14308 / 14308 Results
  • March 30, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces violently dispersed a Land Day rally in Sabastiyya, leading to tear-gas related injuries. 10 Palestinians were arrested, including 8 during raids in and around...

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  • March 29, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers cut 15 olive trees west of Salfit. Israeli forces ordered a Palestinian to stop working his land in al-Twana and handed a stop-work order for a retaining wall in...

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  • March 28, 2021

    In the West Bank, some 30 Israeli settlers with military escort threw stones at Palestinians and buildings in Kafr al-Dik, injuring 1 Palestinian and damaging 1 agricultural structure and 1...

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  • March 27, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers attacked 2 Palestinian famers and vandalized their property in Kafr al-Dik. Israeli settlers with military escort also forced Palestinians to leave private land...

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  • March 26, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinian protesters in Kafr Qaddum, injuring 1 minor who was hit by a stun grenade; others suffered tear-gas related injuries. Israeli...

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  • March 25, 2021

    In the West Bank, 4 Israeli settlers attacked 1 Palestinian farmer working his land in al-Khadir; the man was later taken to a hospital for treatment of his injuries. Israeli forces raided Salfit...

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  • March 24, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces shot and injured 2 Palestinians in Bir Nabala after clashes broke out during a raid; Israeli forces also seized 2 cars. Israeli forces also delivered stop-work...

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  • March 23, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers uprooted 25 olive seedlings, stealing 22 of them in Tell. Israeli forces sealed off 8 villages near Ramallah, leading to clashes with Palestinians in 1 of the...

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  • March 22, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces delivered a demolition notice for a car repair shop near Jenin. Israeli forces also sealed off a road from Bayt Iksa towards East Jerusalem. Elsewhere, Israeli...

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  • March 21, 2021

    In the West Bank, 7 Palestinians were arrested, including 5 during late-night raids in and around Dhariyya and Bayt Fajjar, and 2 at a checkpoint near Ya‘bad. In East Jerusalem, 3 Palestinian...

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  • March 20, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers stole and vandalized some 2,400 almond seedlings in Dayr Nidham. Israeli forces seized 1 tractor in Kafr al-Dik. 9 Palestinians were arrested, including 8 during...

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  • March 19, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers set fire to 2 vehicles and sprayed racist graffiti in Bayt Iksa. Israeli settlers also attacked 1 Palestinian man in Susiya, causing moderate injuries. Elsewhere...

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  • March 18, 2021

    In the West Bank, 9 Palestinians were arrested during raids in Bayt Umar, Ya‘bad, Hebron, Jalazun, Qalandia, Salfit, Abu Dis, and Hizma; during a raid in Bayt Umar, Israeli forces assaulted 4...

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  • March 17, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers demolished part of a Palestinian-owned house in Hebron. Israeli settlers also stole 40 olive saplings in Jalud. Israeli forces razed 5 dunams (1.2 acres) of land...

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  • March 16, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers raided Awarta; no injuries were reported. Israeli forces razed 4 dunums (1 acre) of farmland in Bayt Jala. 7 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and...

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  • March 15, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers destroyed a Palestinian-owned fence in Qaryut. Israeli forces shot and injured 2 Palestinians and arrested 1 other in Jalazun refugee camp near the Beit El...

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  • March 14, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, accompanied by Israeli settlers, toured Susiya, closing off the town and surrounding area to Palestinians. Israeli authorities approved...

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  • March 13, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers masked and armed with clubs attacked a Palestinian family of 10, including 8 children, as they were working their land south of Hebron; the 2 parents were...

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  • March 12, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinians protesting settlement expansion in ‘Ayn al-Bayda. Israeli forces also violently dispersed a Palestinian protest in Bayt Dajan,...

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  • March 11, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers opened fire at 2 Palestinian children near Yatta; no injuries were reported. 5 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in and around Dura, Bayt Ula,...

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  • March 10, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers with military escort toured shines in Kafr Haris and Sabastiyya, closing the areas to Palestinians. Israeli forces arrested 5 Palestinian children aged 8-12 in...

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  • March 9, 2021

    In the West Bank, a large group of Israeli settlers threw stones at 2 Palestinian farmers near Dayr Istya. Israeli forces raided Burin, leading to clashes with Palestinians; tear-gas related...

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  • March 8, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces claimed that it had stopped 2 stabbing attempts, including 1 in Tubas where 1 Palestinian man was shot after allegedly trying to stab a soldier. WAFA reported that...

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  • March 7, 2021

    In the West Bank, 5 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and around Qalandia refugee camp, Hizma, Dahariyya, and Jenin. Off the coast of Gaza, 3 Palestinian fishermen were killed in an...

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  • March 6, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers vandalized 15 olive trees in Artas. Israeli settlers with military escort also forced Palestinian farmers to leave their land in Kisan. Elsewhere, Israeli...

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  • March 5, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israel settlers with military escort raided Madama, leading to confrontations with Palestinians; no injuries were reported. Israeli forces violently dispersed anti-settlement...

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  • March 4, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers vandalized 1 Palestinian-owned agricultural structure in Kafr al-Dik. Israeli forces delivered demolition orders for 7 Palestinian-owned homes in Ma‘in. 17...

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  • March 3, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers smashed the windows of 3 Palestinian houses and 2 vehicles in Huwwara. Israeli forces distributed notices to Palestinians in Yatta, declaring a large area east...

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  • March 2, 2021

    In the West Bank, 1 Israeli settler rammed his car into 1 Palestinian east of Qalandia, causing injuries. Israeli settlers also threw stones at Palestinian houses and vehicles in Jalud, causing...

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  • March 1, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers vandalized 1 electrical panel in Asira. 1 Israeli settler rammed his car into a Palestinian-owned flock of sheep in the northern Jordan Valley, killing 4 of the...

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  • February 28, 2021

    In the West Bank, large groups of Israeli settlers chanted racist slogans at Palestinians in Hebron and Israeli forces closed off large portions of the city for its Palestinian residents. Israeli...

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  • February 27, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli forces seized 2 Palestinian-owned tractors in Bidya. 2 Palestinians were arrested at the Qalandia and Huwwara checkpoints In Gaza, 2 Palestinian minors were hospitalized...

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  • February 26, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli settlers stormed Kafr Haris, closing the area to Palestinians. Israeli settlers also uprooted 20 olive saplings in Kisan. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers and Israeli forces...

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  • February 25, 2021

    In the West Bank, Israeli authorities announced that it would seize 193 dunams (47.7 acres) of Palestinian-owned land near Dayr Dibwan for settlement expansion. 17 Palestinians were arrested...

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  • February 24, 2021

    In the West Bank, 1 Israeli settler claimed that a Palestinian tried to stab him near the Yitzhar settlement; no injuries or arrests were reported. Israeli settlers also threw stones at...

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In the West Bank, Israeli forces violently dispersed a Land Day rally in Sabastiyya, leading to tear-gas related injuries. 10 Palestinians were arrested, including 8 during raids in and around Yasuf, Qarawat Bani Hasan, Jenin, Ramallah, and Hebron, and 2 were arrested at a checkpoint near Jenin refugee camp. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces raided the home of a former Palestinian prisoner released on 3/29, after 20 years in prison, and assaulted his relatives who were preparing for a reception in celebration of his release; the Israeli forces arrested the former detainee again, and he was rereleased on 3/31 and warned not to hold a reception. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire and sprayed water at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya, causing damage to 1 boat; no injuries were reported. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/30; PCHR 4/1)

Azzam al-Ahmad and Ahmad Majdalani of the PLO executive committee said that the upcoming Palestinian legislative elections could not be held without participation of Palestinians in East Jerusalem. (WAFA 3/30)

The U.S. state department released its annual report on human rights abuses and continued the Trump administration’s practice of not referring to the Palestinian territories as occupied in the section on Israel. Instead, the section was called “Israel, West Bank and Gaza.” A state department official said the language reflected the department’s “practices generally. We also believe it is clearer and more useful for readers seeking information on human rights in those specific areas.” (ALM 3/31)

EU representation in Jerusalem said that Israel is delaying granting visas to EU election observers for the Palestinian legislative council elections. It said that it had sent the request to the Israeli foreign ministry on 2/8. (WAFA 3/30; JP 3/31)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers cut 15 olive trees west of Salfit. Israeli forces ordered a Palestinian to stop working his land in al-Twana and handed a stop-work order for a retaining wall in Teqqua. 2 Palestinians were arrested near Jenin and Bethlehem. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces notified PA governor of Jerusalem Adnan Gheith that he was banned from entering the West Bank for another 6 months. 4 Palestinians were arrested, including a journalist and her interviewee, in the Old City and al-Tur. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya; no injuries were reported. In Gaza, Israeli forces made incursions and leveled land east of Dayr al-Balah. In Israel, Israeli police shot and killed 1 Palestinian-Israeli man suffering from a mental disability after being called by his mother to his family home in Haifa; the family criticized the Israeli police’s handling of the situation, saying that despite the man brandishing a knife, they could have subdued him with non-lethal means. (AP, HA, WAFA, WAFA 3/29; HA 3/30; PCHR 4/1)

