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  • May 26, 2022

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers assaulted 3 Palestinians in Burqa and threw stones at vehicles and homes in the town. Israeli forces closed the main road between Nablus and Qalqilya, impeding...

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  • March 27, 2022

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers set up caravans near Qusra. Israeli settlers also threw stones at commercial structures and vehicles in Burqa, causing damage. Israeli forces delivered stop-work...

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  • February 5, 2022

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers uprooted some 25 olive saplings in Burqin. In East Jerusalem, Israeli settlers attempted to set fire to vehicles in Sheikh Jarrah but fled when Palestinians...

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  • February 3, 2022

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers uprooted 60 olive tree saplings in Khallet al-Dabe. Israeli settlers also assaulted 1 Palestinian minor herding sheep near Hebron. Israeli forces razed...

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  • January 26, 2022

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers threw stones at Palestinian vehicles at a checkpoint near Burqa; 1 Israeli settler was arrested by the Israeli forces, but Israeli police released him shortly...

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  • January 9, 2022

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers raided al-Mughayyir, killing 3 sheep and injuring 3 others. Israeli settlers with military escort also raided a tree-planting event in Burqa, leading to clashes...

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  • December 29, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers with military escort raided al-Lubban ash-Sharqiya, leading to clashes between Israeli soldiers and Palestinians; 1 Palestinian was injured by a tear gas...

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  • December 26, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers with military escort blocked a road leading to Sinjil. Israeli forces shot and injured 1 Palestinian with a rubber-coated bullet to his chest during a raid in...

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  • December 16, 2021

    In the West Bank, 1 Israeli settler was shot and killed and 2 others wounded when 10 shots were fired at their car at the Homesh settlement outpost near Nablus. Israel’s public security minister...

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  • October 20, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers stole harvesting equipment in Qaryut and tried to steal olive crops before being chased away by Palestinians. Israeli forces razed 10 dunams of agricultural land...

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In the West Bank, Israeli settlers assaulted 3 Palestinians in Burqa and threw stones at vehicles and homes in the town. Israeli forces closed the main road between Nablus and Qalqilya, impeding Palestinian movement. Israeli forces also leveled 3 dunams (0.75 acres) of land planted with olive trees near Wadi Rahal. 24 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Silwad, Ramallah, Huwwara, Qalqilya, Ya‘bad, Yatta, Sa‘ir, and Bani Na‘im. In East Jerusalem, 5 Palestinians were arrested during raids. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at Palestinians east of Khuza‘a and Maghazi; no injuries were reported. (MEE, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 5/26; UNOCHA 6/4)

The PA announced it had finished its investigation into the killing of Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, concluding that Israel deliberately killed her. The PA findings are aligned with investigations made by AP and CNN, and with eyewitness accounts. Israel called the PA conclusion “a blatant lie.” The investigation found that the bullet that hit Abu Akleh was a 5.56 mm round used by NATO forces and that it was fired from 186 yards. The PA will not hand over the bullet to Israel, as Israel had requested. The PA handed a copy of its investigation to the U.S. (AJ, AP, AX, HA, REU, WAFA, WAFA 5/26)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas appointed PA minister for civil affairs Hussein al-Sheikh the new secretary-general of the PLO Executive Committee. The position of secretary-general had been vacant since Saeb Erakat passed due to complications from the COVID-19 virus on 11/10/2020. (HA, MEE, WAFA 5/26)

Al Jazeera said it was preparing a file to be sent to the ICC pertaining to the Israeli killing of its journalist Abu Akleh and the Israeli bombing their offices in Gaza in May 2021. (AJ, MEE, REU 5/26; AP, HA 5/27)

The Iraqi parliament approved a law criminalizing the normalization of Israel, with 275 out of 329 votes in favor. The law applied to all Iraqi citizens, state and independent institutions, and foreigners working in Iraq. Violations of the law can be punishable by death sentences or life imprisonment. (AJ, HA, WAFA 5/26; NYT 5/27; MEMO 5/30)

