Friday, March 29, 2024

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers set fire to vending stalls on Route 90 near Ein al-Beida. Israeli forces close the entrance to Deir Istiya and block a road between Burqa and Sebastia. Israeli forces also arrest 25 Palestinians during raids in and around Hebron, Nablus, Tulkarm, Qalqilya, and Jerusalem. In East Jerusalem, Christians mark Good Friday while thousands of Christians from the West Bank are prevented from entering the city. Around 125,000 worshippers attend Friday prayers at the Haram al-Sharif compound. In Gaza, Israeli forces bomb Gaza City, Khan Yunis, Rafah, Maghazi, Jabalia refugee camp, and Nuseirat refugee camp, killing at least 71 people, including 17 people at a police station in Gaza City. Israeli forces continue to raid and besiege al-Shifa Hospital. An Israeli soldier is killed in combat. In Lebanon, Israeli forces assassinate Hezbollah member Ali Abed Akhsan Naim in an airstrike on Bazouriyeh. Israeli forces also bomb Ayta ash Shab and Meiss Ej Jabal. Hezbollah forces fire missiles at Israeli military positions in Avivim, Metula, and al-Malikiyya. In Jordan, protesters demonstrate outside of the Israeli embassy in Amman for the sixth day in a row. In Syria, Israeli forces bomb Aleppo, killing 52 people. A Syrian colonel is assassinated when his booby-trapped car explodes in Damascus. The colonel reportedly had close links to Hezbollah. (AJ, AJ, AJ, AJ, AP, AP, AP, HA, HA, HA, HA, NYT, NYT, REU, REU, REU, REU, UNOCHA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 3/29; AJ, HA 3/30; UNOCHA 4/3)

More than 32,623 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces in Gaza, including at least 13,400 children and 8,900 women, and around 75,092 have been injured since 10/7/2023. At least 7,000 people are missing in rubble, including 1,700 children. 444 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces and settlers in the West Bank and East Jerusalem since 10/7/2023, including 111 children. More than 4,700 people have been injured. Israel reports that 1,139 Israelis and foreign nationals have been killed and 5,400 have been injured in Israel since 10/7/2023, including Israeli soldiers. In addition, 253 Israeli soldiers have been killed and 1,520 injured in Gaza since the ground invasion began on 10/27/2023. Over 1.93 million Palestinians, nearly 85% of the population of Gaza, have been displaced since 10/7/2023. There has been a complete electricity blackout in Gaza since 10/12/2023 due to the Israeli blockade. At least 70,000 housing units have been destroyed and 290,000 have been damaged in Israeli airstrikes since 10/7/2023, constituting over 60% of all housing units. 135 trucks carrying aid enter Gaza. U.S. and UK forces airdrop aid over northern Gaza. (AJ, HA, UNOCHA, UNOCHA, WAFA 3/29; UNOCHA 4/3)

Forensic Architecture says Israel is committing deliberate ecocide in Gaza, adding to the famine. The organization finds that Israel has uprooted most of the orchards in Gaza and systematically targeted agricultural farmlands since 10/7/2023. (FA, GDN 3/29)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas speaks with Bulgarian president Rumen Radev in a phone call, discussing the situation in Palestine. (WAFA 3/29)

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu says Israel will return to ceasefire negotiations. Defense Minister Yoav Gallant reportedly pitched to U.S. officials during his visit to Washington D.C. earlier this week that Arab forces are brought to Gaza to defend aid convoys and the jetty the U.S. is planning to build. (AJ, AP, AX, HA, HA, REU 3/29; HA 4/1)

The Washington Post reports that the U.S. has approved the transfer of 1,800 MK84 2,000-pound bombs, 500 MK82 500-pound bombs, and F35-A fighter jets worth $2.5 billion to Israel. The PA foreign ministry issues a statement saying “[d]emanding [Israeli prime minister Benjamin] Netanyahu to stop killing civilians and supplying him with weapons is an unprecedented principled and moral contradiction.” (HA, REU, WP 3/29; AJ, AJ, HA 3/30; AJ 3/31)

The Times of Israel reports that the U.S. has informed the Israeli Finance Ministry that U.S. sanctions on Israeli settlers do not have to be enforced by Israeli banks. The clarification reportedly comes after Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich said he would retaliate against the sanctions by further impeding the Palestinian economy. (HA, TOI 3/29)

The Harvard University law school’s student government calls on the university to “divest completely from weapons manufacturers, firms, academic programs, corporations, and all other institutions that aid the ongoing illegal occupation of Palestine and the genocide of Palestinians.” (AJ 3/31)