The PA received 100,000 doses of the Chinese-made Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine, donated by China. (HA, WAFA 3/29; ALM 3/31)

The PA foreign ministry summoned the representatives from Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, and the UK because of the countries’ change of vote on Palestinian issues at the UN Human Rights Council. Bulgaria voted against Palestine and the UK and Czech Republic abstained. (WAFA 3/29)

The PA also approved its budget for 2021, stating that it expects a deficit of $1 billion. (WAFA 3/29)

In the West Bank, some 30 Israeli settlers with military escort threw stones at Palestinians and buildings in Kafr al-Dik, injuring 1 Palestinian and damaging 1 agricultural structure and 1 vehicle. Israeli settlers also set up tents on Palestinian-owned land near Taqqua. Israeli forces arrested 1 Palestinian who allegedly tried to ram Israeli settlers with a car at a spring near the Allon settlement; no injuries were reported. Israeli forces also seized 1 tractor near Bidya. Elsewhere, 1 Palestinian was injured during a fall after being chased by Israeli forces at the separation barrier west of Jenin. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces violently disbanded Palestinians preparing for a Mother’s Day event at a stadium in al-Tur, saying it was funded by the PA; 1 Palestinian was physically assaulted by the forces. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya; no injuries were reported. (HA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/28; WAFA 3/29; PCHR 4/1)

Leader of Ra’am (United Arab List) Mansour Abbas met with Yesh Atid (There Is a Future) chairman Yair Lapid to discuss the possibility of forming a government. There are currently 2 blocs, pro-Netanyahu and anti-Netanyahu, with neither having enough mandates to form a government. 2 parties, Yamina (Rightwards) and Ra’am, have not pledged their support to either bloc. According to a source, Abbas and Lapid discussed recognizing unauthorized bedouin villages in the Negev, revoking racist sanctions on illegal construction in Palestinian towns in Israel, freezing the Nation-State Law and combatting violence in Palestinian-Israeli areas of Israel. Yisrael Beiteinu (Israel Our Home) chairman Avigdor Lieberman said that his party would recommend to president Reuven Rivlin that Lapid should be tasked with forming a government. (HA, HA, JP 3/28)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers attacked 2 Palestinian famers and vandalized their property in Kafr al-Dik. Israeli settlers with military escort also forced Palestinians to leave private land that they were cultivating in Kafr Haris. 2 Palestinians were arrested, including 1 during a late-night raid near Tulkarm and 1 south of Bethlehem. In East Jerusalem, 1 Palestinian was assaulted and arrested near the Haram al-Sharif compound. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya; no injuries were reported. (WAFA, WAFA 3/27; PCHR 4/1)

Iran and China signed an agreement on military and economic cooperation estimated to be worth billions of dollars. Reports of the agreement stated that Iran will supply China with cheap oil for 25 years and China will make extensive infrastructure updates in Iran, and that the 2 countries will cooperate on the development of weapons. (AJ, HA, REU 3/27; HA 3/29)

In the West Bank, Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinian protesters in Kafr Qaddum, injuring 1 minor who was hit by a stun grenade; others suffered tear-gas related injuries. Israeli forces also violently dispersed Palestinian protesters in Bayt Dajan, injuring 3 with rubber-coated bullets and others suffered tear-gas related injuries. 4 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in and around Hebron and Tulkarm. In East Jerusalem, 2 Palestinians were arrested during a late-night raid in Wadi al-Juz. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at agricultural lands east of al-Fukhari; no injuries were reported. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/26; PCHR 4/1)

Israel handed over the body of 1 Palestinian man who was shot and killed by Israeli settlers on 2/5 to his family. (WAFA 3/26)

Haaretz reported that Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu is ignoring a request made by Jordan to have Israel supply water, as Jordan is experiencing a water shortage. Israel provides Jordan with water as agreed in the 2 countries’ peace agreement and Israel sometimes provides Jordan with extra water when Jordan is experiencing droughts. Prime Minister Netanyahu’s decision to ignore Jordan’s request is reportedly in retaliation for Jordan’s decision to close its airspace to him for a planned trip to the UAE after Israel complicated a planned visit by Jordan’s crown prince to the Haram al-Sharif compound on 3/10, which the crown prince ultimately canceled. (HA 3/26; HA, HA 3/29)

In the West Bank, 4 Israeli settlers attacked 1 Palestinian farmer working his land in al-Khadir; the man was later taken to a hospital for treatment of his injuries. Israeli forces raided Salfit, leading to tear-gas related injuries. 26 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in and around Bayt Kahal, Hebron, Dheisheh refugee camp, al-Mughayyir, Tell, and Nablus. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces handed the former Grand Mufti of Jerusalem Shaykh Ekrima Sabri a notice banning him from traveling for 2 months. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire and sprayed water on Palestinian fishermen within 6 nautical miles west of Dayr al-Balah, causing damage to 1 boat, which sank; no injuries were reported. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at agricultural lands east of Dayr al-Balah; no injuries were reported. In Israel, anti-Palestinian Israelis vandalized more than 30 cars by slashing tires and writing in Hebrew “expel or kill” on them with graffiti in Kafr Kassim; The mayor of Kafr Kassim called it “an act of terrorism.” Israeli forces demolished the bedouin village al-‘Araqib for the 185th time since 2000. (HA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/25; PCHR 4/1)

Israel’s Channel 12 News reported that 1 Israeli-owned cargo ship was hit by an Iranian missile in the Arabian Sea. (REU 3/25; ALM, HA 3/26)

The U.S. state department announced that it would send $15 million in COVID-19 aid to the occupied Palestinian territories through Catholic Relief Services and U.S. AID emergency food assistance programs. (ALM, AP, HA, WAFA 3/25; AJ, WAFA 3/26)

Norway donated $900,000 to the Palestinian Central Election Commission to support the 2021 Palestinian elections. (WAFA 3/25)

In the West Bank, Israeli forces shot and injured 2 Palestinians in Bir Nabala after clashes broke out during a raid; Israeli forces also seized 2 cars. Israeli forces also delivered stop-work orders to Palestinians rehabilitating land in Dayr Nidham. Elsewhere, Israeli forces razed some 3 dunams (0.75 acres) of land in Kisan. 23 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in and around Jenin, Qabatiya, Jalazun, al-Bireh, Bethlehem, Hebron, and Tammun. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces demolished 2 Palestinian-owned homes in Jabal Mukabir. 1 Palestinian was arrested during a late-night raid in Issawiyya. In Israel, 1 Palestinian man from Ramallah, who was working without an Israeli permit in Tel Aviv, died after falling to his death while being chased by Israeli police because of his lack of permit. (HA, TOI, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/24; HA, PCHR 3/25; HA 4/1)

During a tour of the Middle East, Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi told Al Arabiya TV that China will invite Palestinian and Israeli public figures to China for peace talks. (HA, JP, TOI 3/24; WAFA, WAFA 3/25; WAFA 3/28)

The UK contributed $17.3 million to UNRWA. (WAFA 3/24)

Japan, through the UN, gave $900,000 worth of medical equipment to the Makassed hospital in East Jerusalem. (WAFA 3/24)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers uprooted 25 olive seedlings, stealing 22 of them in Tell. Israeli forces sealed off 8 villages near Ramallah, leading to clashes with Palestinians in 1 of the villages, Dayr Abu Mash‘al, causing tear-gas related injuries. Israeli forces also violently dispersed an anti-settlement protest in Beita, injuring 1 Palestinian with a rubber-coated bullet to his head, and others suffered tear-gas related injuries. 2 Palestinians were arrested, including 1 during a late-night raid in Anata, and 1 at a checkpoint in Halhul. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces demolished 1 house in Shu‘fat refugee camp. Israeli police physically assaulted and arrested 3 Palestinians in Silwan after stopping their car. 2 others were arrested during late-night raids in Issawiyya and al-Tur. In Gaza, rockets launched from Gaza landed in an open area near Beersheba, where Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu was visiting during his election day campaign; no injuries or damage were reported. Israel subsequently attacked Gaza with fighter jets and helicopters, firing 5 missiles at sites near Gaza City and at 1 site in Dayr al-Balah, causing severe damage. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Gaza; no injuries were reported. (HA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/23; AJ, WAFA, WAFA 3/24; PCHR 3/25)

Israel closed all crossings for the Israeli elections. (WAFA 3/21)

