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  • January 2, 2024

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers with a military escort prevent Palestinian farmers from cultivating their land in Atuf. Israeli forces shoot and kill 4 Palestinians during a raid in ‘Azzun; 1...

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  • December 26, 2009

    In the West Bank, IDF undercover units raid the Nablus homes of 3 AMB mbrs. (Nadir al-Sarkaji, Ghassan Abu Sharikh, and ‘Anan Sobeh) allegedly behind the fatal shooting of a settler on 12/24,...

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In the West Bank, Israeli settlers with a military escort prevent Palestinian farmers from cultivating their land in Atuf. Israeli forces shoot and kill 4 Palestinians during a raid in ‘Azzun; 1 Israeli soldier is injured. Israel later says it has decided to keep the bodies of the Palestinians. Israeli forces also assault a Palestinian man at a checkpoint in Yanoun, seizing his car. Elsewhere, Israeli forces assault Palestinian farmers in the Masafer Yatta area. Israeli forces also raid Hebron, assaulting a disabled man. Meanwhile, Israeli forces violently disperse a protest in al-Arroub refugee camp, causing tear-gas related injuries. Palestinians protest the killing of Saleh al-Arouri (see below) in Jenin, Hebron, and Ramallah. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces raze land, uprooting olive trees in Beit Safafa. In Gaza, Israeli forces bomb Khan Yunis, Maghazi, Rafah, Dayr al-Balah, Nuseirat refugee camp, al-Bureij refugee camp, and Gaza City, killing at least 207 people, including 5 in the Palestinian Red Crescent Society headquarters at al-Amal Hospital in Khan Yunis where 14,000 people are sheltering. Israeli forces also open fire at civilians at a market in Nuseirat refugee camp, killing a child. 1 Israeli soldier is injured in combat. In Lebanon, Israeli forces assassinate Hamas political bureau deputy leader Saleh al-Arouri in an airstrike on the Hamas offices in the Dahiyeh suburb of Beirut. 6 other members of Hamas are killed, including al-Qassem Brigades commanders Samir Findi and Azzam al-Aqraa and Hamas members Mahmoud Zaki Shahin, Mohammad Bashasha, Mohammad al-Rayes, and Mohammad Hamoud, and 11 are injured in the strike. In Syria, Israeli forces attack several places near Damascus, causing damage. (AJ, AJ, AJ, AP, AP, AX, HA, HA, HA, NYT, NYT, REU, REU, REU, REU, REU, REU, REU, UNOCHA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 1/2; AJ, AJ, AJ, AP, AP, HA, NYT, NYT, UNOCHA 1/3; AJ, AJ, HA, HA 1/4)

More than 22,185 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces in Gaza, including at least 8,800 children and 6,300 women, and around 57,697 have been injured since 10/7. At least 7,000 people are missing in rubble, including 1,700 children. 317 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces and settlers in the West Bank and East Jerusalem since 10/7, including 80 children. More than 3,812 people have been injured. Israel reports that 1,139 Israelis and foreign nationals have been killed and 5,400 have been injured since 10/7, including Israeli soldiers. In addition, 171 Israeli soldiers have been killed and 983 injured in Gaza since the ground invasion began on 10/27. Over 1.93 million Palestinians, nearly 85% of the population of Gaza, have been displaced since 10/7. There has been a complete electricity blackout in Gaza since 10/12 due to the Israeli blockade. As of 12/23, at least 65,000 housing units had been destroyed and 290,000 had been damaged in Israeli airstrikes since 10/7, constituting over 60% of all housing units. 143 trucks carrying aid enter Gaza via the Rafah and Karim Abu Salem (Kerem Shalom) crossings. (AJ, AJ, UNOCHA, UNOCHA 1/2; AP 1/3)

Lebanese caretaker prime minister Najib Mikati says Israel is trying to pull Lebanon into its war on Gaza by assassinating Saleh al-Arouri in Beirut. Hezbollah says in a statement that it will retaliate. Hamas political leader Ismail Haniyeh calls the assassination an act of terrorism. Israeli cabinet secretary Yossi Fuchs instructs Israeli ministers not to comment on the assassination. Fatah announced a general strike in the West Bank in response to the assassination. U.S. officials tell Axios that Israel did not notify the Biden administration of the assassination in advance. (AJ, AX, HA 1/2)

The International Committee of the Red Cross condemns Israel’s continued targeting of Palestinian Red Crescent Society facilities in Gaza. (HA 1/2)

The PA calls on Israel to immediately hand over a Palestinian baby that was kidnapped from Gaza by Israeli forces and brought to Israel. An Israeli soldier, who has since been killed in Gaza, told Israeli army radio that he had taken a baby to Israel. A picture of the soldier with a baby in Gaza circulated online. (AJ, AJ 1/2)

Haaretz reports it has received testimonies from Palestinian prisoners in Gilboa Prison who say they have been assaulted, humiliated, and abused by Israeli guards since 10/7. Among other transgressions, Israeli guards have been beating and threatening prisoners who refuse to kiss the Israeli flag. Others said that guards would put 11 prisoners in a cell made to fit 3, and step on their food before allowing them to eat it. (HA 1/2)