83 Democrats in the U.S. house and senate signed a letter to U.S. secretary of state Antony Blinken urging him to intervene against Israeli plans to forcefully displace more than 1,000 Palestinians living in Masafer Yatta, an area Israel has converted into a firing zone. The letter underscored that the Israeli move “could further undermine efforts to reach a two-state solution” and contravenes international law. (ALM, HA 5/26; MDW, MEE, WAFA 5/27; TOI 5/31)

The U.S. company Meta, which operates Facebook, turned down an Israeli request to block a Facebook page Israel claims is “clearly linked to Hamas.” Meta said that the Israeli claim did not hold any merit. (HA 5/26)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers set up caravans near Qusra. Israeli settlers also threw stones at commercial structures and vehicles in Burqa, causing damage. Israeli forces delivered stop-work orders for 1 house and electricity cables in al-Twana. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire on Palestinian fishermen northwest of Rafah; no injuries were reported. In Israel, 2 Palestinian citizens of Israel opened fire on Israelis in Hadera, killing 2 Israeli soldiers and wounding 5 others, including 1 soldier, before being shot and killed by Israeli undercover police. Israel said that the 2 attackers were affiliated of ISIS. 5 Palestinian citizens of Israel were arrested during subsequent raids in Umm al-Fahm under suspicion of having prior knowledge of the attack. (AJ, AP, DW, HA, HILL, MEE, NYT, TOI, WAFA, WAFA 3/27; ABC, AP, AX, CNN, GDN, HA, HA, HA, JP, MEMO, NPR, REU, SKY, TOI, WSJ 3/28; ALM, ALM 3/29; F24, PCHR 3/31; UNOCHA 4/10)

Members of the settler organization Ateret Cohanim entered the 1st floor of the Little Petra Hotel in East Jerusalem with Israeli police escort in an effort to cement the organization’s hold of the building. The ownership of the building is part of an ongoing legal case at the Israeli supreme court between the Greek Orthodox patriarchate in Jerusalem and Ateret Cohanim. The lawyers of the Palestinian family that runs the hotel were attacked with pepper spray by the Israeli settlers when they entered the building and Israeli police detained 1 of the 2 lawyers present at the site. (HA 3/27; MEE, WAFA 3/28; WAFA 3/29; WAFA, WAFA 3/30; PCHR 3/31)

The Israeli Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories announced that Israel will approve up to 20,000 work permits for Palestinians in Gaza for workers in construction and agriculture. The International Committee of the Red Cross in Israel also announced that Israel will allow family visits by Palestinians in Gaza to Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisoners, for the 1st time since March 2020. (ALM 3/31)

U.S. secretary of state Antony Blinken met with PA president Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah. During the meeting, President Abbas called on the U.S. to help curb settler violence and end settlement expansion. Abbas warned Blinken that the PA may rescind its recognition of Israel and end security cooperation if Israeli unilateral actions are not curbed. Abbas also criticized the U.S. and its allies for its double standards in not applying sanctions against Israel for its violations of international law as they have done against Russia. (HA, MEE, WAFA 3/27; JP 3/28; AX 3/30)

The foreign ministers of the U.S., UAE, Morocco, Egypt, Bahrain, and Israel met in Sde Boker for the 1st day of a 2-day summit comprised of countries that have normalized ties with Israel with U.S. support. Among the subjects discussed at the summit were the perceived threat from Iran and the U.S.’s efforts to reenter the Iran Nuclear deal. The 1st day of the summit coincided with the 20th anniversary of the Arab Peace Initiative. Secretary Blinken also met with Israel’s prime minister Naftali Bennett, who shortly after, tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. (AJ, AP, GDN, HA, HA, HA, HA, JP, JP, REU, TOI, WP 3/27; HA, MEMO 3/28; AX, AX 3/30)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers uprooted some 25 olive saplings in Burqin. In East Jerusalem, Israeli settlers attempted to set fire to vehicles in Sheikh Jarrah but fled when Palestinians arrived at the scene. (WAFA, WAFA 2/5; PCHR 2/10; UNOCHA 2/11)