A poll conducted by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research found that a single Fatah list would get 43% of the votes for the parliamentary elections while Hamas would win 30%; 18% were undecided. However, within the population of Fatah supports, some 10% would vote for a party headed by Mohammad Dahlan and 7% for a party head by Nasser al-Kidwa. (AP, HA, PCPSR 3/23)

Israelis voted in the general elections for the 4th time in 2 years. This time, there was not an obvious coalition to formed either, as many right-wing parties had promised not to support a government with Benjamin Netanyahu as its prime minister. Netanyahu, who had convinced the Palestinian-Israeli party Ra’am (United Arab List) to break with the Joint Arab List, also relied on religious Zionist parties, to the right of his Likud party, to be able to form a government. Those parties, including a significant majority of Likud, were vocally opposed to being in a governing coalition with Palestinian-Israelis. Ra’am leader Mansour Abbas said after the election that he was not wedded to either the right wing or left wing at that point. Meretz (Vigor) and Labor both had a better election than anticipated and went over the electoral threshold. So did the terrorist-supporting Otzma Yehudit (Jewish Power), made up by followers of Meir Kahane. The Joint Arab List ended up with 6 mandates, down from 15, partially a result of lower Palestinian-Israeli voter turnout and because Ra’am received 4 mandates that previously would have gone to the Joint Arab List. (REU 3/22; AJ, AP, AP, GDN, HA, HA, HA 3/24; ALM, HA, HA, REU 3/25; AJ 3/26)

The Middle East Quartet members met for the 1st time since 2018 to discuss “meaningful negotiations” between Israelis and Palestinians. PA president Mahmoud Abbas welcomed the statement made by the Quartet. (AP, REU 3/23; HA, WAFA 3/24; WAFA 3/26)

The Dutch foreign ministry summoned the Israeli ambassador to the country for clarification as to why PA foreign minister Riyad al-Maliki had his VIP travel card confiscated after meeting with ICC personnel in the Hague. The Dutch foreign ministry said that “the ICC must be able to carry out its work without interference.” (HA, MEMO, REU, WAFA 3/23)

In the West Bank, Israeli forces delivered a demolition notice for a car repair shop near Jenin. Israeli forces also sealed off a road from Bayt Iksa towards East Jerusalem. Elsewhere, Israeli forces prevented a Palestinian news crew from covering an event in ‘Ayn al-Bayda. 9 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and around Aida refugee camp, al-Khadir, Bayt Jala, Dhariyya, Bayt Umar, and al-‘Amari refugee camp. In East Jerusalem, 11 Palestinians were arrested during raids in the Old City. Off the coast of Gaza, Israel naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya; no injuries were reported. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at agricultural lands east of al-Fukhari; no injuries were reported. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/22; PCHR 3/25)

The Palestinian activist Issa Amro was sentenced to 2 years of probation and a fine of $1,060 by an Israeli military court for protesting the Israeli occupation. The EU representative to Palestine regretted the decision. (Twitter 3/22)

In the West Bank, 7 Palestinians were arrested, including 5 during late-night raids in and around Dhariyya and Bayt Fajjar, and 2 at a checkpoint near Ya‘bad. In East Jerusalem, 3 Palestinian families started demolishing their own homes in Issawiyya and Ras Khamis. 2 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in al-Tur. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Dayr al-Balah; no injuries were reported. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at Palestinian famers east of Rafah; no injuries were reported. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/21; PCHR 3/25)

Israel confiscated the PA foreign minister Riyad al-Maliki’s VIP travel permit upon his return to the West Bank because he had met with the ICC chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda on 3/18. The PA foreign ministry called Israel’s decision an “attack against the State of Palestine.” The foreign minister of Luxembourg Jean Asselborn said his country deeply regretted the retaliatory action by Israel. (AP, AX, HA, REU, TOI, WAFA 3/21; AJ, WAFA, WAFA 3/22; WAFA 3/23; WAFA 3/24)

The PA started inoculating Palestinian medical staff, cancer and kidney patients, and people over the age of 75 in the West Bank against the COVID-19 virus. 40,000 doses of vaccine in the West Bank and 20,000 doses in Gaza arrived on 3/17. (AP, HA, WAFA, WAFA 3/21)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers stole and vandalized some 2,400 almond seedlings in Dayr Nidham. Israeli forces seized 1 tractor in Kafr al-Dik. 9 Palestinians were arrested, including 8 during raids in and around Salfit and Hebron, 1 was arrested at a checkpoint south of Tulkarm. In East Jerusalem, 1 Palestinian was arrested in the Old City. Off the coast of Gaza, Israel naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya; no injuries were reported. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at Palestinian shepherds east of Juhur al-Dik. (WAFA 3/20; PCHR 3/25)

The PA announced that it had eased some of the COVID-19-related lockdown measures, including allowing commercial stores and public venues to reopen during the daytime. (WAFA 3/20)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas released a picture of him being vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus. (WAFA 3/20; HA 3/21)

Large crowds of protesters demonstrated against Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu with some 20,000 people outside of his official residence and thousands elsewhere in Israel. The large demonstrations happened 3 days before the Israeli elections on 3/23. (AJ 3/20)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers set fire to 2 vehicles and sprayed racist graffiti in Bayt Iksa. Israeli settlers also attacked 1 Palestinian man in Susiya, causing moderate injuries. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers toured a site near Luban al-Sharqiyya, leading to clashes between the settlers’ military escort and Palestinians, causing tear-gas related injures. Israeli forces shot and killed 1 Palestinian man during a protest in Bayt Dajan; the man, who is an imam at a local mosque, was shot in the head. Israeli forces also violently dispersed Palestinian protesters in ‘Ayn al-Bayda, causing injuries from physical assault with rifle butts. 2 Palestinians were arrested, including 1 during a house raid in Tura and 1 at a checkpoint near Jenin. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces violently dispersed an anti-eviction protest in Shaykh Jarrah, causing injuries. Off the coast of Gaza, Israel naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya; no injuries were reported. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at agricultural lands east of al-Maghazi; no injuries were reported. In Israel, Palestinians continued their weekly protest against gun violence and Israeli police inaction in Umm al-Fahm and Qalansawe. (AJ, AJ, AP, HA, HA, MEE, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/19; PCHR, WAFA 3/20; PCHR 3/25; HA 3/26)

In the West Bank, 9 Palestinians were arrested during raids in Bayt Umar, Ya‘bad, Hebron, Jalazun, Qalandia, Salfit, Abu Dis, and Hizma; during a raid in Bayt Umar, Israeli forces assaulted 4 members of the same family. In East Jerusalem, 1 Palestinian family cleared their house in preparation of its demolition by Israel in Silwan. 2 Palestinians were arrested during house raids in al-Tur. In Israel, Palestinians from the Naqab desert protested in West Jerusalem against Israeli demolition of their property. (WAFA, WAFA 3/18; PCHR 3/25)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas fired Nasser al-Kidwa as the chairperson of the Yasir Arafat Foundation and assigned Ali Muhanna as acting chairperson. President Abbas fired al-Kidwa from the Fatah Central Committee on 3/11 because al-Kidwa is running in the upcoming elections on a separate list from Fatah. Al-Kidwa is the nephew of Yasir Arafat. (WAFA 3/18)

The ICC said it had sent formal notices to Israel and the PA, giving them 1 month to seek deferral by providing evidence that they are carrying out their own investigations. PA foreign minister Riyad al-Maliki also met with the ICC chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda in the Hague to discuss PA cooperation with the investigation. (AP, WAFA 3/18; HA 3/20)

According to Axios reporting, the UAE leadership is “furious” at Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu for seeking to use the country and its crown price Mohammed bin Zayed as a prop in his election campaign. Prime Minister Netanyahu planned to travel to the UAE on 3/11 but had to cancel when Jordan closed its airspace to him. Adding to the UAE, the leadership’s dismay at Netanyahu is in his proclamation that the UAE would invest $10 billion in Israel and an interview from 3/15 where Netanyahu claimed that bin Zayed had praised is economic leadership. The UAE retaliated by saying that the UAE investment is in its preliminary phase, that the country would “not be a part in any internal electioneering in Israel,” and by suspending a planned summit. Netanyahu has been pressuring the UAE to host a summit for Israel, the U.S., and other countries that have normalized relations with Israel in the last year, but this summit is now postponed. (HA, NAT 8/17; AJ, ALM, AP, AX, CNN, HA, TOI 3/18; ALM 3/19)

Ireland said it would contribute $7.14 million a year to UNRWA over the next 3 years. (WAFA 3/18)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers demolished part of a Palestinian-owned house in Hebron. Israeli settlers also stole 40 olive saplings in Jalud. Israeli forces razed 5 dunams (1.2 acres) of land, including 20 olive trees, in Ras Karkar. Israeli forces also seized an agricultural structure east of Yatta. 1 Palestinian was severely injuried after stepping on an unexploded ordinance left behind by Israeli forces east of Jericho. 13 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and around Bethlehem, Tuqu‘, Tulkarm, Qalqilya, Nablus, and Jericho. In East Jerusalem, 2 Palestinians were arrested during raids in Issawiyya. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/17; PCHR 3/18)

