Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Israel allows a 20 mW generator into Gaza for the electricity plant, along with 13 Egyptian engineers to install it. Responding to the IDF’s major incursion into s. Gaza on 12/11, Palestinians fire 17 rockets, 4 mortars fr. Gaza into Israel, lightly injuring 1 Israeli. A Palestinian is killed when a smuggling tunnel under the Rafah border collapses. In the West Bank, the IDF bars a Palestinian woman in labor fr. crossing a checkpoint to reach a Qalqilya hospital, forcing her to give birth at the checkpoint; conducts arrest raids, house searches nr. Hebron, Jenin, Qalqilya, Tulkarm. In n. Gaza, fights erupt btwn. a Fatah-affiliated family and local Hamas mbrs. painting slogans in preparation for Hamas’s 20th anniversary celebrations; no injuries are reported. (NYT, PCHR 12/13; OCHA 12/19; PCHR 12/27)

As agreed at Annapolis (see 11/27), Israeli, Palestinian negotiators meet to open final status talks, but discussions focus on ongoing Israeli settlement activity (see 12/4) and Palestinian rocket fire. No progress is made on core issues. (NYT, WT 12/13; NYT 12/24)