Sunday, May 9, 2021

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers set fire to a field planted with wheat crops near al-Mughayyir, causing extensive damage. Israel deployed more forces to the West Bank, increasing the number of military forces by 50%. Israeli forces seized 1 excavator east of Yatta. 1 Palestinian was arrested at the Qalandia checkpoint. In East Jerusalem, Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinian protesters by the Damascus Gate plaza, injuring 3. Israeli forces also violently dispersed Palestinian protesters at the Hebrew University near Issawiyya, injuring 2 and arresting 3; 3 Israeli police officers were reportedly lightly injured. Earlier, Israeli settlers attacked 1 Palestinian in the area, leading to several other Palestinians coming to his defense. Elsewhere, Israeli forces closed off Shaykh Jarrah to prevent Palestinians from entering the neighborhood and violently dispersed Palestinians in the area, leading to 19 injuries, including 5 that required treatment at a hospital. 6 Palestinians were arrested during raids in and around the Haram al-Sharif compound, Bayt Hanina, Shu‘fat, and Sur Bahir. In Gaza, Israel said incendiary balloons from Gaza started several fires in Israel. 2 rockets were also reportedly fired from Gaza toward Israel; no damage was reported. Israeli forces subsequently attacked Dayr al-Balah, causing damage. Israeli forces also violently dispersed Palestinian protests against Israeli aggression in East Jerusalem near the Gaza fence east of Khan Yunis, injuring 1 protester with live ammunition and 2 with tear gas. Elsewhere, Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinian protesters east of al-Bureij refugee camp; no injuries were reported. Off the coast of Gaza, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen within 3 nautical miles west of Bayt Lahiya; no injuries were reported. In Israel, Palestinian citizens of Israel protested Israel’s aggression against Palestinians in East Jerusalem in Haifa and Nazareth. (HA, HA, HA, HA, HA, MEMO, WAFA, WAFA 5/9; AP, HA, HA 5/10; PCHR 5/11)

The Israeli high court of justice postponed the eviction hearing for the Palestinian families in Shaykh Jarrah under the most immediate threat of eviction. The hearing, which has already been postponed a number of times, was scheduled for 5/10. The postponement was made after a request by the Israeli attorney general Avichai Mendelblit, whom the attorneys representing the Palestinian families have requested be part of the proceedings. (GDN, HA, NYT 5/9; HA, REU 5/10)

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu said, “[w]e firmly reject pressure not to build in Jerusalem. And sadly, these pressures have been increasing recently. I say to our closest friends: Jerusalem is the capital of Israel. Just as every nation builds its capital and builds in its capital, we also reserve the right to build Jerusalem and build in Jerusalem. This is what we have done, and this is what we will continue to do.” His comments came after days of international condemnation of Israeli efforts to evict Palestinians in East Jerusalem, replacing them with Israeli settlers. (AJ, BBC, HA 5/9)

Jordan summoned the Israeli envoy to the country to express its condemnation over Israeli behavior in East Jerusalem in recent days. Jordan’s king Abdullah II also called PA president Mahmoud Abbas to express his support. Jordan called the Israeli violence against Palestinians in East Jerusalem “barbaric.” Protests outside the Israeli embassy in Amman called for Jordan to end its peace treaty with Israel. President Abbas also discussed the situation with Tunisian president Kais Saied. (HA, REU, WAFA, WAFA 5/9)

U.S. national security advisor Jake Sullivan spoke to Israeli national security advisor Meir Ben-Shabbat, expressing concern over the recent violence in East Jerusalem and the Israeli eviction threat over the Palestinian families in Shaykh Jarrah. According to Axios, Security Advisor Ben-Shabbat told U.S. security advisor Sullivan that the U.S. and the international community should stay out of Israel’s actions in East Jerusalem. The spokesperson for UN secretary-general António Guterres urged Israel to “exercise maximum restraint and respect the right to freedom of peaceful assembly” and to stop demolitions and evictions in East Jerusalem. Pope Francis also called on the parties to stop the violence. Pakistan and Switzerland were also among the countries to criticize Israel’s aggression. (AX, HA, MEMO, WAFA, WAFA 5/9; AX, HA, MEE, REU, WAFA 5/10)

Tunisia led a group of 9 nations requesting an emergency meeting at the UN security council for the violence in Jerusalem. (WAFA 5/9)