Wednesday, June 18, 2014

In the Gaza Strip, Palestinians fire 2 rockets into s. Israel, causing light damage but no injuries. Subsequently, the IDF launches 5 air strikes, targeting military sites used by PRC and al-Qassam Brigades, in which 1 man is injured. In addition, IDF troops conduct a limited incursion to level land alongside the border fence nr. Khan Yunis, while separately, the IDF says that an explosive device is uncovered nr. the border fence. In the West Bank, IDF troops shoot and wound 1 Palestinian in ‘Askar r.c. nr. Nablus during a raid. Separately, IDF troops shoot and wound 1 nr. Nablus during a raid. Meanwhile, IDF troops demolish 7 houses across the s. West Bank: 3 in al-Khadir nr. Bethlehem and 4 nr. Hebron, leaving 7 families homeless. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in Hebron and 8 nearby villages, Nablus and nearby ‘Ayn Bayt al-Ma’ r.c. and 5 villages, 3 villages nr. Ramallah, and Jenin r.c. at night. (HA, MNA, YA 6/18; PCHR 6/19)

Israeli PM Netanyahu praises the security forces for the arrest of 53 former prisoners, who were released in the Shalit exchange deal in 2011 and recaptured as a part of OBK. An estimated 240 Palestinians have now been detained since the start of the operation, 180 of them affiliated with Hamas, according to Israeli media reports. Pres. Abbas condemns those behind the kidnapping, comments denounced by Hamas spokesperson Abu Zuhri. U.S. State Dept. spokesperson Psaki praises Abbas’s remarks, saying the administration is calling on Israelis and Palestinians to “show restraint during this difficult period.”