Haaretz reported that the Israeli Jerusalem municipality had asked the court for local affairs to reactivate demolition orders against 70 structures in al-Bustan, which would displace 1,500 Palestinians. The Israeli municipality wants to place a tourism park named The King’s Garden where the 70 structures are located, but plans for the structure demolitions have been suspended during the negotiations between residents and the municipality. Now, the municipality wants to push forward with its plans without a settlement. (HA 3/17; HA, WAFA 3/18)

60,000 COVID-19 vaccines provided by the WHO COVAX program to the PA arrived in Israel. 40,000 will be shipped to the West Bank and 20,000 to Gaza. PA health minister Mai al-Kaila said the PA will wait to use the AstraZeneca vaccines until the WHO confirms that they are safe to use. Many EU countries have suspended using the AstraZeneca vaccines after 1 otherwise healthy Danish woman died and 3 Norwegian health workers were in severe condition from blood clots after receiving the vaccine. (AJ, ALM, AP, HA, WAFA 3/17)

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Israeli police officers in a Palestinian-Israeli area of Israel that they should bring criminals to their “breaking point” and that they will catch them and “put them behind bars, maybe kill some of them.” (HA 3/17)

During a televised speech, Lebanese president Michel Aoun told prime minister-designate Saad Hariri to form a government or resign so that someone capable can take the position. (AJ, AP 3/17)

UAE newspaper The National reported that it had obtained a 4-page internal memo from the U.S. Biden administration dubbed The US-Palestinian Reset and Path Forward. The memo suggests that the Biden administration will roll back Trump administration policies on Palestine, including reestablishing diplomatic contacts with the PA and restarting U.S. financial assistance to Palestinians, including a $15 million COVID-19 aid package. (NAT 3/17; AJ, HA 3/18)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers raided Awarta; no injuries were reported. Israeli forces razed 4 dunums (1 acre) of farmland in Bayt Jala. 7 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and around Ramallah, Kafr Haris, Qabatiya, and al-Khadir. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces clashed with Palestinians during a raid in Kafr ‘Aqab, injuring 11 Palestinians using rubber-coated bullets and 31 suffered tear-gas related injuries. Israeli forces also seized 3 residential caravans and demolished 2 stores in Kafr ‘Aqab. 3 Palestinian minors were arrested during late-night raids in Issawiyya. In Gaza, Israeli forces made incursions and leveled land east of Jabaliya and east of al-Bureij refugee camp. Israeli forces also opened fire at agricultural lands east of Khuza‘a; no injuries were reported. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/16; WAFA 3/17; PCHR 3/18)

Delegations from various Palestinian factions continued talks about national unity and upcoming elections in Cairo. (WAFA, WAFA 3/16)

The Syrian military said it had intercepted Israeli-fired missiles near Damascus. (HA 3/16; ALM 3/17)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers destroyed a Palestinian-owned fence in Qaryut. Israeli forces shot and injured 2 Palestinians and arrested 1 other in Jalazun refugee camp near the Beit El settlement; Israeli forces claimed the 3 men were planning to throw Molotov cocktails at settler homes. Israeli forces also raided Bayt Dajan, leading to clashes; no injuries were reported. Elsewhere, Israeli forces demolished 3 agricultural structures in Bayt Ta‘mir. Israeli forces also seized some 100 Palestinian-owned sheep near Yatta, claiming they had entered a restricted area. Palestinian farmers were stuck in the “seam zone” for 3 hours waiting for Israeli forces to open a gate after they had tended their land, on the other side of the separation barrier from their homes near Salfit. 13 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and around Yatta, Bayt Umar, Birzeit, Tulkarm, Anabta, and Ya‘bad. In East Jerusalem, 1 Palestinian family demolished their own home in Silwan and 1 Palestinian demolished his own restaurant in Jabal Mukabir. 4 Palestinians were arrested during raids in Silwan and Shu‘fat refugee camp. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya; no injuries were reported. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at agricultural lands east of Khuza‘a; no injuries were reported. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/15; JP, TOI, WAFA 3/16; PCHR 3/18)

19 Democrats in the U.S. house of representatives sent a letter to U.S. secretary of state Antony Blinken urging him to pressure Israel to provide vaccines for all Palestinians in the occupied territories, citing international law. The letter was written by Mark Pocan (D-WI) and André Carson (D-IN). 5 senators wrote a similar letter to Secretary Blinken on 3/12. (HILL 3/15)

In the West Bank, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, accompanied by Israeli settlers, toured Susiya, closing off the town and surrounding area to Palestinians. Israeli authorities approved seizure of a tract of Palestinian-owned land in Husan and Nahalin for settlement expansion. Israeli forces shot and injured 1 Palestinian during a raid in Hizma. Israeli forces also assaulted 1 Palestinian in Kafr Haris; Israeli forces said they thought the man intended to stab someone in a nearby settlement but did not arrest him after talking to his employer who confirmed he was waiting to get picked up. Elsewhere, Israeli forces raided Qaryut, leading to tear-gas related injuries and 1 Palestinian Red Crescent vehicle was vandalized by Israeli forces. 11 Palestinians were arrested, including 10 during raids in and around Yatta, Bayt Umar, Tuqu‘, Marda, and Hizma; 1 was arrested at a checkpoint south of Jenin. In East Jerusalem, 11 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in al-Tur, Silwan, Shu‘fat, and Issawiyya. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya; no injuries were reported. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at agricultural lands east of al-Qarara and north of Bayt Hanun; no injuries were reported. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/14; PCHR 3/18)

Jamila al-Shanti became the 1st woman to gain a seat on the 15-member Hamas politburo. (ALM 3/14)

Palestinian refugees in ‘Ayn al-Hilweh refugee camp in Lebanon protested outside UNRWA offices against unaffordable food prices. (MEMO 3/15)

Kosovo opened its embassy to Israel in Jerusalem. Kosovo promised to open an embassy in Jerusalem as part of a normalization agreement between the U.S., Israel, and Kosovo on 9/4/2020, where the latter received financial incentives and recognition of the country. The PA and the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation denounced Kosovo’s decision. (AJ, AP, HA, HILL, REU 3/14; ALM, WAFA, WAFA 3/15; WAFA 3/18)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers masked and armed with clubs attacked a Palestinian family of 10, including 8 children, as they were working their land south of Hebron; the 2 parents were evacuated to a hospital in Hebron; the settlers also vandalized the family’s vehicle. B’Tselem circulated a video of the incident; the family later said that it had filmed the whole incident because Israeli authorities had said it needed proof that settlers were frequently trespassing on their property. Israeli settlers also threw stones at Palestinian homes near Yatta. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers raided Burin, throwing stones at Palestinian homes; when Palestinians confronted the settlers, Israeli forces intervened, injuring 1 Palestinian with live ammunition and others with tear gas. Israeli settlers also threw stones at a Palestinian house in Huwwara. Israeli forces raided Silwad, leading to clashes with Palestinians; no injuries were reported. Israeli forces also leveled land near Nablus in preparation for expansion of the Rahalim settlement. Elsewhere, Israeli forces injured 1 Palestinian with a tear gas canister as he was trying to enter Israel for work by the separation barrier near Qalqilya. 4 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in and around Husan, Bayt Furik, and Jenin. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya; no injuries were reported. (AP, HA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/13; AJ, PCHR 3/18; HA 3/19)

The PA announced a total lockdown of the West Bank from 3/14–3/19 due to a rise in COVID-19 cases. (HA, WAFA 3/13)

In the West Bank, Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinians protesting settlement expansion in ‘Ayn al-Bayda. Israeli forces also violently dispersed a Palestinian protest in Bayt Dajan, injuring 3 with live ammunition, 2 with rubber-coated bullets, 2 with rifles, and others suffered tear-gas related injuries. In East Jerusalem, Israeli police prevented over 300 Palestinians from entering the Haram al-Sharif compound for Friday prayers and arrested 4 for being in East Jerusalem without a permit. In Gaza, 1 Palestinian was arrested for attempting to enter Israel by the Gaza fence east of al-Bureij. In Israel, thousands of Palestinian-Israelis protested gun violence in their community and police inaction to the problem in Jaljulya and Umm al-Fahm. (HA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/12; PCHR 3/18)