PA health minister Mai al-Kaila announced that the PA was closing schools in the West Bank for 10 days to curb the spread of the Omicron variant of the COVID-19 virus. Health Minister al-Kaila said that the PA is not considering further lockdown measures. (HA 2/5)

PA prime minister Mohammed Shtayyeh addressed the African Union, urging the organization to reverse its decision to include Israel as an observer state. Prime Minister Shtayyeh said, “Your excellencies, I’m sorry to report to you that the situation of the Palestinian people has only grown more precarious. The decision to grant Israel an observer status is a reward that [Israel] does not deserve, and we call for this decision to be withdrawn.” During the summit, Shtayyeh met with the leaders of Nigeria and Algeria and the foreign ministers of Tunisia, Egypt, and Botswana. (AJ, MEMO, WAFA, WAFA 2/5)

The World Bank announced a $3.67 million grant to the PA to help fight the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. (WAFA 2/6; ALM 2/7)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers uprooted 60 olive tree saplings in Khallet al-Dabe. Israeli settlers also assaulted 1 Palestinian minor herding sheep near Hebron. Israeli forces razed residential structures belonging to Bedouins in al-Husa near Deir Nidham. 8 Palestinians were arrested during raids in Silat al-Harithiya, Hableh, Kafr Thulth, Tubas, Deir Istiya, and Dheisheh refugee camp. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 2/3; PCHR 2/10; UNOCHA 2/11)

The PA reported that there were more than 70,000 active cases of Palestinians infected with the Omicron variant of the COVID-19 virus in the West Bank, more than twice the amount from previous COVID-19 surges. While the Omicron variant is less lethal, the high infection rate has put the West Bank hospitals near capacity. According to the Health Ministry, West Bank hospitals were at 85% capacity and more were expected to be admitted to hospitals in the near future. 80 Palestinians were admitted in intensive care and 24 were on ventilators. In Gaza, there were 63 serious cases of COVID-19 infection. At least 4,859 Palestinians have died while infected with the COVID-19 virus since the pandemic hit Palestine in March 2020. About half of Palestinians in the West Bank are vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus. The Omicron variant is able to infect vaccinated people, but symptoms are typically milder for vaccinated people than for those who have not been fully vaccinated. The Palestinian Prisoners’ Society also reported that half of the Palestinian prisoners held at Ofer Prison are infected with COVID-19. (AP, WAFA 2/3)

Addameer, al-Haq, Bisan Center for Research and Development, Defence for Children International – Palestine, and the Union of Palestinian Women’s Committees filed a procedural objection to their designation as unlawful, made by the Israeli military’s central command 2 weeks after Israeli defense minister Benny Gantz designated the organizations as “terrorist organizations” in October 2021. The organizations said that they have not been able to review the claims against them as they are classified and thus are unable to defend themselves against the allegations. The Union of Agricultural Work Committee was filing its objection separately, as it was designated unlawful by the Central Command 1 year before the 5 other organizations. (HA 2/3)

In response to a petition filed by Palestinian landowners in Beita to the Israeli supreme court, the Israeli government said that it will continue to allow Israeli settlers to study at the yeshiva built on the evacuated settlement Homesh, despite a law from 2005 barring Israeli settlers from visiting the site. The government further said that it was up to Defense Minister Gantz to raze the remaining structures at the site. Thousands of Israeli settlers visited the site in January without the Israeli military making an effort to enforce the law against them visiting it. (HA 2/4)

1 Palestinian minor was charged with the murder of 1 Israeli settler at the Homesh settlement outpost on 12/16/2021. (HA 2/4)

