Sunday, January 20, 2013

In an effort to reopen the Ramallah– Jerusalem road in al-Amari r.c. nr. Ramallah, Palestinian security forces open fire on Palestinians demonstrating in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners in Israel. Three Palestinian youths are wounded in the legs by live ammunition. (MNA 1/21)

Egyptian security forces seize 1 ton of explosives in the Sinai Peninsula allegedly bound for the Gaza Strip, the largest single such capture. Local media report that police have seized a total of 5 tons of explosives as well as disassembled rockets and automatic weapons in the last 3 mos.—all apparently headed for Gaza. Egyptian maj. gen. Sameeh Bashadi says that in the past 3 days, 10 Palestinians have been detained after entering Sinai illegally from the Gaza Strip and that a list of Palestinians entering Egypt through the tunnels has been distributed to the Egyptian security forces. (HA, MNA 1/20)

Israeli naval vessels open fire on Palestinian fishermen off the Gaza coast nr. al-Waha, causing no injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF storms the alKaramah protest tent village nr. Bayt Iksa, issues demolition and evacuation orders, and fires stun grenades and tear gas. The IDF also patrols in Jenin in the morning, in 1 village nr. Jenin in the afternoon, and in 3 villages nr. Ramallah at night; conducts house searches and arrest raids in Tubas and in 2 villages each nr. Hebron and Jenin at night. (MNA 1/20; PCHR 1/23)

Palestinian pres. Abbas arrives in Saudi Arabia to attend the 3d Arab Economic, Social and Developmental Summit, where he renews his call for urgent financial aid. Meanwhile, Palestinian union chief Bassam Zakarneh announces that PA civil servants will hold protests on 1/21 and strike on 1/23 to protest late payment of salaries. (JP 1/21; MNA 1/20)

Hamas official Ghazi Hammad announces that Tunisian pres. Moncef Marzouki will visit the Gaza Strip on 2/9, without giving further details. Meanwhile, Lebanon-based senior Hamas official Osama Hamdan arrives in the Gaza Strip for the 1st time on a visit of a few days. (AFP 1/20; JP 1/21)