Tuesday, March 20, 2018

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers chop down approximately 30 olive trees in a Palestinian grove near Bethlehem, and assault a number of Palestinian students on their way home from school in Yatta near Hebron. Undercover Israeli soldiers conduct a raid in Burqin near Jenin, sparking clashes with stone-throwing Palestinians; 6 Palestinians are injured and 1 is arrested. IDF troops arrest 13 Palestinians and confiscate 1 vehicle during late-night raids near Ramallah, Hebron, Tulkarm, Bethlehem, and Nablus; and patrol near Tulkarm, Qalqilya, and Hebron. One of the raids near Ramallah sparks clashes with stone-throwing Palestinians; 1 Palestinian is injured. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces arrest 20 Palestinians during late-night raids in Shu‘fat refugee camp and 2 during raids in Issawiyya. A Palestinian demolishes his own home in Jabal Mukabir to avoid paying Israeli demolition fees. Along Gaza’s border, IDF troops open fire on Palestinian farmers working near Khan Yunis, causing no damage or injuries. Israeli forces conduct limited incursions to level land near Khan Yunis, Jabaliya refugee camp, and Dayr al-Balah. (WAFA 3/20, 3/21; PCHR 3/22)

The PA releases a statement calling on Hamas to transfer control of Gaza “all at once.” The statement comes 1 day after PA president Abbas accused Hamas of perpetrating the 3/13 assassination attempt on PM Hamdallah and threatened further restrictions on Gaza. (JP, TOI 3/20)