Defense minister Gantz signed a memorandum of understanding with the king of Bahrain Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa to formalize the 2 countries’ security ties during a visit to Bahrain. The MoU was part of the 2 countries’ normalization deal from September 2020. (AJ, ALM, AP, HA, MEMO, REU, TOI 2/3)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers threw stones at Palestinian vehicles at a checkpoint near Burqa; 1 Israeli settler was arrested by the Israeli forces, but Israeli police released him shortly after he was handed to them. Israeli settlers also threw stones at 2 Palestinian sisters herding sheep in Kisan. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers raided Sabastia, using pepper spray on Palestinians. Israeli forces demolished parts of 1 Palestinian home and razed 7 dunams (1.7 acres) of land in al-Ramadin. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinians, throwing stones and snowballs at Israeli forces in al-Tur; 22 Palestinians were arrested. Israeli forces also shot 1 Palestinian minor with a rubber-coated bullet and arrested him after he allegedly threw a stone at a police car. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at agricultural lands east of Deir al-Balah; no injuries were reported. (TOI, WAFA, WAFA 1/26; HA, PCHR, TOI 1/27)

1 64-year-old Palestinian prisoner suffering from schizophrenia was found dead in his cell at Nitzan prison. (PCHR 1/27)

1 million doses of Russian-made Sputnik COVID-19 vaccines entered Gaza through the Rafah crossing. The 1 million doses of the Sputnik vaccine were donated by the UAE. The PA health ministry said that about 30% of Gaza’s population is vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus. Almost 2 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been delivered to Gaza since the start of the pandemic in early 2020. (HA 1/27)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas extended the COVID-19-related state of emergency by 30 days. The state of emergency was 1st declared in March 2020. (WAFA 1/26; MEMO 1/27)

The autopsy performed after the death of an 80-year-old Palestinian American man in Jiljilyya on 1/12 found that the man died of a heart attack caused by “external violence.” The man had been detained by Israeli forces who gagged, blindfolded, and cuffed him. The Israeli soldiers uncuffed him before leaving him in a cold room, where he was found dead later in the night. (ALM, MEE, NYT 1/26; AP, HA 1/27)

Director of the Crisis and Conflict division of Human Rights Watch (HRW) Lama Fakih said that Amnesty International’s security lab had verified that her phone was infected with the NSO Group’s Pegasus spyware 5 times between April and August 2021. Director Fakih was 1st alerted to the spyware infection by the company Apple on 23 and 24 November. NSO Group told HRW that it is “not aware of any active customer using [its] technology against Human Rights Watch staff member.” Fakih’s work includes monitoring human rights abuses in Syria, Myanmar, Israel, Palestine, Afghanistan, and the U.S. (AJ, ALM, AP, HA, HRW, MEE, MEMO 1/26; WP 1/27)

Axios reported that a cable sent from the Israeli foreign ministry to Israeli embassies told its employees that it was a top priority to delegitimize the UN human rights council’s inquiry into human rights violations in Israel, the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza, set up after the Israeli attacks on Gaza in May 2021. (AX 1/26; JP, MDW, TOI 1/27; MEMO 1/28; HA 2/2)

Lebanon signed a deal to purchase electricity from Jordan via Syria. The deal is expected to give Lebanon 2 hours of additional electricity a day within 2 months. It is expected that the World Bank will finance the deal. (AP, MEMO, REU 1/26)

UK secretary of education Nadhim Zahawi said that protesters chanting “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free” could face prosecution in the UK, as he views the chant as related to Hamas. Secretary Zahawi’s comment was made during a conference on anti-Semitism hosted by his ministry. (MEE 1/27)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers raided al-Mughayyir, killing 3 sheep and injuring 3 others. Israeli settlers with military escort also raided a tree-planting event in Burqa, leading to clashes between Israeli forces and Palestinians, causing tear-gas related injuries. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers threw stones at Palestinian homes in Hebron. Israeli forces seized 1 excavator in Madama. 2 Palestinians were arrested during a house raid in Beit Fajjar. In East Jerusalem, Israeli settlers raided Isawiya, chanting racist slogans at Palestinians. Israeli settlers toured the Haram al-Sharif compound, entering al-Aqsa Mosque. 1 Palestinian family started demolishing their own home in Sur Baher, displacing 10. In Israel, Israeli forces raided Megiddo prison, damaging Palestinian prisoners’ belongings. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at agricultural lands east of al-Qarara, Maghazi, and Dayr al-Balah; no injuries were reported. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 1/9; MEMO, MEMO, MEMO 1/10; PCHR 1/13)