Hamas political leader Ismail Haniyeh says Hamas has delivered its position on negotiations to Egypt and Qatar, which is based on a “complete cessation of the [Israeli] aggression.” (REU 1/2)

The Supreme Authority of Palestinian Tribes in the Gaza Strip denounces and rejects an Israeli proposal that would see Palestinian tribes have more political power in Gaza, saying it would create confusion and strife. (AJ, MEE 1/2)

Turkey says it arrested 34 people suspected of being part of a Mossad plot. 15 are later formally arrested by a Turkish court and 8 others are deported. (AJ, AP, HA, HA, REU 1/2)

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s spokesperson Eylon Levy says Israel will defend itself at the ICJ after South Africa triggered proceedings by invoking the Genocide Convention on 12/29. Levy calls the South African accusations “blood libel,” saying “history will judge you, and it will judge you without mercy.” The hearings are scheduled to begin on 1/11 and 1/12. Netanyahu tells families of Israeli captives held by Hamas that Hamas’ ultimatum in negotiations about a ceasefire had “softened a little.” (AJ, AP, AP, HA, HA, HA, REU 1/2; REU 1/5)

U.S. secretary of state Antony Blinken speaks with UK foreign secretary David Cameron, discussing the situation in Gaza and in the Red Sea. (HA 1/2)

U.S. State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller calls comments by Israeli ministers Bezalel Smotrich and Itamar Ben-Gvir in favor of depopulating Gaza “inflammatory and irresponsible.” Ben-Gvir responds to Miller’s statement saying the U.S. “is our best friend, but first of all we will do what is best for the State of Israel: the migration of hundreds of thousands from Gaza.” French president Emmanuel Macron also tells Israeli war cabinet member Benny Gantz that the comments are unacceptable. EU high commissioner for foreign affairs Josep Borell also condemns Smotrich and Ben-Gvir’s statements. Likud Party MK Moshe Saada tells Channel 14 that those who call for the destruction of all Palestinians in Gaza are right. (AJ, AJ, AX, HA, HA, REU 1/2; AJ, AP, HA, HA, HA, NYT 1/3)

U.S. intelligence agencies release a declassified report saying that they believe the Israeli assessment that Hamas and Islamic Jihad used parts of al-Shifa Hospital to operate against Israel was at least partially correct but that captives were moved before Israel stormed the hospital. The New York Times notes that U.S. officials did not provide any visual evidence to back up the assessment. After raiding the hospital Israel changed its claim from the tunnels underneath being a Hamas command center to the tunnels being used by Hamas. (NYT, REU 1/2; HA 1/3)

U.S. senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT) says, “Congress must reject that funding [referring to providing billions to Israel]. The taxpayers of the United States must no longer be complicit in destroying the lives of innocent men, women, and children in Gaza.” Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) says Israel has created a humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza, saying, “Stop bombing Gaza. Resume the cease-fire. Work toward a permanent peace.” (AJ 1/2)

A poll conducted by the Israel Democracy Institute shows that 75% of Israeli Jewish respondents support continuing the same scale of indiscriminate bombing of Gaza, despite U.S. pressure to tone down the assault. (HA, HA 1/2) 

In the West Bank, IDF undercover units raid the Nablus homes of 3 AMB mbrs. (Nadir al-Sarkaji, Ghassan Abu Sharikh, and ‘Anan Sobeh) allegedly behind the fatal shooting of a settler on 12/24, killing all 3 and wounding 1 bystander. The deaths constitute assassinations, as the men could have been detained: 2 of them are called to surrender and are fatally shot as they leave their homes unarmed; in the 3d case, soldiers enter the home, and when the wanted man refuses to exit a closet and surrender, soldiers rig the closet door with explosives and detonate the charge, killing him. IDF soldiers surrounding the buildings fire tear gas to disperse stone-throwing Palestinian youths who confront them, hitting 2 (ages 12 and 19) with tear gas canisters, injuring them. PA PM Fayyad denounces the IDF’s failure to coordinate the raids with the Dayton-trained PASF units responsible for security in Nablus, which were in the process of conducting a police investigation of the 12/24 killing. IDF troops in the West Bank also conduct late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Hebron, Nablus. (NYT, WP, WT 12/27; JPI 12/28; PCHR 12/30; OCHA 1/6)

Hamas officials in Lebanon confirm that 2 senior Hamas bodyguards and a 3d person (possibly a Hamas mbr.) were killed and 5 people wounded late on 12/26 in a large explosion at a Hamas office in the Dahiya neighborhood of s. Beirut (Hizballah’s stronghold). (HA 12/26; Associated Press, Wall Street Journal, WT, XIN 12/27; AFP, Kuwait News Agency, Middle East News Agency, MNA, YA 12/28; MNA, al-Nahar, al-Sharq al-Awsat 1/6)