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  • December 6, 2023

    In the West Bank, a Palestinian man succumbed to injuries sustained from Israeli forces during a raid in Tulkarm on 11/7. Israeli settlers opened fire at Palestinian vehicles near Bethlehem; no...

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In the West Bank, a Palestinian man succumbed to injuries sustained from Israeli forces during a raid in Tulkarm on 11/7. Israeli settlers opened fire at Palestinian vehicles near Bethlehem; no injuries were reported. Israeli settlers also began constructing a settlement road on Palestinian-owned land in Birin. Israeli forces shot and killed 4 Palestinians, including 2 children, and injured 17 others during raids in al-Fara’a refugee camp, Ya’bad, and Balata refugee camp. Israeli forces also opened fire at a Palestinian vehicle and detained the driver in Husan. Elsewhere, Israeli forces also demolished a home in Umm Rukba near al-Khader and 2 homes and 2 agricultural structures in Umm Qissa in the Masafer Yatta area. 42 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in and around Hebron, Jenin, Ramallah, Nablus, Bethlehem, Qalqilya, and Tubas. In East Jerusalem, Israeli settlers toured the Haram al-Sharif compound. Israeli forces demolished parts of a home in Silwan. In Gaza, Israeli forces bombed Maghazi, Khan Yunis, Jabalia refugee camp, Rafah, Nuseirat refugee camp, and Gaza City, killing hundreds of people, including more than 100 in Jabalia. Prominent Palestinian poet and academic Refaat Alareer was also killed along with several family members in Gaza City. 3 Israeli soldiers were killed in combat. Rockets were fired at Israel, injuring 1 in Nir Yitzhak. In Lebanon, rockets were fired at Israeli military sites and soldiers in Tal Shaar and Karm al-Tuffah and Israel attacked several places. In Yemen, the Houthi-led government said it had fired ballistic missiles at Israeli military posts near Eilat which were shot down by Israel’s Arrow missile defense system. The U.S. said it had shot down a drone launched by Yemen. (AJ, AJ, AP, HA, HA, HA, HA, NYT, NYT, REU, REU, REU, REU, UNOCHA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 12/6; AJ, AJ 12/7; AJ 12/8)

The casualty numbers for Gaza were not updated, leaving the number at more than 16,248 Palestinians killed by Israeli forces in Gaza, including at least 6,387 children and 4,257 women, and around 43,616 injured since 10/7. At least 7,000 people were missing in rubble, including 1,700 children. 257 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces and settlers in the West Bank and East Jerusalem since 10/7, including 67 children. More than 3,325 people have been injured. Israel reported that 1,200 Israelis and foreign nationals have been killed and 5,431 have been injured since 10/7. 90 Israeli soldiers have been killed in Gaza since the ground invasion began on 10/27. Over 1.9 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 11/18, at least 45,000 housing units had been destroyed and 233,000 had been damaged in Israeli airstrikes since 10/7, constituting 60% of all housing units. The Red Crescent said its ambulance center in the northern province of Gaza has stopped working due to a lack of fuel. Patients and staff were evacuated from the Kamal Adwan Hospital in Jabalia as the hospital had stopped working. 20 patients that could not be evacuated stayed at the hospital. 80 trucks carrying aid, including 15 gallons of fuel, entered Gaza. Only Rafah received aid for the fourth day in a row. 23 wounded Palestinians and 680 foreign nationals were evacuated to Egypt. (AJ, HA, NYT, UNOCHA, WAFA 12/6)

UN secretary-general Antonio Guterres invoked Article 99 of the UN Charter, forcing the UN Security Council to convene on 12/8 on the basis of threats to “international peace and security,” saying a ceasefire is needed in Gaza to avoid “irreversible implications for Palestinians as a whole and for peace and security in the region.” Israeli ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan said Guterres had reached “a new moral low.” Israeli foreign minister Eli Cohen called Guterres a “danger to world peace.” After the invocation of Article 99, the UAE circulated a draft resolution calling for “an immediate humanitarian ceasefire,” and for all parties to comply with international law. (AJ, AP, AX, HA, NYT, REU, UNOCHA, WAFA 12/6; AJ, AJ, AJ, HA, REU, WAFA 12/7; AP, WAFA 12/8)

The Israeli security cabinet approved an increase in the amount of fuel entering Gaza from around 13,000 gallons to 26,000 gallons a day. Axios reported that the decision was made after pressure from the Biden administration, which had called on Israel to allow 39,000 gallons to enter Gaza daily. The decision was opposed by National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir and Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich. (AJ 12/6; AX 12/7)

