Friday, December 20, 2013

In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces kill 1 Palestinian and wound 1 other close to the border fence nr. Bayt Hanun, after the individuals had approached the fence to collect scrap metal. Separately, Israeli forces open fire on civilians nr. Jabaliya r.c. and also nr. Khan Yunis, wounding 2 in each case. In the Jabaliya incident, Israeli forces opened fire after Palestinians throw stones at border positions. Off the coast nr. Bayt Lahiya, Israeli naval vessels open fire on Palestinian fishermen, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 2 villages each nr. Bethlehem and Hebron at night; patrols in 2 villages nr. Jenin and 1 village nr. Qalqilya in the morning, and in 3 villages nr. Hebron at night. IDF troops violently disperse Palestinian, Israeli, and international protesters at weekly demonstrations against Israel’s separation wall, settlements and occupation in 3 villages nr. Ramallah (Bil‘in, Nabi Salih, and Ni‘lin), and 1 village nr. Qalqilya (Kafr Qaddum). There are no serious injuries reported. (MNA 12/20; PCHR 12/26)

UN-Arab League joint special envoy to Syria Lakhdar Brahimi says that around 30 countries would be invited to the planned peace conference in 1/2014, and that the U.S. and the Syrian opposition oppose Iran’s attendance. (AP 12/20)