Hamas’s Interior Ministry said 1 person was arrested for the assassination of Palestinian engineer Fadi Mohammad al-Batsh in Malaysia in 2018. Hamas alleged that the person, who was arrested upon entering Gaza, had confessed to the assassination and that the person was carrying out the assassination in coordination with the Mossad. (HA, MEMO, TOI 1/9; MEMO 1/10)

Hamas’s Health Ministry called on the international community to pressure Israel to allow more oxygen and ventilators to enter Gaza, saying the hospitals in Gaza will not be able to cope with the increase in COVID-19 virus cases because of the spread of the highly infectious Omicron strain. (HA 1/10)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers with military escort raided al-Lubban ash-Sharqiya, leading to clashes between Israeli soldiers and Palestinians; 1 Palestinian was injured by a tear gas canister to his shoulder. Israeli forces raided a secondary school in Tuqu‘, physically assaulting 2 staff members and causing tear-gas related injuries among students and staff. 4 Palestinians were arrested during raids in Kharas, Tubas, Dheisheh refugee camp, and Anabta. In East Jerusalem, Israeli settlers opened fire in Sheikh Jarrah; no injuries were reported. 1 Palestinian minor was arrested in Sheikh Jarrah. Israeli forces demolished 1 Palestinian-owned home in Jabel Mukaber, leading to clashes with Palestinian protesters. Israeli forces also demolished 1 Palestinian-owned home in Silwan. In Gaza, 1 Israeli worker doing maintenance work on the Gaza fence was shot and lightly injured by militants in Gaza. Israeli tanks subsequently fired shells at Gaza, injuring 3 farmers and causing damage. (AJ, AP, HA, JP, MEMO, MEMO, REU, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 12/29; MEMO, MEMO, PCHR 12/30)

An Israeli court denied the Israeli government’s request to demolish 41 Palestinian homes in the Israeli town Qalansawe. The Palestinian Israeli homeowners complained that Israel is using the installation of power lines as an excuse to demolish their homes when they can dig the power lines underground, as is done elsewhere. (MEMO 12/30; HA 1/1)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas extended the Covid-19 related state of emergency by 30 days. The state of emergency has been in effect since March 2020 when the 1st case of the Covid-19 virus was detected in Palestine. (WAFA 12/29)

Finland supported PA payments for medical referrals to East Jerusalem hospitals with $2.25 million. (WAFA 12/29)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers with military escort blocked a road leading to Sinjil. Israeli forces shot and injured 1 Palestinian with a rubber-coated bullet to his chest during a raid in Kafr Qaddum. Israeli forces also violently dispersed Palestinian protesters near al-Mughayyir and Sahal al-Baqai’a, causing tear-gas related injuries. Elsewhere, Israeli forces blocked all traffic in and out of Hizma. 4 Palestinians were arrested during raids in Qalqilya, Aqabah, Tuqu‘, and Dayr Jarir. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces raided PA governor of Jerusalem Adnan Ghaith’s home. Israeli forces also raided the home of deputy director-general of the Islamic Waqf, Sheikh Najeh Bakirat, in Jabel Mukaber, handing him a summon for interrogation. 6 Palestinians were arrested during raids in Silwan and at the Haram al-Sharif compound. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 2 nautical miles west of al-Sudaniyya; no injuries were reported. In Israel, 1 Palestinian woman was killed and 2 others injured in a car bombing in Ramle; Israeli authorities suspected an assassination. The killing marked the 123d Palestinian killed in Israel in 2021. (HA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 12/26; MEMO 12/27; PCHR 12/30)

The 1st case of the highly infectious Omicron variant of the COVID-19 virus was detected in Gaza. The Omicron variant has become dominant in many countries and is capable at infecting vaccinated people, especially those who have not received a booster shot. In Gaza, about 25,000 out of 2 million people have received a booster shot of the COVID-19 vaccine. (HA, MEMO, REU 12/26)