5 Democrats in the U.S. senate wrote a letter to U.S. secretary of state Antony Blinken urging him to pressure Israel to provide vaccines to all Palestinians in the occupied territories, citing international law. The letter was signed by Bernie Sanders (D-VT), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Tom Carper (D-DE), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), and Jeff Merkley (D-OR). 12 members of the house of representatives led by Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) and Mark Pocan (D-WI) also sent a letter to Secretary Blinken urging him to rescind the Trump administration’s “peace plan” and to pressure Israel to stop violations of international law. (HA, WAFA 3/13)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers opened fire at 2 Palestinian children near Yatta; no injuries were reported. 5 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in and around Dura, Bayt Ula, Sa‘ir, and Dheisheh refugee camp; during the raid in Dheisheh refugee camp, Israeli forces shot and injured 3 Palestinians with live ammunition. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at agricultural lands east of Johor al-Dik; no injuries were reported. (WAFA, WAFA 3/11; PCHR 3/18)

PA health minister Mai al-Kaila said that the PA will receive a donation of 100,000 doses of Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine from China. Health Minister al-Kaila also said she had urged COVAX to stand by its initial promise of providing vaccines for Palestinians. According to al-Kaila, COVAX had originally promised vaccines to arrive in mid-February but now they are scheduled for May, and the number of vaccines earmarked for the PA is reduced to 168,000 down from 240,000. A shipment of 40,000 Sputnik V vaccine doses arrived in Gaza donated by the UAE. The former Fatah politician Mohammad Dahlan claimed responsibility for the shipment as he is a close advisor to the UAE crown prince Mohammed bin Zayed. (HA, REU, WAFA, WAFA 3/11)

Israeli authorities banned PA governor of Jerusalem Adnan Ghaith from communicating with 50 Palestinians in the West Bank, including PA president Mahmoud Abbas and all members of the Fatah Central Committee. (WAFA 3/11)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas, in his capacity as leader of Fatah, ejected Nasser al-Kidwa from the Fatah party because al-Kidwa had announced he would run on his own electoral list in the upcoming Palestinian elections. (AJ, ALM, AP, HA, YNET, WAFA 3/11)

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu reportedly canceled a trip to the UAE, where he was to meet with UAE crown prince Mohammed bin Zayed, because his wife Sara Netanyahu was hospitalized with appendicitis. Other reports suggested that Prime Minister Netanyahu’s trip was canceled due to a political conflict with Jordan over the cancelation of the Jordanian crown prince Hussein bin Abdullah’s visit to the Haram al-Sharif compound on 3/10, which was canceled because Israel and Jordan could not agree on security arrangement. In turn, Jordan is said not to have allowed Netanyahu to use Jordanian air space to get to the UAE. It was later reported that Netanyahu had ordered Israeli air space closed to Jordan in retaliation, but that the Israeli transportation ministry had stalled the order, which was eventually canceled. (AJ, ALM, AP, HA, HA, HA, JP, REU, REU, REU 3/11; WAFA 3/12; HA 3/14)

Prime minister of the Czech Republic Andrej Babiš and prime minister of Hungary Viktor Orbán visited Israel to discuss cooperation in vaccine research and development with Prime Minister Netanyahu. During the trip, Prime Minister Babiš also opened a diplomatic office in Jerusalem. The Czech Republic received a donation of COVID-19 vaccines from Israel earlier this month. The PA and the Arab League condemned the Czech Republic’s decision to open the office in Jerusalem. (REU 3/9; HA, HA 3/11; ALM 3/12; AJ, HA, WAFA 3/13; HA, WAFA 3/14)

The Israeli state-owned Israel Aerospace Industries and the UAE state-owned weapons maker EDGE announced that they would develop an advanced drone defense system together. (ALM, REU 3/11; HA 3/12; JP 3/13)

Israel said it had concluded a military drill with Greece, Cyprus, and France in the Mediterranean Sea. (AJ, ALM, AP 3/12)

The Wall Street Journal reported that Israel has attacked at least 12 Iranian ships carrying oil and other goods en route to Syria since 2019, according to U.S. sources. 1 of the U.S. sources said that the Trump administration had tacitly supported the attacks. (HA, WSJ 3/11; ALM 3/15; HA 3/20)

Representatives from the UN, EU, Egypt, Jordan, Germany, and France met to discuss reviving talks between Israel and Palestine after the 2 countries’ elections this year. (AP 3/11)

A Los Angeles judge ruled to deny pro-Israeli lawyer David Abrams’s request to publicize the list of 64 presenters at a 2018 conference sponsored by Students for Justice in Palestine at the University of California – Los Angeles (UCLA). Abrams, who works for the Zionist Advocacy Center, claimed he was looking for information related to “anti-Israel terrorists” but was ultimately not allowed to dox the pro-Palestinian activists. The UCLA police had concluded that none of the speakers were “terrorists.” (PalLegal 3/11; LAT 3/17)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers with military escort toured shines in Kafr Haris and Sabastiyya, closing the areas to Palestinians. Israeli forces arrested 5 Palestinian children aged 8-12 in al-Rakiz near an Israeli settlement outpost; a video shows that the children were foraging vegetables when Israeli settlers started chasing them, leading to the Israeli forces arresting them. Israeli forces also demolished Palestinian-owned shops near Nablus, leading to confrontations with Palestinians, and delivered a demolition notice for a house under construction in Wadi Hummus in Area B. 9 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and around al-Khadir, Bayt Fajjar, Aida refugee camp, Jenin, and Qalqilya. In East Jerusalem, 66 Israeli settlers toured the Haram al-Sharif compound. Israeli forces arrested the former Mufti of Jerusalem Shaykh Ikrima Sabri at his home. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire and sprayed water at Palestinian fishermen within 6 nautical miles west of Gaza, causing damage to 1 boat; no injuries were reported. In Gaza, Israeli forces made incursions and leveled land east of al-Bureij and Dayr Balah. (AJ, HA, JP, MEE, TOI, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/10; AJ, AP, MEE, PCHR, WAFA 3/11; WAFA 3/12; NBC 3/13; HA 3/14)

Mohammad Dahlan, a political rival of PA president Mahmoud Abbas, said the UAE would send another 40,000 doses of the Sputnik V vaccine to Gaza. The UAE had previously sent 20,000 doses to Gaza in February. Dahlan, who is an advisor to the UAE crown price Mohammed bin Zayed, said the vaccines would arrive on 3/11. (TOI, TOI 3/10)

Yahya Sinwar won an internal Gazan election to retain his position as political leader of Hamas in Gaza. Sinwar narrowly defeated Nizar Awadallah, a founder of Hamas. Awadallah is said to represent the more conservative wing of Hamas. (AP 3/9; AJ, ALM, AP, HA, REU, TOI 3/10; HA 3/11)

An investigation by the Fake Reporter project showed that many of the 5,000 followers of Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Arabic language Facebook page were fake. On 2/1, Prime Minister Netanyahu launched an Arabic language Facebook page as part of his push to convince parts of the Palestinian-Israeli population to vote for him in the upcoming Israeli elections, but some 20% of the surveyed followers were reported to be fake. (HA 3/10)

The Israeli Museum for Islamic Art canceled plans to sell 268 items after the Al Thani Collection promised to provide sponsorship to the museum for 10 years. (AJ, AP 3/10)

An Iranian container ship was hit by an explosion said to be from an explosive device while in the Mediterranean. Iran later said Israel was behind the attack. Israeli officials denied commenting on Israeli involvement. (AJ, REU 3/12; HA, REU 3/13; HA 3/15)

In the West Bank, a large group of Israeli settlers threw stones at 2 Palestinian farmers near Dayr Istya. Israeli forces raided Burin, leading to clashes with Palestinians; tear-gas related injuries were reported. Israeli forces also delivered demolition orders for 10 structures in Jib and 1 agricultural structure in al-Walaja. 1 Palestinian was injured by an explosive device left behind by Israeli forces in the Masafer Yatta area. 5 Palestinians were arrested in Jenin and Hebron. In East Jerusalem, 3 Palestinians were arrested. In Israel, 2 Palestinians were arrested for working without a permit. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/9; WAFA 3/10; PCHR 3/11)

PA prime minister Mohammed Shtayyeh said that West Bank hospital intensive care units are at 100% capacity due to a sharp increase in severe COVID-19 cases. 1,693 new cases of the virus and 13 deaths were reported in the West Bank, while 135 new cases were reported in Gaza. (REU, WAFA 3/9)

