamas, Islamic Jihad. Both agree to meet again in 1 wk. Arafat suggests Israel redeploy fr. one West Bank town as first step in interim settlement. (MM 2/9; IDF Radio, MENA, QY, VOP 2/9, RMC, VOP 2/10 in FBIS 2/10; CSM, MM, NYT, WP, WT 2/10; WT 2/12; MEI 2/17)
Russian envoy Viktor Posuvalyuk meets with Jordan's King Hussein, PM Shakir, FM al-Kabariti in Amman to discuss peace process, bilateral relations. (RJ 2/9 in FBIS 2/10)
Palestinian police raid Gaza headquarters of Islamic Jihad, also arrest 3 Hamas leaders. (WT 2/10)
Arafat meets with delegation fr. EU headed by French FM Juppé in Gaza. Delegation also meets with PA representatives at Orient House, says Israel's temporary closure is justified but peace process must move forward. (MM 2/9; AFP, QY, VOP 2/9 in FBIS 2/10; NYT 2/10; MEI 2/17)
Rep. Gingrich's wife says her job with the Israeli Export Development Co., attracting American companies to high tech business park in Israel, poses no conflict of interest with her husband's job as House speaker. She was offered the job after visiting Israeli on a tour run by AIPAC. (WT 2/10; CSM 2/15)
Fateh and Hamas reportedly reach agreement to end violence after massive efforts by Haydar 'Abd al-Shafi and NRC (see 7/8). Violence and threats on peace delegates continue. (ITV 7/10 in FBIS 7/13; MM 7/10)
Palestinian Israeli delegation including MK 'Abd al-Wahhab Darawsha and Umm al-Fahm Mayor Shaykh Raid Salah arrives in Gaza City to "offer good offices" for mediation of Hamas-Fateh violence in Gaza Strip. (MM 7/10)
PLO sources announce Oman has been asked to help mediate PLO's conflict with GCC countries, which cut off large amounts of aid as a result of Palestinian position in the Gulf war. (AFP 7/10 in FBIS 7/17)
Occupied Palestine/Israel: P.M. Peres tells 21-member Council of Europe, in Strasbourg, that Israel is willing for Gaza Strip residentso be given Jordanian passports, states that the "only framework" that holds promise for peace between Israel and its neighbors and for solving the Palestinian problem is "direct negotiations between a Jordanian-Palestinian delegation and an Israeli delegation" [JP 4/23]. Israeli army sources state there have been 67 incidents of shooting, planting explosive devices, and throwing hand grenades and gasoline bombsince January of this year, compared with 104 during the period between August to December of 1985 [JP 4/23].
Arab World: PLO officials inAmman state Jordan has deported 7 Fateh officers from the Karameh force who sided with Yasir Arafat in conflict with 'Atallah 'Atallah (Abu Za'im) [BG 4/23; JP 4/24]. Reports from Amman indicate that 40 to 100 more Palestinians may be facing deportation as well [FJ 4/25]. Jordan has increased its restrictions on the entry of prominent pro-Fateh Palestinians from the West Bank and is turning them back at the bridges; Jordanian authorities have begun bureaucratic harassment, confiscation of passports at the border, and lengthy questioning of Fateh supporters [JP 4/23].
Other Countries: Seventeen people, including a retired Israeli general, are indicted in New York on federal charges of conspiring to sell Iran more than $2 billion worth of American weapons, in violation of U.S. arms embargo; Israeli embassy denies Israeli govt. involvement in the matter [WP, WSJ 4/23].
Occupied Palestine/Israel: Israeli bus driver Shlomo Hatuka, injured in 4/12 attack on his bus near Ramallah, dies of gunshot wounds suffered in the incident [WP, JP 4/23].
Arab World: Two members of PLO are wounded during shoot-out at PLO office in Amman; reports say 'Atallah 'Atallah (Abu Za'im) tried to shoot his way into his office after finding it locked [WP, MG 4/23].
Occupied Palestine/Israel: Palestinian Heritage Week festival exhibit destroyed in Bir Zeit U. fire; arson suspected. Israeli army denies any involvement in Ain al-Hilweh, S. Lebanon incidents (5/17/84).
Arab World: Muslim leaders march through Sabra refugee camp, protesting murder of Ain al-Hilweh refugees by Israeli-backed militia. Lebanon's PM Karami calls for united Lebanese effort to end Israeli occupation of S. Lebanon. Large rally held in Baalbek for Shi'ite soldiers, incuding Irani Revolutionary Guard. Thousands of Druze in Israeli-occupied Golan mark 40th anniversary of death of Nur al-Din Kanj Abu Salah, waving Syrian flags and shouting slogans of allegiance to Syria.