Birzeit University published pictures of the central archive of the Gaza municipality, saying Israel had deliberately destroyed thousands of valuable documents to erase the history of Gaza. (AJ 12/6)

The PA Wall and Settlements Commission said it had recorded 610 Israeli settler attacks, which killed 10 Palestinians, since 10/7. (AJ 12/6)

Israeli defense minister Yoav Gallant signed an administration detention order for an Israeli settler who was arrested on 10/3 for attacking Palestinians. (HA 12/7)

PA UN envoy Riyad Mansour addressed the assembly of parties to the Rome Statute, saying “Israel has effectively destroyed every single requirement for live in the Gaza Strip” and complaining that the ICC has not delivered justice for Palestine. (AJ, WAFA, WAFA 12/6)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas met with U.S. vice president Kamala Harris’ National Security Advisor Phil Gordon in Ramallah, discussing the future of the political situation in Gaza after Israel’s war. (HA, WAFA 12/6; HA 12/7)

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the PA will not govern Gaza as long as he is prime minister. (AJ 12/6)

Israel revoked the residency visa for UN special coordinator for the Middle East peace process Lynn Hastings, saying she did not condemn Hamas’ Operation Al-Aqsa Flood. The UN said on 12/1 that Hastings would be replaced in anticipation of the visa revocation. The PA condemned the revocation of Hastings’ visa. (AJ, WAFA, WAFA 12/6)

Israel’s military discussed closing the “Desert Frontier” unit made up of Israeli settlers in the West Bank after a series of incidents where soldiers from the unit attacked and abused Palestinians and Israeli activists. (HA 12/6)

The Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI) said Israel has established 100 “Community Security Squads” equipped with M16 rifles, adding the members of the militias have only received 7 hours of training and lacked proper oversight. ACRI also said there have been reports of Palestinian citizens of Israel being rounded up by the militias to show their identity cards. (AJ, HA 12/6; HA 12/7)

UN high commissioner for human rights Volker Turk said he had asked Israel for weeks to have his team investigate Israeli allegations of sexual violence committed by Hamas militants in Israel on 10/7 but said Israel had not responded. (AJ, WAFA 12/6)

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said “I consider even the debating of this plan as disrespectful to my Palestinian siblings. For us, this is not a plan that can be debated, considered, or discussed,” referring to Israeli suggestions that a buffer zone should be made within Gaza. U.S. State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller also said the Israeli plan was in violation of U.S. policy, suggesting Israel could make a buffer zone in its own territory. (AJ, HA, REU, REU 12/6)

Russian president Vladimir Putin met with UAE president Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan in Abu Dhabi and Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman in Riyadh, discussing energy cooperation, the situation in Gaza, and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Saudi state media reported that Putin and bin Salman shared “deep concern” for the situation in Gaza. (AJ, AJ, AP, HA 12/6; AJ, REU 12/7)

The U.S. Senate failed to pass a $111 billion bill to provide $50 billion to Ukraine and $14 billion to Israel in a 49-51 vote. All Republicans and Democratic senators Bernie Sanders (D-VT) and Chuck Schumer (D-NY) voted against the bill. Republicans sought to separate the aid for Israel from the aid for Ukraine as many Republican senators are opposed to significant spending on Ukraine, while Sanders opposed spending on Israel given the Palestinian death toll in Gaza. Schumer changed his vote from in favor to against to allow him to bring the bill up again at a later date. (HA, NYT 12/6; AJ, HA 12/7)

Belgian prime minister Alexander De Croo said his government will work with the U.S. to sanction “individuals involved in actions that undermine peace, security, and stability” in the West Bank. (AJ 12/6; HA, HA, REU, WAFA 12/7)

Reuters reported that an “orientation note” circulated among EU foreign ministers ahead of a meeting showed the EU was considering tougher sanctions on Hamas and imposing sanctions against violent Israeli settlers. EU commissioner for crisis management Janez Lenarcic condemned an Israeli settler attack in Khirbet Zanuta which destroyed an EU-funded school. Nils Schmid, foreign policy spokesperson of Germany’s ruling Social Democratic Party, said imposing sanctions on settlers was a good idea. (HA, REU, REU, REU 12/6)

Haaretz reported that Foreign Minister Cohen had bypassed objections from foreign ministry staff to issue diplomatic passports for Prime Minister Netanyahu’s son Yair, Likud politician and settlement leader Israel Gantz, and senior Likud member Benny Biton. (HA 12/7)