Monday, July 20, 2015

IDF troops on the Gaza border e. of Gaza City open fire on agricultural lands along the border fence, causing no injuries. In the West Bank, IDF troops conduct late-night raids and house searches in 2 villages nr. Hebron and 1 nr. Nablus, arresting 3 Palestinians; patrol during the day in 2 villages nr. Hebron and 1 nr. Jenin. Israeli forces demolish a scrap-selling facility nr. Hebron and another structure nr. al-Jalaita. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces arrest 5 Palestinians on late-night raids in the Old City, Silwan, and Kafr ‘Aqab , as well as 1 Palestinian as he is exiting Haram al-Sharif. (MNA, WAFA 7/20; PCHR 7/30)

Israel’s Knesset passes into a law an amendment to the penal code that will allow convicted stone-throwers to be sentenced to 10–20 years in prison. Furthermore, state prosecutors will no longer have to prove that those accused were trying to damage cars or harm people in order to secure convictions. (HA, TOI, YA 7/21)

The EU Council reaffirms its commitment to the Middle East peace process and the 2-state solution, saying in a statement that it now depends on a “fundamental change” in Israeli policy. The council also calls on the Israeli govt. to “halt plans” to evacuate and relocate the Palestinian village Susiya nr. Hebron, for the PA to take “greater responsibility” in Gaza, and for the EU to fully implement its policies regarding Israel’s settlements. (AFP, EU press release, MEMO, YA 7/20; JP, MNA 7/21)

The UNSC unanimously approves a res. endorsing the nuclear deal announced by the P5+1 and Iran on 7/14. The UN, U.S., and EU will begin preparing to lift sanctions, so they can do so immediately when the IAEA reports that Iran has, by the end of 2015, accounted for its past and present nuclear activities and undertaken steps to constrain its nuclear program. (AFP, HA, REU, TOI, WAFA, YA 7/20)