The Palestinian Prisoners’ Society said that Israel is denying 1 Palestinian prisoner access to the cancer treatment he needs. The Palestinian man has been detained since 10/25. (WAFA 12/26)

Qatar’s envoy to Palestine Mohammad al-Emadi said in a statement that Qatar, the PA, and Gaza’s electrical company have agreed to a project that will see Qatar invest $60 million in a gas pipeline from Israel to Gaza. The project will change the fuel input at Gaza’s power plant from diesel fuel to natural gas. (MEMO, TOI 12/27)

PA civil affairs minister Hussein al-Sheikh called on the international community to take action against Israeli settler violence. (WAFA 12/26)

The Israeli government approved a plan to double the settler population in the occupied Golan Heights. The $317-million plan will see Israel construct settler housing units and new infrastructure, including 3,300 new settlement units in Katzrin, 4,065 in Golan Regional Council, and 4,000 in 2 new settlements. Israeli prime minister Naftali Bennett said the government investment in settlements in the Golan Heights was linked to the U.S. Trump administration decision to recognize Israeli sovereignty over the area in 2019 and the current Biden administration’s indication that it will not roll back the decision. (AJ, AP, DW, HA, MEE, REU, TOI 12/26; AJ, ALM, AP, MEMO, REU, TOI 12/27; CNN, MDW, TOI 12/28)

In the West Bank, 1 Israeli settler was shot and killed and 2 others wounded when 10 shots were fired at their car at the Homesh settlement outpost near Nablus. Israel’s public security minister Omer Bar-Lev called it “Palestinian terror,” despite not having identified a perpetrator. Israeli settlers threw stones at Palestinian-owned vehicles traveling near Jenin, causing damage. Israeli settlers also made roadblocks and threw stones at Palestinian vehicles in the Hebron area. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers threw stones at Palestinian vehicles traveling near Huwwara and Nablus. Israeli forces physically assaulted 4 Palestinians, including 1 minor, in Hebron. Israeli forces also demolished 2 houses under construction in Jericho. Elsewhere, Israeli forces confiscated 1 tractor and 1 digger in Masafer Yatta. Israeli forces also violently dispersed Palestinian protesters during a raid in al-Arroub refugee camp, injuring 2 minors with rubber-coated bullets and others with tear gas. 6 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Silat al-Harithiya, Madama, Jericho, Beit Fajjar, and Hebron. (AP, HA, MEE, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 12/16; AJ, HA, REU, REU, WAFA, WAFA 12/17; PCHR 12/23)

The PA health ministry said that it had identified 3 cases of the highly infectious strain of the COVID-19 virus, the Omicron variant. The 3 were said to have returned to the West Bank from abroad before testing positive. 1 of 3 Palestinians in the West Bank are fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus, and less than 140,000 have received a booster shot. (AP, HA, REU, WAFA 12/16)

Israel indicted a Palestinian taxi driver for having driven a Palestinian man from Qalqilya to the Damascus Gate plaza, before the man allegedly stabbed an Israeli and was subsequently executed by Israeli forces. The taxi driver is charged with negligence for not realizing that the man would commit an act of violence. (HA 12/16)

2 Palestinian men—1 a resident of Jaffa and 1 from Gaza—were charged with spying on behalf of Hamas by gathering information about the Iron Dome system and taking photos of Israeli soldiers in Ashkelon. (HA, MEMO 12/16)

In Syria, the Syrian military said Israeli missiles fired from the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights had killed 1 Syrian soldier and caused damage in the south of the country. The Syrian military said its air defense system had intercepted most of the Israeli missiles. (AP 12/15; REU 12/16)

Israel’s environmental protection ministry said it had blocked a plan to allow oil tankers unloading crude oil from the UAE in the port of Eilat, which had been negotiated as part of the 2 countries’ normalization agreement. The plan would have seen the crude oil transferred from Eilat to Europe via the Mediterranean Sea. (REU 12/16)

