Friday, February 5, 2021

In the West Bank, 1 Israeli settler shot 1 Palestinian man near Ras Karkar; according to Israeli authorities, the Palestinian man was unarmed and was shot at a settlement outpost near Ras Karkar; Israeli forces subsequently raided the deceased Palestinian’s house. Israeli settlers also raided Luban al-Sharqiyya, leading to confrontations between Palestinians and the settlers’ military escort; tear-gas related injuries were reported. Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinian protesters in Kafr Malik, injuring 1 with live ammunition. Israeli forces also violently dispersed a protest in Bayt Dajan, causing tear-gas related injuries. Elsewhere, Israeli forces violently dispersed the weekly anti-settlement protest in Kafr Qaddum, injuring 5 Palestinians with rubber-coated bullets. Israeli forces also opened fire on Palestinians near Silwad, injuring 1 with live ammunition. 1 Palestinian was arrested during a late-night raid near Nablus. In Gaza, Israeli forces opened fire on agricultural lands east of Abasan and al-Showka; no injuries were reported. (AJ, AP, HA, JP, MEE, TOI, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 2/5; HA 2/11; PCHR 2/11)

The ICC ruled that it has territorial jurisdiction to persecute alleged war crimes committed in the occupied Palestinian territories, as it found Palestine to be “a State Party to the [Rome] Statute.” The ICC defined the occupied Palestinian territories as the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Gaza. Israel has argued that the ICC does not have jurisdiction to prosecute matters pertaining to Israel and Palestine because Israel is not party to the Rome Statute and because Palestine is not a state. The latter 2 of the 3 ICC judges ultimately disagreed with erasing the final hurdle to start a formal investigation, 6 years after the ICC chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda started her preliminary investigation into alleged war crimes made by Israel and Hamas. Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the ruling “pure anti-Semitism” and said, “[w]e will fight this perversion of justice with all our might.” The PA prime minister Mohammed Shtayyeh praised the decision. The U.S. State Department’s spokesperson said the U.S. has “serious concern about the ICC’s attempts to exercise its jurisdiction over Israeli personnel. We have always taken the position that the court’s jurisdiction should be reserved for countries that consent to it or that are referred by the UN Security Council.” Haaretz reported that Israel has started briefing military personnel on potential implications for them if the proceedings move to a trial. (AJ, AX, DOS, HA, ICC, NYT, WAFA, WAFA 2/5; AJ, AP, HA, HA, PCHR, REU, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 2/6; AX, HA, HA, HA, MDW, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 2/7; WAFA 2/8)

An UNRWA spokesperson said that the UAE’s contributions to the agency dropped from $51.8 million in 2018 and in 2019 to $1 million in 2020. (AJ, HA 2/6)

The U.S. Biden administration notified Congress that it will remove the Houthi group from the list of foreign terrorist organizations. The Houthis were declared a terrorist organization by the Trump administration shortly before the Trump presidency ended. (REU 2/5; AJ 2/6; AJ 2/8)