In the West Bank, Israeli forces claimed that it had stopped 2 stabbing attempts, including 1 in Tubas where 1 Palestinian man was shot after allegedly trying to stab a soldier. WAFA reported that the man was shot during a late-night raid and was in serious condition; and in a settlement outpost where 1 Palestinian woman allegedly tried to stab 1 settler before being arrested. Israeli forces also shot with live ammunition and injured 2 Palestinian minors during a raid in al-Khadir; 1 was reported in serious condition and the other in moderate condition. Israeli forces claimed the 2 had thrown Molotov cocktails at the forces. Elsewhere, Israeli forces raided the offices of the Palestinian Health Work Committees in Ramallah, seizing computers; 2 were arrested. Israeli forces also violently dispersed a protest against settlement expansion south of Hebron, injuring 1 with a tear gas canister while others suffered tear-gas related injuries. Meanwhile, Israeli forces demolished 1 house under construction and a water well in Bani Na‘im and delivered a stop-work order for 3 houses under construction in Zawata. 13 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and around Ramallah, al-‘Arub refugee camp, Hebron, Tuqu‘, Aida refugee camp, Tubas, and Bayt Duqqu. In East Jerusalem, 1 Palestinian man died in a fire in Kafr Aqab after Israeli forces held up Israeli fire trucks at the Qalandia checkpoint, saying they had to wait for military escort; Kafr Aqab is located in the Israeli-annexed East Jerusalem municipality, but on the West Bank side of the separation wall. Israeli police prevented Palestinians from holding an event celebrating International Women’s Day in al-Tur, arresting 2 women and seizing clothes and other material on display; Israeli police said the event was arranged by the PA. Israel considers PA activity in East Jerusalem illegal. 4 Palestinians were also arrested in Shu‘fat refugee camp. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at agricultural lands east of Khuza‘a; no injuries were reported. (ALM, HA, HA, HA, TOI, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/8; HA 3/9; PCHR 3/11)

Israel began vaccinating Palestinians in the West Bank who hold Israeli work permits against the COVID-19 virus. Israel has allocated enough doses for 120,000 Palestinian workers. (HA, WAPO 3/8)

Hezbollah said that it and Lebanese forces in 2 separate incidents had intercepted Israeli drones flying over Lebanese air space. (HA 3/9)

In Lebanon, protests continued for the 7th day in a row as the Lebanese financial crisis continued to worsen and the country’s political crisis remained unresolved. (AJ, HA, REU 3/8)

In the West Bank, 5 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and around Qalandia refugee camp, Hizma, Dahariyya, and Jenin. Off the coast of Gaza, 3 Palestinian fishermen were killed in an explosion northwest of Khan Yunis; there were conflicting narratives about how the explosion happened with reports of an Israeli naval attack and of a missile fired from Gaza. Israel denied responsibility and the interior ministry in Gaza said it would investigate the incident; the investigation concluded on 3/11 with the government saying an Israeli drone laden with explosive was caught in a fishermen’s net, killing the 3 fishermen. the Al Mezan Center for Human Rights had claimed that it was a militant faction from Gaza who was responsible. Israeli naval forces had earlier in the day opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Gaza city, causing damage to 1 boat. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at Palestinian herders east of Khan Yunis; no injuries were reported. (AJ, HA, PCHR, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/7; HA 3/9; ALM, HA, PCHR, REU 3/11)

1 Palestinian man was sentenced to 2 years in prison, based on a plea bargain, by an Israeli military judge for not preventing an attack on an Israeli settler and for being a member of the PFLP. In the sentencing, the judge said a plea bargain had been reached, reducing the sentence because several Palestinians had been tortured during the interrogation related to the case. (TOI 3/7; HA 3/8)

According to Axios, PA civil affairs minister Hussein al-Sheikh sent a letter to the U.S. deputy assistant secretary of state for Israel-Palestine Hady Amr asking for U.S. support in the upcoming Palestinian elections and saying that Hamas has committed itself to nonviolence and the PLO parameters for a 2-state solution. Hamas has yet to publicly confirm Civil Affairs Minister al-Sheikh’s statement. (AX 3/10)

PA foreign minister Riyad al-Maliki said he will travel to the Hague to meet with ICC officials to discuss the investigations into possible war crimes committed by Israel. (WAFA 3/7)

Meretz (Vigor) leader Nitzan Horowitz said that Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israeli settlers were responsible for the ICC investigation, drawing ire from the Israeli right. Several right-wing leaders said they would not sit in a coalition with Meretz based on those statements. Horowitz said the ICC investigation was a result of “unbridled settlement” and Israeli refusal to engage in negotiations with Palestinians. (HA, HA 3/7)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers vandalized 15 olive trees in Artas. Israeli settlers with military escort also forced Palestinian farmers to leave their land in Kisan. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers vandalized Palestinian-owned vehicles in Bruqin. Israeli authorities issued a military order seizing more than 658 dunams (163 acres) of Palestinian-owned land in al-‘Ubaydiyya. 10 Palestinians were arrested, including 4 near the separation barrier and 6 during raids in Hizma, Hebron, al-‘Arub refugee camp, and Nablus; clashes erupted during the raid in Hizma, leading to tear-gas related injuries. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/6; PCHR 3/11)

Demonstrations against Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu continued for the 37th Saturday in a row. Protesters were demanding Prime Minister Netanyahu’s resignation over Israel’s COVID-19 response, handling of the Israeli economy, and the corruption cases against him. (HA 3/6; WAFA 3/7)

Lebanese caretaker prime minister Hassan Diab threatened to resign to pressure politicians to form a government. Diab’s threat came as Lebanon entered the 5th day of mass protest as the country is facing a deep financial crisis in parallel with its political crisis. (HA, REU 3/6; AJ 3/7)

In the West Bank, Israel settlers with military escort raided Madama, leading to confrontations with Palestinians; no injuries were reported. Israeli forces violently dispersed anti-settlement protests in Bayt Dajan and Kafr Qaddum; tear-gas related injuries were reported. 7 Palestinians were arrested, including 7 during late-night raids in Yatta, Halhul, and al-Arub refugee camp, and 1 was arrested at a checkpoint near Bethlehem. In East Jerusalem, 2 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Silwan. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya, injuring 2 who were treated at a hospital. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at agricultural lands east of Juhur al-Dik; no injuries were reported. In Israel, thousands of Palestinian-Israelis in Umm al-Fahm protested Israeli police brutality directed at the Palestinian community in Israel; the mayor of Umm al-Fahm was threatened by Israeli police before the protest, saying that he would be held responsible for any disorder during the protest. (HA, MEE, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/5; WAFA 3/6; HA 3/7; PCHR 3/11)

The World Bank approved a $15 million grant to help Palestinian municipalities maintain services and hire people affected by COVID-19-related layoffs. (WAFA 3/6)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers vandalized 1 Palestinian-owned agricultural structure in Kafr al-Dik. Israeli forces delivered demolition orders for 7 Palestinian-owned homes in Ma‘in. 17 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and around al-Khadir, Husan, Hebron, Nablus, Tulkarm, Abu Dis, ‘Azun, Beita, Ramallah, al-Bireh, Sabastiyya, and Jenin refugee camp. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces seized, for a 2d time, tents sheltering a family whose house was demolished in Issawiyya. 11 Palestinians were arrested during raids in Issawiyya, Shu‘fat refugee camp, and al-Tur; confrontations erupted during the raids in Issawiyya, leading to tear-gas related injuries and damage to property. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at agricultural lands east of Dayr al-Balah; no injuries were reported. (PCHR, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/4; PCHR 3/11)

Israeli authorities allowed changes to the structure of al-Ibrahimi Mosque, allowing the construction of an elevator to the designated Jewish area of the mosque. (WAFA 3/4)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas extended the COVID-19-related state of emergency for another 30 days. (WAFA 3/4)

According to Haaretz reporting, the Shin Bet has been threatening some Palestinian activists with administrative detention if they run in the Palestinian Legislative Council elections. Haaretz confirmed that at least 1 Palestinian activist was arrested and put in administrative detention for 4 months after announcing that he would run in the elections. (HA 3/4)

Danish prime minister Mette Frederiksen and Austrian chancellor Sebastian Kurz met with Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem to discuss a joint COVID-19 plan. Prime Minister Frederiksen had, prior to the trip, praised Israel’s vaccination campaign and said that Denmark is considering opening a vaccine factory with and/or in Israel, leading her own left-wing coalition to denounce her trip. The EU expressed dismay at the 2 European leaders’ trip, saying that cooperation on COVID-19 response was an EU issue 1st and foremost. (POL, POL 3/1; GDN, HA, REU 3/2; GDN, POL 3/3; AP, DR.DK, HA, POL, REU, TOI 3/4)

U.S. vice president Kamala Harris spoke with Prime Minister Netanyahu to discuss the ICC investigation into Israel. Vice President Harris expressed support for the normalization deals between Israel, the U.S., and several Arab and African countries during the Trump administration. (REU 3/4; AJ, HA, TOI 3/5)

