Wednesday, February 3, 2021

In the West Bank, Israeli forces demolished 15 tents, seized 3 vehicles, and arrested 1 Palestinian activist trying to prevent the forces from demolishing and seizing Palestinian property in Khirbat Humsa; Israeli forces demolished 25 structures in Khirbet Humsa on 2/1. The EU said it would send representatives to Khirbet Humsa on 2/4 to witness the destruction; more than 70 Palestinians were displaced during the mass demolitions on 2/1 and 2/3. Israeli forces also conducted military drills in the Masafer Yatta area, damaging crops and agricultural structures for the 2d day in a row. Elsewhere, Israeli forces demolished 1 house under construction in Anata and 11 vending stalls near Jenin. Israeli forces also delivered 1 demolition notice for a house in al-Khadir. 25 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and around Tuqu‘, al-Fawar refugee camp, Bayt Umar, Hizma, Salfit, Nablus, Sabastiyya, Tulkarm, and Qabatiya. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire at Palestinian farmers east of al-Shuka and arrested 1 Palestinian in the vicinity of the Gaza fence; no injuries were reported. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen 3 nautical miles west of al-Sudaniyya; no injuries were reported. (REU, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 2/3; AP, HA, HA, NBC, PCHR, WAFA, WAFA 2/4; OCHA 2/5)

The Israeli high court of justice approved the punitive demolition of the family home of 1 Palestinian accused of killing an Israeli settler on 12/20/2020. The punitive demolition will displace 7 people: the accused Palestinian, his wife, 3 children, and 2 parents. (HA 2/3)

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu appointed retired police major general Aharon Franco to lead efforts to combat violence in Palestinian communities in Israel and said he had allocated $30 million for the efforts. Franco has made degrading comments about Muslims in Israel in the past. The Israeli plan to combat violence in the Palestinian communities includes confiscating weapons and the construction of police and fire stations in several cities and towns. Ayman Odeh of Hadash (The Democratic Front for Peace and Equality) called the plan inadequate and an “election ploy.” (HA 2/4)

3 of the 4 parties in the Joint Arab List announced they will remain on the same slate for the March elections as the more conservative Ra’am (United Arab List) broke with the alliance. The 3 remaining parties in the Joint Arab List are Hadash, Ta’al (Arab Movement for Renewal), and Balad (National Democratic Alliance). Hadash leader Ayman Odeh will continue to lead the slate. The leader of Ra’am Mansour Abbas said his party had not decided on who it would support amidst rumors that the party will support Benjamin Netanyahu. (HA 2/3; AJ, AP 2/4; MEMO 2/5)

Israeli forces conducted air strikes in Syria near Quneitra, causing damage but no injuries. Israeli forces also flew a drone over Lebanon, which evaded an anti-aircraft missile fired at it. Hezbollah said it shot down an Israeli drone on 2/1. (AP, HA, HA 2/3; AJ, JP, JP 2/4)