Friday, April 8, 2016

Across the oPt, IDF troops violently disperse Palestinians, Israelis, and international activists at Friday demonstrations against Israel’s occupation, separation wall, and settlements in 4 villages nr. Ramallah (Bil‘in, Ni‘lin, Silwad, and Nabi Salih), Kafr Qaddum nr. Qalqilya, and 2 areas along Gaza’s border; 7 Palestinians are injured and at least 4 are arrested. On Gaza’s border, an explosive device detonates under an armored Israeli bulldozer, causing damage but no injuries. Off Gaza’s coast, Israeli naval forces open fire on 2 Palestinian fishing boats nr. Rafah, injuring 2 fishermen, arresting 4, and then confiscating the boats. In the West Bank, IDF troops conduct house searches and raids nr. Hebron and Bethlehem, arresting 2 Palestinians and issuing arrest summons to 4; patrols in 3 villages nr. Hebron. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces disperse Palestinians conducting a sit-in in Silwan in protest of Israeli efforts to Judaize the city; 6 Palestinians are arrested and a tent is confiscated. Israeli police arrest a Palestinian for allegedly planning a stabbing attack outside the Old City, and temporarily detain a shaykh at Haram al-Sharif, accusing him of “incitement.” (JP, MNA, TOI, YA 4/8; PCHR 4/14)

A U.S. State Dept. spokesperson says that the Obama admin. has not decided whether or not to support the draft UNSC res. condemning Israel’s settlements that the Palestinians circulated earlier in the week (a U.S. veto would scuttle the effort). Separately, 394 mbrs., or 90%, of the House of Representatives sign onto a letter calling on U.S. pres. Obama to “oppose and, if need be, veto one-sided UNSC resolutions,” inter alia. (USSD 4/8; TOI 4/9; JP 4/10; JTA 4/15)