Sunday, March 26, 2017

Along Gaza’s border, IDF troops open fire on Palestinian agricultural lands nr. Khan Yunis, causing no major damage. Off Gaza’s coast, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats nr. Khan Yunis, causing no injuries or damage. In the West Bank, IDF troops arrest 7 Palestinians and issue 1 arrest summons during late-night raids nr. Hebron, Tulkarm, and Ramallah; and patrol nr. Salfit and Hebron. In East Jerusalem, 53 rightwing Jewish activists tour Haram al-Sharif. (MNA, WAFA 3/26; PCHR 3/30)

Amid the ongoing investigation of the 3/24 killing of senior Hamas military cmdr. Fuqaha, the Hamas-run interior ministry in Gaza indefinitely shuts down the Erez border crossing, except for humanitarian cases; orders all fishermen to return to the shore; and shuts down the Rafah border crossing into Egypt. (Most of these restrictions will remain in place through 4/6.) The Kerem Shalom border crossing remains open. (HA, JP, MNA, TOI 3/26; MNA 4/6)

A spokesperson for the residents of the Amona settlement outpost warns that if the Israeli govt. does not build them a new settlement, as PM Netanyahu promised before Amona’s evacuation and demolition in 2/2017 (see JPS 46 [3]), they will “have to unilaterally move onto the [designated] land” and build it themselves. The spokesperson is likely responding to reports in the Israeli press about Israel-U.S. talks in Washington last week, and specifically an unconfirmed report that the U.S. may condone the Amona replacement in exchange for other limitations on settlement growth. (JP 3/26; JP 3/27)