Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Leader of the messianic Temple Mount movement and ultranationalist MK Yehuda Glick (Likud) and MK Shuli Moalem-Refaeli (Jewish Home) visit Haram al-Sharif under heavy police protection. Their visit follows Israeli PM Netanyahu’s decision to temporarily lift his ban on MKs and ministers visiting the sanctuary for 1 day only (Netanyahu initially imposed the ban in 10/2015 amid escalating violence across the oPt; see JPS 45 [2, 3]). Israeli forces plan to assess today’s visit and to make a recommendation about the ban’s future. A spokesperson for the Islamic Waqf says the decision to lift the ban is “unacceptable” and shows that “extremist right-wing entities are in control of the Israeli occupation’s government.” Elsewhere in East Jerusalem, Israeli forces arrest 1 Palestinian in the Old City and another during a raid in Abu Dis. In the West Bank, IDF troops escort hundreds of Israeli settlers to visit Joseph’s Tomb near Nablus overnight, sparking clashes with stone-throwing Palestinian youths from nearby Balata refugee camp; 2 Palestinians are injured. IDF troops also arrest 8 Palestinians during late-night raids near Hebron and Bethlehem, and patrol in and around Qalqilya and Hebron. Israeli settlers throw stones at Palestinian Bedouin homes near Hebron, causing minor damage. Off Gaza’s coast, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats near Bayt Lahiya, causing no damage or injuries. (HA, MNA, TOI, WAFA, YA 8/29; TOI 8/30; PCHR 9/1; PCHR 9/14)

Israeli ambassador to Egypt Govrin flies to Cairo to resume his post. Along with 8 staffers, he will work out of his home rather than in the Israeli embassy, which was evacuated due to security concerns in 12/2016. (AP, TOI 8/29)