Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Israeli rights groups Gisha and HaMoked reveal that Israel has tightened restrictions on what qualifies as a “humanitarian reason” for a Gazan to relocate to the West Bank, threatening to reclassify 1,000s of Gazans currently residing in the West Bank as “illegal aliens” at risk of being expelled to Gaza. Israeli naval vessels fire on Palestinian fishing boats off the n. Gaza coast, arresting 2 fishermen. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in Nablus and nr. Hebron. The UN reports that in the past wk., 2 Palestinians were killed in tunnel-related incidents, 1 in a collapse and 1 electrocuted; 4 were injured. Al-Mezan Center for Human Rights reports that in the past wk. Hamas-affiliated police in Gaza seized 674 humanitarian aid kits that were to be distributed to Bayt Hanun residents by an international organization through a local NGO. (NYT 6/17; OCHA, PCHR 6/18; OCHA Humanitarian Monitor 6/09)