Thursday, December 20, 2018

IDF troops shoot and kill a Palestinian driver after he runs through a roadblock at the Beit El checkpoint late at night. The other occupants of the vehicle say that they were driving through a poorly lit area and that the deceased could not tell where he was going. Elsewhere in the West Bank, IDF troops arrest 3 Palestinians during raids near Ramallah and patrol near Tulkarm, Hebron, Bethlehem, and Ramallah. Unidentified assailants open fire on Israeli soldiers outside the Ofra settlement near Ramallah, causing no injuries. In East Jerusalem, right-wing Jewish activists puncture the tires of 40 Palestinian vehicles and spray racist graffiti in Bayt Hanina overnight. (HA, MNA, MNA, PCHR, TOI, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 12/20; EI, MNA, MNA, WAFA 12/21; PCHR 12/27)

Fatah Central Committee member Mohammed Shtayyeh announces that the PA recently informed the Israeli government that it would stop honoring past agreements should the IDF violent crackdown on the Ramallah area continue. He does not clarify which past agreements he is referring to. (WAFA 12/20)

The IDF announces that it has begun demolishing or sealing Hezbollah’s cross-border tunnels in the context of Operation Northern Shield. “This stage will be carried out with a number of techniques and measures, which will render the tunnels entirely unusable and will prevent Hezbollah from utilizing them and carrying out its plans,” according to an IDF statement. The IDF has reportedly uncovered 4 such tunnels so far. (TOI 12/20; HA, TOI 12/21)