Monday, February 10, 2014

In the Gaza Strip, Palestinians fire 1 rocket into s. Israel, causing no damage or injuries. Later, a second rocket is fired, also causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in Hebron and 1 nearby village, Nablus, Tubas, 1 village and Jalazun r.c. nr. Ramallah at night; patrols in 2 villages each nr. Hebron and Ramallah, and in 1 village each nr. Jenin, Salfit, and Tulkarm at night. In East Jerusalem, Jewish extremists vandalize 16 cars in Silwan, and leave “price-tag” graffiti. (HA, ToI 2/10; PCHR 2/13)

A second round of UN-sponsored peace talks on Syria gets underway in Switzerland, with no sign of even a modest breakthrough. Meanwhile, Russia and China frustrate efforts to draw up a UNSC res. that would raise the prospect of sanctions against Damascus without unrestricted access for the delivery of humanitarian aid. Reps. from Russia promise to veto the res., saying that it would prepare the way for military strikes against the Syrian govt. Meanwhile, the OPCW says in a statement that Syria has shipped a 3rd batch of chemical weapons material out of its territory via an internationally accompanied Norwegian cargo vessel. (AP, MNA, REU 2/10)

The head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization, Ali Akbar Salehi, says that Tehran has developed new, more powerful centrifuges, used for enriching uranium. Salehi claims that the development does not violate the 6-mo. interim deal that went into effect on 1/20. Meanwhile, Pres. Ruhani states that the country’s doors are open to IAEA inspectors. (AFP, JP, REU 2/10)