Friday, August 26, 2011

Hamas officials say that all main Gaza factions have agreed to reimpose their cease-fire immediately, while Egyptian mediators work to secure the compliance of smaller factions. Islamic Jihad says it will observe the moratorium as long as Israel also ceases fire. Israel does not comment. Before the new cease-fire goes into effect, the PFLP and other unidentified Palestinians fire 1 Grad and 2 Qassam rockets fr. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or injuries. Israel does not respond. Israeli DM Barak authorizes construction of a kindergarten in Hebron’s Beit Romano settlement, home to some of the most extremist Jewish settlers. Meanwhile, Jewish settlers uproot olive trees in Qasra village nr. Nablus; when local Palestinians try to drive them away, IDF troops intervene, firing tear gas and live ammunition at the Palestinians, seriously injuring 1. The IDF also patrols in Kafr al-Dik village nr. Salfit. Palestinians (sometimes accompanied by Israeli and international activists) hold weekly nonviolent demonstrations against the separation wall, land confiscations, and settlement expansion in Bil‘in, al-Ma‘sara, and Ni‘lin, as well as at the Qalandia crossing into Jerusalem. IDF soldiers beat and fire rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas, and stun grenades at the protesters, causing no serious injuries, and arrest 2 Palestinians. (AP, MNA, YA 8/26; MNA, WP 8/27; PCHR 9/8; OCHA 9/9)

In Egypt, 100s of protesters rally outside the Israeli emb. after Friday prayers demanding the expulsion of the amb. (WP 8/28)