Thursday, November 15, 2018

In East Jerusalem, approximately 35 right-wing Jewish activists tour Haram al-Sharif. In the West Bank, IDF troops arrest 7 Palestinians and confiscate NIS 500,000 (approximately $134,731) during raids near Jenin, Tulkarm, Hebron, and Nablus; and patrol near Hebron, Tulkarm, and Salfit. Along Gaza’s border, Israeli forces conduct a limited incursion to level land near Khan Yunis and open fire on Palestinian shepherds and agricultural lands near Dayr al-Balah, causing no damage or injuries. (MNA, MNA, WAFA, WAFA 11/15; PCHR 11/22)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas signs accession papers for the State of Palestine to join 11 international organizations and conventions, including the Universal Postal Union, Convention on the Nationality of Married Women, Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child, Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, Basel Protocol on Liability and Compensation for Damage Resulting from Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and their Disposal, Vienna Convention of Road Traffic, Protocol concerning countries or territories at present occupied, Convention on Consent to Marriage, Minimum Age for Marriage and Registration of Marriages, Agreement Establishing the Common Fund for Commodities, and the International Convention on the Arrest of Ships. (MNA, TOI, WAFA 11/15)

One day after Israeli defense minister Avigdor Lieberman resigned in protest of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision to reach a cease-fire with the armed Palestinian groups in Gaza, both Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon and Interior Minister Aryeh Deri call for snap elections to be held as soon as possible. Meanwhile, hundreds of Israelis from communities near Gaza gather in central Tel Aviv to protest the government’s response to the recent rocket fire from Gaza. Many call for Netanyahu to resign. Netanyahu, for his part, presents to a group of leaders from the border communities a NIS 500 million (approximately $135 million) plan to support them over the next 2 years. (HA, HA, JP, YA 11/15; HA, MNA, TOI 11/16)

UNRWA commissioner general Pierre Krähenbühl says that the agency has almost entirely made up for the budget shortfall caused by U.S. president Trump’s decision to slash U.S. support for UNRWA earlier this year. He says that UNRWA has raised an addition $382 million, bringing the deficit to just $64 million. “I’ll be very honest in saying, I don’t think many people believed that we would be able to overcome a $446 million shortfall at the beginning of the year,” he says, crediting the EU, Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE for each upping their pledges of support this year. (AFP, TOI 11/15)