Other Countries: UN Security Council hears PLO complaint of Israeli attacks on S. Lebanon refugee camps in closed-door session. UNRWA spokesman in Vienna reports 1 killed, 20 injured in Israeli military operations in S. Lebanon refugee camp. Washington Post reports CIA director Casey allowed Israel access to sensitive satellite photographs. Pentagon officials confirm US & Israel working toward defense pact. Yeshiva U. Talmudic law prof. Rabbi Tendler decries arrests of Jewish terrorists and calls US Jews to their defense, claiming "a Jew . . . respects human life as no one else does." Fired from his Toronto congregation for denouncing Israeli invasion of Lebanon, Rabbi Slonim addresses Canadian Arab Federation, praying for better understanding between Arabs and Jews.
Israeli troops seize Beaufort Castle, Nabatiyeh, Hasbaya; fighting continues in Tyre and nearby Palestinian refugee camps; air battle over Beirut suburbs between Israeli and Syrian jets; Israeli troops converge on Sidon from 3 directions after airdropping leaflets to residents asking them to leave their homes within 2 hours; three waves of Israeli planes bomb and strafe southern Beirut; Begin and Ariel Sharon tour Beaufort Castle; Tyre is finally captured, in house-to-house combat, though pockets of resistance remain; UN re-ports 57 Israeli sorties flown over Lebanon; Israeli armored column pushes to within 12 miles of Beirut; assault on Jiye power plant cuts electricity to Beirut.
Two Syrian jets shot down over northern Israel, .2 in northern Lebanon; Israeli jets bomb and strafe Syrian positions at jezzine, east of Sidon (at least 5 Syrian soldiers killed); fierce battles fought with Israeli jets over Beirut; Syrian peacekeeping units in Beirut move equipment and ammunition to positions guarding highways to Bekaa valley.
PLO units resist in heavy fighting in Tyre and Sidon and at Saadiyat, 12 miles south of Beirut; Palestinian News Agency (WAFA) says 45,000 Israeli troops involved apd 400 killed since the invasion began; claim 45 Israeli tanks and 45 armored cars knocked out; personal security headquarters for Arafat reported hit; PLO accuses UNIFIL of "collaboration" with Israel in failing to counter invasion; Lebanese National Move-ment militias take positions near seafront to guard against Israeli invasion of Beirut.
Apartment buildings and structures at Arab University hit, hospitals report at least 60 wounded; refugees stream into Beirut; electricity cut off to Beirut; Israelis estimate Palestinian casualties at 2500; radio reports say hundreds of bodies litter streets of Sidon; fierce firefight on edge of Sidon reported, as fires rage on hillsides. Israel reports 25 killed, 7 missing, 1 captured, 96 wounded; PLO estimates Israeli casualties at 400.
Israel/Occupied Territories: Begin turns over Beaufort Castle to Major Haddad, meets with Habib, rejects US call for restraint; Army Chief of Staff Rafael Eitan says taking of Beaufort Castle pushes guerrillas out of range of all Galilee settlements except near Golan Heights; blackout on news of troop movements maintained; Foreign Minister Shamir says Israeli aims go beyond pushing the PLO away from the border to "the PLO's final destruction as a terrorist and political factor"; Israel reportedly pressuring Haddad and the Phalange to join in attacks on the PLO (Bashir Gemayel resists); Peres and Rabin (Labor Party) meet with Begin over remarks of Sharon, and Peres calls for speedy end to the conflict; Mapam demands a halt to Israeli air attacks and a return to the cease-fire; Knesset meets to consider no-confidence motion introduced by Democratic Front for Peace & Equality; 60 left-wing students demonstrate near prime minister's of-fice; 150 march to Mt. Scopus campus. Israeli military police tighten border patrols to prevent goods looted from Lebanese homes coming into Israel.
Palestinians/Lebanese: PLO accuses UNIFIL of "collaboration" with Israelis; Bashir Gemayel resists Israeli pressure to attack PLO; WAFA reports Israeli troops number 60,000.
Arab Governments: High-level Iranian delegation, including heads of Iranian army and revolutionary guards, visits Syria.
US: Pentagon sends 5 US warships to the eastern Mediterranean in case the 4,000 Americans in Lebanon need to be evacuated.
UN: UN resolution calls for unconditional and immediate Israeli withdrawal and an end to all military activity within Lebanon and across its border with Israel (Israel's Ambas-sador says Israel will not comply); ABC reports UNIFIL officer received orders from UN headquarters not to resist Israeli forces.