The Times of Israel reported that the U.S. had shelved its plans to reopen a consulate to Palestinians in Jerusalem. ToI also said the Palestinian affairs unit at the U.S. embassy to Israel had begun reporting directly to the U.S. state department, rather than reporting to the U.S. ambassador to Israel, as had been the case since the Trump administration merged the consulate in Jerusalem with the U.S. embassy as part of its move from Tel Aviv. (TOI 12/15; MEMO 12/16; ALM 12/20)

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee announced it is launching 2 political action committees, which will allow the lobby organization to spend unlimited funds on political campaigns in the U.S. without having to report its spending to the U.S. government. (HA 12/17)

Meta Platforms Inc., the owner of Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram, announced that it had suspended some 1,500 fake accounts used to spy on people. The accounts are linked to 6 companies, including the Israeli companies Black Cube, Cognyte, Cobwebs Technologies, and Bluehawk CI. The 6 companies were said to have been targeting some 50,000 people. (HA 12/16; AJ 12/17; HA 12/21)

AP reported that the state of Oregon was exploring ways to divest $233 million of its employee retirement fund from Novalpina Capital, which owns a majority share in the Israeli spyware company NSO Group. NSO Group was blacklisted by the U.S. government in November for assisting in human rights abuses. The Oregon decision follows criticism from Oregon senator Ron Wyden (D-OR), who has been vocal about U.S. sanctions on NSO Group for abuses related to its Pegasus spyware. (AP 12/15; AP 12/17)

Ukrainian ambassador to Israel Yevgen Korniychuk said that Ukraine recognizes Jerusalem as the capital of Israel during a speech at an event marking 30 years of relations between the 2 countries. Ambassador Korniychuk also said that he is seeking to open a branch of the Ukrainian embassy to Israel in Jerusalem. Israeli media speculated that Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky will open the embassy branch during a scheduled visit to Israel in 2022. (ALM, HA 12/17)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers stole harvesting equipment in Qaryut and tried to steal olive crops before being chased away by Palestinians. Israeli forces razed 10 dunams of agricultural land in Wadi Rahal. 18 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Iskaka, Silwad, Ein Yabrud, Jalbun, Hebron, and Atuf. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 10/20; PCHR 10/21)

Israeli prime minister Naftali Bennett ordered 2 companies of Israeli “Border Police” soldiers to be deployed to fight violence in Palestinian populated areas of Israel. The decision follows debates among Israeli politicians on how to address the many killings in Palestinian-majority towns and villages, which has so far reached 102 in 2021. (HA 10/20)

Israeli authorities said that it had increased the number of work permits for Palestinians in Gaza, from 7,000 to 10,000, starting on 10/21. (ALM, AP, HA 10/20; HA 10/21)

Israel said it will require Palestinians working in Israel and in Israeli settlements to show proof of vaccination against the COVID-19 virus, starting on 11/1. (HA 10/20)

An Israeli military court allowed the publication of a 2016 conviction of an Israeli civil administrations major who was sentenced to 11 years in prison for raping 1 Palestinian woman and for receiving a bribe of a sexual nature. The Israeli soldier was also convicted of sexual harassment. (HA 10/20; MEMO 10/22)

Axios reported that U.S. national security advisor Jake Sullivan discussed the possibility of normalizing relations between Saudi Arabia and Israel during a meeting with Saudi crown prince Muhammad bin Salman in Neom, Saudi Arabia, on 9/27. According to Axios, 3 U.S. and Arab sources said Crown Prince bin Salman did not immediately reject the idea. It was unclear what the U.S. administration is offering Saudi Arabia for a normalization deal with Israel. The U.S., during the Trump administration, made big concessions to the UAE and Morocco in exchange for their normalization with Israel, including sales of advanced weaponry to the UAE and recognition of Moroccan sovereignty over Western Sahara to Morocco. The Saudi-led Arab Peace Initiative from 2002 laid out the parameters under which Saudi Arabia will normalize ties with Israel. (AX, HA 10/20)