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  • February 28, 2024

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers assault 4 Palestinian children in al-Juwaya in the Masafer Yatta area. Israeli settlers also open fire at Palestinians traveling between ‘Asira al-Qibliya and ‘...

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In the West Bank, Israeli settlers assault 4 Palestinian children in al-Juwaya in the Masafer Yatta area. Israeli settlers also open fire at Palestinians traveling between ‘Asira al-Qibliya and ‘Urif; no injuries are reported. Israeli forces injure a man in a drone strike in Jenin before raiding the city and its refugee camps, uprooting streets and causing damage to homes. Israeli forces also shoot and injure a Palestinian man during a raid in Qusra, others suffer tear-gas related injuries. Elsewhere, Israeli forces shoot and injure 2 Palestinians during a raid in Qalqilya. Israeli forces also demolish 3 homes in al-Walaja, displacing 16 people. Meanwhile, Israeli forces demolish 2 structures in Jalbun and declare the village a closed military zone. Israeli forces also arrest 35 Palestinians during raids in and around Yatta, Bethlehem, Jenin, and Ramallah. In Gaza, Israeli forces bomb Nuseirat refugee camp, Dayr al-Balah, Gaza City, Khan Yunis, and Rafah, killing at least 76 people. Israeli forces also fire tank shells at the Nasser Hospital in Khan Yunis, causing damage. 10 children die of hunger at al-Shifa and Kamal Adwan hospitals. Al-Awda Hospital in Jabalia refugee camp, the last functional hospital in northern Gaza, suspends operations due to a lack of fuel and medical supplies. In Lebanon, Israeli forces bomb Kafra, killing 2 civilians. Israeli forces also bomb Siddikine, Majdal Zoun, Khreibeh, Ibl al-Saqi, Bint Jbeil, and Ainata. Hezbollah attacks Birkat Risha, Ramtha, and Samaqa in Shebaa Farms. Hamas forces fire rockets at Israeli military bases in Kiryat Shmona. In Syria, Israeli forces bomb Damascus, causing damage. (AJ, AJ, HA, UNOCHA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 2/28; AJ, UNOCHA 2/29)

More than 29,954 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces in Gaza, including at least 12,000 children and 7,200 women, and around 70,325 have been injured since 10/7/2023. At least 8,000 people are missing in rubble, including 1,700 children. 404 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces and settlers in the West Bank and East Jerusalem since 10/7/2023, including 102 children. More than 4,592 people have been injured. Israel reports that 1,139 Israelis and foreign nationals have been killed and 5,400 have been injured in Israel since 10/7/2023, including Israeli soldiers. In addition, 240 Israeli soldiers have been killed and 1,429 injured in Gaza since the ground invasion began on 10/27/2023. Over 1.93 million Palestinians, nearly 85% of the population of Gaza, have been displaced since 10/7/2023. There has been a complete electricity blackout in Gaza since 10/12/2023 due to the Israeli blockade. At least 70,000 housing units have been destroyed and 290,000 have been damaged in Israeli airstrikes since 10/7/2023, constituting over 60% of all housing units. 112 trucks carrying aid enter Gaza. (UNOCHA 2/28; UNOCHA 2/29)

Hamas official Basem Naim says there is still a wide gap between the Hamas position and the ceasefire proposal it has received, adding that Hamas’s non-negotiable demands are a final lasting ceasefire and not a pause, a total withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza, and the freedom of movement for Palestinians in Gaza. Political leader Ismail Haniyeh calls on Muslims to march to the Haram al-Sharif compound on the first day of Ramadan. (AJ, AJ, HA, NYT, REU 2/28)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas meets with UNRWA commissioner-general Philippe Lazzarini in Ramallah. Abbas also sends letters to various heads of state rejecting Israel’s post-war plans for Gaza and calling for intervention to save Palestinians in Gaza. Foreign Minister Riad al-Maliki says Palestinian factions will discuss the establishment of a new technocratic PA government during a meeting in Moscow on 2/29 and that he thinks Hamas understands that if the party is included in the technocratic government it would be boycotted internationally. Al-Maliki also says that the resignation of the PA government on 2/26 was done to show the PA’s readiness to engage with international partners on the future of the PA. Al-Maliki also meets UN high commissioner for human rights Volker Turk in Geneva, Switzerland. (AJ, REU, WAFA, WAFA 2/28; HA 2/29)

Israel’s Channel 12 reports that the Israeli war cabinet has removed National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir’s power to manage the Haram al-Sharif compound and will not severely restrict Muslim worshippers from praying there during Ramadan. U.S. State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller says that the U.S. encourages Israel to allow Muslim worshippers to enter the Haram al-Sharif compound during Ramadan. Energy Minister Eli Cohen says Israel should not normalize relations with Saudi Arabia if it means the establishment of a Palestinian state. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meets with UN senior coordinator for humanitarian aid and reconstruction in Gaza Sigrid Kaag, discussing aid deliveries to Gaza. Defense Minister Yoav Gallant speaks with U.S. secretary of defense Lloyd Austin, discussing aid to Gaza, Israel, and ceasefire negotiations.  (AJ, HA 2/28; AJ 2/29)

Axios reports that the U.S. is considering airdropping humanitarian aid to Gaza as the Israeli invasion has hindered aid reaching northern Gaza and severely limited the amount that can reach the south. USAID administrator Samantha Power says at the Karem Abu Salem (Kerem Shalom) crossing that the U.S. has urged Israel to open more crossings to facilitate aid deliveries. Canada says it is considering airdropping aid in Gaza. President of Refugees International Jeremy Konydyk says aid delivered by air is negligible and helps Israel’s strategy of blockading Gaza. CNN reports that the Biden administration is concerned that Israel will invade Lebanon by the end of spring or early in the summer. (AJ, AX 2/28; AJ, AP, HA, HA, REU 2/29)

Qatar and France issue a joint statement calling on Israel to open all crossings to Gaza to allow aid to enter, saying the 2 countries reject the “killing and starvation suffered by the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip.” (AJ 2/28)

More than 50 international journalists sign an open letter calling on Egypt and Israel to allow journalists “free and unfettered access to Gaza.” (AJ, HA 2/28; HA 2/29)