Thursday, April 11, 2019

In the West Bank, the entrance to ‘Azun east of Qalqilya was blocked by Israeli forced for the 15th day in a row. Israeli forces also sealed the entrance to al-‘Arub refugee camp north of Hebron and al-Fawar refugee camp south of Hebron. Separately, Israeli forces conducted raids in Sair, Bayt Umar, and Sabastiyya. During the raid in Sabastiyya, several Palestinians suffered from tear gas inhalation after clashes with Israeli forces. During late-night raids in and around Sair and Jenin, Israel forces arrest 7 Palestinians and injure 2 others. In East Jerusalem, the Israeli minister of agriculture Uri Ariel toured Haram al-Sharif along with a group of Israeli settlers and security forces. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces fired toward Palestinian fishermen 3 nautical miles from the shore of al-Sudaniyya; no injuries were reported. 2 Palestinians were arrested by Israeli forces near the Gaza fence. (MNA, MNA, MNA, MNA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 4/11; MNA, MNA, WAFA 4/12)

It was announced that the Saudi Arabian government, through the Saudi Fund for Development, donated $23 million to UNRWA projects across Syria, Jordan, Gaza, Lebanon, and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, to maintain school and health centers. (WAFA, UNRWA 4/11)

U.S. senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR) introduced to the Senate a resolution (S. Res. 171) seeking to restore bilateral assistance to the West Bank and Gaza after the Trump administration slashed all aid to Palestine in 2018. The bill was co-sponsored by Chris Coons (D-DE), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA). (Congress 4/11; HA, WAFA 4/18)