Friday, September 14, 2018

Approximately 12,000 Palestinians gather along Gaza’s border to continue the Great March of Return protests. IDF troops violently disperse the protests near Rafah, Jabaliya refugee camp, al-Bureij refugee camp, Gaza City, and Khan Yunis; 3 Palestinians are killed and at least 3 more are injured. This brings the death toll stemming from the Great March of Return to 152. Amid the clashes, the IDF reports that one of its officers was injured by shrapnel from a pipe bomb thrown from across the border fence. Israeli forces subsequently shell 2 Hamas posts, causing damage to a school east of Khan Yunis. Elsewhere along Gaza’s border, Israeli forces conduct a limited incursion to level land along the border fence near Rafah. They also dismantle an IED that was placed along the border fence near Rafah for the 2d day in a row. On the other side of the border fence, Israeli firefighters put out 2 fires that were allegedly sparked by incendiary kite or balloon attacks emanating from Gaza. In the West Bank, Israeli forces set up roadblocks around Khan al-Ahmar, the Jerusalem-area Bedouin village slated for evacuation and demolition. Israeli troops later violently disperse hundreds of activists gathering to protest the roadblocks; 3 protesters are arrested. Separately, IDF troops violently disperse Palestinians and international solidarity activists at Friday protests against the Israeli occupation in Kafr Qaddum near Qalqilya and Ras Karkar near Ramallah; 1 Palestinian is injured. They also arrest 5 Palestinians during clashes sparked by IDF patrols in Bayt Umar near Hebron; arrest 2 more Palestinians during late-night raids in Nablus; and patrol in and around Hebron, Tulkarm, and Salfit. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces arrest 4 Palestinians during late-night raids in Shu‘fat refugee camp (EI, HA, HA, JP, MNA, MNA, MNA, MNA, MNA, TOI, YA 9/14; MNA 9/15; PCHR 9/20)

The New York Times reports that the Trump administration has decided to cut the last remaining $10 million in planned aid to the Palestinians this year. The money, which Congress authorized for expenditure in 2017, was set to support programs meant to build relationships between Israelis and Palestinians from the occupied Palestinian territories. USAID has reportedly redirected the $10 million to support similar programs dealing with Jewish Israelis and Palestinian citizens of Israel. “Essentially, USAID was faced with the choice of shutting down the program and losing the funds, or keeping something going,” a congressional aide explains. (NYT, REU, TOI, TOI, YA 9/14; HA, MNA, TOI 9/15)