Israeli defense minister Benny Gantz told FOX News that Israel is constantly updating preparations to strike Iran. Defense Minister Gantz also said that Hezbollah has hundreds of thousands of missiles. (AP, AJ, FOX, HA 3/5)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers smashed the windows of 3 Palestinian houses and 2 vehicles in Huwwara. Israeli forces distributed notices to Palestinians in Yatta, declaring a large area east of the city Israeli state land. 6 Palestinians were arrested during raids in al-Fawar refugee camp, Birzeit, Nablus, Jenin refugee camp, and Ya‘bad; 5 Palestinians were injured during confrontations with Israeli forces spawning from the raids in Jenin and al-Fawar refugee camp, including 1 by live ammunition, 2 by glass shards, and 2 by rubber-coated bullets. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces demolished 1 Palestinian-owned house and 3 shops in Shu‘fat refugee camp. 2 Palestinians were arrested during raids in Jabal Mukabir. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at agricultural lands east of Abasan, Khuza‘a, al-Shuka, and al-Qarara; no injuries were reported. In Israel, Israelis attacked a Palestinian news crew working for Anadolu news agency in West Jerusalem, vandalizing their car. (HA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/3; PCHR 3/4)

ICC chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda announced that the ICC will start a formal investigation into war crimes committed in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Gaza. On 2/5, the ICC judges decided that the ICC does have jurisdiction in the occupied territories. Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the opening of a formal investigation “the essence of Antisemitism.” Both the PA and Hamas welcomed the investigation. Many human rights organizations likewise lauded the decision to investigate. The U.S. state department released a statement saying that the U.S. “opposes the ICC investigation into the Palestinian situation.” In the 1st stage of the investigation, Israel and the Palestinian parties have 30 days to inform the court if they will investigate alleged criminals themselves. (AJ, AP, BBC, DOS, GDN, HA, HA, HA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/3; AHQ, AJ, AP, HA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/4)

Israeli minister of environmental protection Gila Gamliel said Iran was behind an oil spill in the Mediterranean in what she described as “environmental terrorism.” According to Haaretz, Israeli military and intelligence agencies were caught by surprise by Environmental Protection Minister Gamliel’s announcement. The Israeli defense ministry later said it had found no evidence of Gamliel’s claim. (AP, HA, REU 3/3; AP, GDN, HA, TOI 3/4)

1 U.S. contractor died of a heart of attack during an attack on the ‘Ayn al-Asad air base in Iraq. At least 10 missiles were fired at the base. (AJ, AJ, AP, HA 3/3; HA 3/4)

In the West Bank, 1 Israeli settler rammed his car into 1 Palestinian east of Qalandia, causing injuries. Israeli settlers also threw stones at Palestinian houses and vehicles in Jalud, causing damage to the windows of several houses and vehicles. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers vandalized cars and houses in Huwwara. Israeli forces demolished parts of a Palestinian-owned house in Battir and 3 houses in the Masafer Yatta area. Israeli forces also raided ‘Ayn Yabrud and fired tear gas canisters, causing damage to 1 building and leading to tear-gas related injuries. 19 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and around Ramallah, al-Khadir, Hebron, Tell, Nablus, Balata, Tulkarm, Jenin, and Jericho. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces injured 2 Palestinians during a house raid in Issawiyya and 5 Israeli soldiers were injured in subsequent clashes in the area; tear-gas related injuries were also reported. 7 Palestinians were arrested, including 1 at the Haram al-Sharif compound, and 6 during raids in the Old City, al-Tur, and Issawiyya. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire and sprayed water at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Gaza, causing damage to 1 boat; no injuries were reported. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/2; MEMO 3/3; PCHR 3/4)

A day after receiving criticism from Palestinian NGOs about the COVID-19 vaccination distribution, the PA admitted that some vaccines earmarked for health workers had gone elsewhere. 1,200 of 12,000 vaccines had been given to the Palestinian national football team, government ministers, presidential guards, and members of the PLO executive committee. 200 were sent to Jordan to be given to members of the royal court. (AJ, AP 3/3; SKY 3/4)

As the Lebanese pound reach a new record low amidst the country’s economic crisis, protests began in several places throughout the country, with road closures and burning tires. (AJ 3/2)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers vandalized 1 electrical panel in Asira. 1 Israeli settler rammed his car into a Palestinian-owned flock of sheep in the northern Jordan Valley, killing 4 of the sheep and injuring several others; according to the Palestinian owner of the sheep, he was forced to pay for the repairs to the settler’s car by Israeli forces. Israeli forces seized 1 Palestinian-owned tractor in Birin and demolished 2 agricultural barracks in Fasayil. 19 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and around Hizma, Bayt Kahil, Hebron, Jenin, and Abu Dis. In East Jerusalem, Israeli settlers set fire to the Romanian Church Monastery in the Old City, causing damage. Israeli forces demolished 1 Palestinian-owned home in Issawiyya and 1 Palestinian family demolished their own house in Silwan to avoid exorbitant Israeli demolition fees. 1 Palestinian minor was arrested in Issawiyya. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/1; PCHR 3/4)

Israel sentenced the Palestinian lawmaker Khalida Jarrar to 2 years in prison for holding a position in the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), which Israel considers a terror organization. Jarrar will serve 7 months of the sentence, as she has been held in administrative detention since October 2019. Jarrar has served several years in Israeli prison for her membership to the PFLP. (ADM, HA, WAFA 3/1; AP 3/2)

Several Palestinian NGOs called on the PA to investigate rumors that some PA officials have been getting COVID-19 vaccines ahead of their turn in the formal vaccination scheme. There were also rumors about a black market for COVID-19 vaccines smuggled from Israel and available for purchase in the West Bank. (HA 3/3)

The Israeli government approved a plan to combat gun violence in Palestinian towns in Israel, allocating $45.5 million to 5 police stations and a special police unit to combat crime in the Palestinian community. Palestinian-Israeli members of Knesset criticized the plan for deferring the larger portion of it to after the Israeli elections and said that the government approvals were “crumbs” of the Israeli police budget. (HA 3/2)

Prime minister elect of Kosovo Albin Kurti said he might change the location of Kosovo’s future embassy to Israel from Jerusalem to another city after meeting with the Turkish ambassador in Pristina. Turkish prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has warned Kosovo about the repercussions of opening an embassy to Israel in Jerusalem. (AP 3/1; HA 3/2)

In the West Bank, large groups of Israeli settlers chanted racist slogans at Palestinians in Hebron and Israeli forces closed off large portions of the city for its Palestinian residents. Israeli forces assaulted and arrested 1 Palestinian minor in Jayyous. In East Jerusalem, Israeli settlers attacked 1 Palestinian minor with stones in the French Hill neighborhood, causing severe injuries to his face. Some 230 Israeli settlers also stormed the Haram al-Sharif compound; the PA and Jordan condemned Israel for allowing the settlers access. Israeli forces raided Silwan leading to clashes with Palestinians; tear-gas related injuries were reported. 3 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in al-Tur and Issawiyya. In Israel, Israelis attacked a transport van and its Palestinian driver in West Jerusalem after yelling that the driver was “Arab,” when the Palestinian driver tried to escape the mob he inadvertently killed 1 Israeli man with his vehicle; Israeli police initially arrested the Palestinian man but released him 36 hours and started rounding up 12 Israelis who had attacked the Palestinian man; the Palestinian man’s lawyer said in court that the attack was “a lynching.” (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 2/28; JP 3/1; HA, PCHR 3/4)

All checkpoints to Gaza and the West Bank were closed by Israel for the Purim holiday. Closures ended at midnight. (HA 2/25)

The Israeli cabinet approved starting to vaccinate Palestinians from the West Bank holding Israeli work permits and Palestinians working in Israeli settlements. Vaccination centers will be set up at West Bank crossings. The decision came days after the PA said that Israel and the PA had agreed that Israel would vaccinate Palestinian workers. (AP, HA, NYT, REU, TOI, TOI 2/28)

8 of 9 judges on the Israeli supreme court voted to overturn the Israeli central elections committee’s decision to disqualify the Palestinian-Israeli Labor party candidate Ibtisam Mara’ana from running in the Israeli elections. The Israeli central elections committee disqualified Mara’ana from running upon request by the racist far-right Otzma Yehudit (Jewish Power) party on 2/17. (HA 2/28)

Israel designated the Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity organization a terrorist organization for its ties to the Palestinian Front for the Liberation of Palestine. (JP 2/28)

The Syrian army said Israel fired rockets at southern Damascus from the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights; there were no reports of casualties or damage. (AP, HA 2/28; AJ, JP 3/1)

Iran rejected an invitation to discuss reviving the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) at an informal meeting with the U.S. and European stakeholders, saying that European and American parties have made actions and statements in the recent past that do not make the timing right for Iran. Iran later said that the U.S. should lift the sanctions imposed by the Trump administration before the parties can begin to engage on reviving the JCPOA. (AJ 2/28; REU 3/1)

Some 450 lawmakers in European countries and in the EU parliament signed a letter to EU High Representative Josep Borrell and European foreign ministers urging them to pressure Israel to stop the “de facto annexation” of the West Bank. (HA 2/28; WAFA 3/1)

