Monday, May 15, 2017

Thousands of Palestinians gather at rallies across the West Bank to commemorate the 69th anniversary of the Nakba. IDF troops violently disperse demonstrators in Bethlehem and 2 areas nr. Ramallah (the Beit El checkpoint and Nabi Salih); at least 15 Palestinians are injured. The IDF also shuts down the Beit El checkpoint later in the day. For a 2d day in a row, Palestinian activists block several roads nr. Ramallah in solidarity with the more than 1,500 Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike. Meanwhile, Israeli forces begin leveling land nr. Hebron in preparation for the construction of a new IDF watchtower. IDF troops conduct raids in Dahaysha r.c. nr. Bethlehem late at night, arresting 3 Palestinians and sparking clashes; 2 Palestinians are injured. They also arrest 16 Palestinians and issue 2 arrest summons during further raids nr. Jericho, Hebron, Ramallah, Bethlehem, Qalqilya, and Nablus; and patrol nr. Hebron and Qalqilya during the day. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces assault and arrest a Palestinian nr. Hizma and arrest 1 Palestinian during a latenight raid in Silwan. Off Gaza’s coast, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats nr. Jabaliya r.c. on 2 separate occasions, seriously injuring 1 fisherman (he succumbs to his injuries later in the day). They confiscate 2 boats and arrest 6 fishermen. (JP, MNA, TOI, WAFA 5/15; PCHR 5/18)