Friday, January 15, 2021

In the West Bank, Israeli forces violently dispersed a protest in al-Mughayyir, injuring 1 Palestinian with rubber-coated bullets and 1 Palestinian with tear gas canister shrapnel; others suffered tear-gas related injuries. Israeli forces also shot and injured 1 Palestinian man using live ammunition at a checkpoint near Qusra. Elsewhere, Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinian protesters in al-Twana and Kafr Qaddum; 5 were injured by rubber-coated bullets in Kafr Qaddum and tear-gas related injuries were reported during both protests. Israeli forces also sealed off al-Twana. 2 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Tulkarm. In East Jerusalem, 2 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Issawiyya and al-Tur. In Israel, Palestinian citizens of Israel protested in Umm al-Fahm against the Israeli police’s inaction in dealing with violence in their community. (HA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 1/15; PCHR 1/21)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas signed a presidential decree setting dates for Palestinian elections. The elections for the Palestinian Legislative Council are scheduled to be held on 5/22 and presidential elections on 7/31. The decree was signed after weeks of meetings between chairman of the Palestinian Central Election Committee Hanna Nasser and Hamas and Fatah leadership. It remains unclear how the elections will be carried out given the Israeli-controlled physical barriers between Gaza, East Jerusalem, and the West Bank. Elections for the PLO National Council are scheduled for 8/31. Hamas welcomed the presidential decree. (AJ, HA, HILL, NYT, WAFA 1/15; AP, GDN, HA, HA, PCHR, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WSJ 1/16; AJ, SG, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 1/17; WAFA, WAFA 1/19)

An Israeli court froze the bidding process for an Israeli settlement in East Jerusalem after a petition by Palestinian residents and Ir Amim. The residents and human rights organization complained that 40% of the planned housing would be for Israeli citizens only, forbidding Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem from buying the property. At the same time, the Israeli ministry of housing and the Israel land authority opened the bidding process for the construction of 1,257 new settler units in the Givat Hamatos settlement in East Jerusalem. (HA, PCN 1/15; TOI 1/19 MEE 1/20)