In the West Bank, Israeli forces seized 2 Palestinian-owned tractors in Bidya. 2 Palestinians were arrested at the Qalandia and Huwwara checkpoints In Gaza, 2 Palestinian minors were hospitalized after Israeli naval forces opened fire at them while on a beach near Rafah. Israeli naval forces also opened fire at Palestinian fishermen some 6 nautical miles northwest of Rafah and 3 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya; no injuries were reported. (WAFA, WAFA 2/27; PCHR 3/4)

All checkpoints to Gaza and the West Bank were closed by Israel for the Purim holiday. Closures are expected to last until the evening of 2/28. (HA 2/25)

The PA announced new COVID-19 restriction measures, including nighttime curfews starting at 7 p.m. and the closure of kindergartens and schools. PA prime minister Mohammed Shtayyeh also complained that restrictions on movement between districts were not being followed. The new restrictions were imposed as the PA health ministry has found that the British and South African COVID-19 mutations were more prevalent in the West Bank than previously thought. Both mutations spread the virus faster and cause more severe illness, including in children. As the new restrictions were announced, the PA health ministry said that the intensive care units in the West Bank were at 95 percent occupancy. A total of 2,236 Palestinians have died of the COVID-19 virus in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Gaza since the beginning of the outbreak. (AJ, HA, WAFA, WAFA 2/27)

The secretary general of the central committee of Fatah Jibril Rajoub said that Fatah is trying to get all Palestinian parties to run under 1 joint list for the upcoming Palestinian elections. (WAFA 2/27)

In Israel, Israeli protesters demonstrated against Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu for the 36th Saturday in a row. The protesters are demanding Prime Minister Netanyahu’s resignation for the government’s handling of the Israeli economy, his corruption cases, and the COVID-19 crisis. (HA 2/27)

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers stormed Kafr Haris, closing the area to Palestinians. Israeli settlers also uprooted 20 olive saplings in Kisan. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers and Israeli forces forced 4 families of Palestinian-Israelis picnicking near Jibiya to leave the area saying they were not allowed to be in the area; 1 of the settlers Zvi Bar Yosef has been filmed harassing Palestinians in the area before. Israeli settlers also hid metal rods in a road in Kafr Malik puncturing the wheels of a tractor. Israeli forces shot and injured 1 Palestinian minor with live ammunition near Ramallah. Israeli forces also violently dispersed protesters in Kafr Qaddum, Hebron, Bayt Dajan, and Dayr Jarir, leading to tear-gas related injuries; 1 Palestinian minor was taken to a hospital after being hit with a rubber-coated bullet during the protest in Kafr Qaddum. 2 Palestinians were arrested while riding a motorcycle in Ya‘bad. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces seized tents sheltering a family who’s house was demolished on 2/21 in Issawiyya. 3 Palestinians were arrested in Silwan and al-Tur. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 6 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya; no injuries were reported. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at Palestinian farmers east of Khan Yunis; no injuries were reported. In Israel, Israeli police violently dispersed a protest in Umm al-Fahm against gun violence in the Palestinian-Israeli community; several people were reported injured, including the mayor of Umm al-Fahm, MK Yousef Jabareen, and 1 Israeli police officer. (HA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 2/26; WAFA 2/27; HA 3/2; PCHR 3/4)

All checkpoints to Gaza and the West Bank were closed by Israel for the Purim holiday. Closures are expected to last until the evening of 2/28. (HA 2/25)

1 Palestinian man who is a resident of Israel and Gaza was indicted by Israel for providing intelligence about locations of Israeli Iron Dome batteries to Hamas. (HA 2/26)

The U.S. released a declassified report that concluded that Saudi crown prince Mohammed bin Salman is responsible for the murder of U.S. resident and journalist Jamal Khashoggi on 10/2/2018. Despite publishing that the administration had reaching that conclusion the Biden administration said it would not move to punish Mohammed bin Salman. President Joe Biden said during his presidential campaign that he would hold Saudi Arabia accountable for its actions after the Saudi royal family had been shielded by the Trump administration. (CNN, CNN, NPR, NYT, NYT 2/26; AJ, GDN 1/3)

European members of the UN security council, Estonia, France, Ireland, Norway, and the UK, issued a joint statement expressing deep concern “at the recent repeated demolitions and confiscation of items, including of EU- and donor-funded structures carried out by Israeli authorities at Humsa Al-Baqaia in the Jordan Valley.” (AJ 2/27; WAFA 2/28)

In the West Bank, Israeli authorities announced that it would seize 193 dunams (47.7 acres) of Palestinian-owned land near Dayr Dibwan for settlement expansion. 17 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and around Hebron, Tulkarm, Rujeib, Qalqilya, Ramallah, Rummana, Sawahara al-Sharqiyya, Aida refugee camp, Nablus, and Qusra. In East Jerusalem, 2 Palestinian was arrested during late-night raids in Issawiyya. (WAFA, WAFA 2/25; PCHR 3/4)

Israel imposed a general closure for Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza, closing all checkpoints for the Jewish Purim holiday. The closure was scheduled to be in effect from midnight on 2/25 to the night of 2/28. (HA 2/25)

The board of the Jewish National Fund voted to allocate $11.6 million to purchase land in the West Bank. (HA 2/25)

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Bahrain’s prime minister Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa spoke on the phone about the U.S. plan to reengage diplomatically with Iran about its nuclear program. (AP, HA 2/25)

Israel said that an Israeli-owned ship was attacked by 1 or 2 missiles in the Gulf of Oman. Other reports said that the damage done to the ship was caused by a blast, to which the cause had not been determined. Israeli defense officials claimed that the missiles were fired by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps. No injuries were reported, and the ship was able to continue to the UAE to repair the damage. Iran denied attacking the ship. (AJ, AP, HA, REU 2/26; REU 2/27; AJ, AP, HA, HA, REU 2/28; AJ, AP, HA, HA, REU 3/1)

Haaretz reported that 2 U.S. senators, Ben Cardin (D-MD) and Rob Portman (R-OH) were circulating a letter to U.S. secretary of state Antony Blinken calling on him to take a more forceful stance on the ICC’s investigation of Israel and Hamas, in order to shield Israel. The pro-Israel group J Street said it was circulating their own letter, calling Cardin and Portman’s letter an “unnecessary act of political posturing,” saying the U.S. state department already rejected the ICC’s decision. J Street also criticized the Cardin and Portman letter for using “distributed territories” instead of “occupied territories” to describe the West Bank. (HA 2/25)

The U.S. attacked what the Pentagon said were Iranian-backed militia groups in eastern Syria, killing 17 people. The Pentagon said the strikes were in retaliation for 1 missile fired at a U.S. facility in Irbil, Iraq, which killed 1 U.S. national and injured 6 others on 2/15. (REU 2/25; AP, BBC, CNN, HA, REU 2/26)

Japan donated $39.7 million to UNRWA, $30.2 million for UNRWA core programming, and $9.5 million for expanding school services in Gaza. (WAFA 2/25)

In the West Bank, 1 Israeli settler claimed that a Palestinian tried to stab him near the Yitzhar settlement; no injuries or arrests were reported. Israeli settlers also threw stones at Palestinian vehicles in the same area around Huwwara. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers stole 7 sheep from a Palestinian family in Jalud. Israeli forces shot and injured 3 Palestinians with rubber-coated bullets during a raid in Kaubar. 11 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in and around Tulkarm refugee camp, Anabta, Tell, Tubas, Kafr Malik, and Bethlehem. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 6 nautical miles west of Gaza City and within 4 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya; no injuries were reported. Israeli forces opened fire at Palestinian farmers and shepherds east of Khan Yunis; no injuries were reported. (HA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 2/24; PCHR 2/25)

U.S. secretary of State Antony Blinken announced that the U.S. will seek a seat at the UN Human Rights Council and that the U.S. would counter “unacceptable bias against Israel.” (ALM, JP, NBC, REU 2/24)

The chairman of the house foreign affairs committee Gregory Meeks (D-NY) said that even if Israel were to de jure annex the West Bank, he would not support leveraging U.S. military aid to Israel. Rep. Meeks has previously made comments to the opposite effect. (HA, MEE 2/24)

The U.S. state of Kentucky adopted the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) controversial working definition of anti-Semitism. Kentucky is the 1st U.S. state to adopt the IHRA’s working definition of anti-Semitism, which conflates criticism of Israel with anti-Semitism. For more about the IHRA working definition of anti-Semitism, see the IPS publication Zionism, Israel, and Anti-Semitism: Dangerous Conflation. (HA 2/28)

The Israeli high court of justice ruled that Israeli officials must explain why the Jerusalem cable car project was approved at Israel’s national infrastructure committee and not through the Jerusalem district and planning committee and why they have categorized the project as a transportation project and not a tourism project. The high court of justice gave the Israeli government until 4/22 to respond and meanwhile the project was ruled to be suspended. (ALM 3/10)