Quarterly Updates for (16 Aug 2017 — 15 Nov 2017)

Regional events figure heavily in developments this quarter as the Saudi Arabian crown prince steps out of the shadows of secret meetings with Israeli and U.S. officials; Lebanese PM Saad Hariri announces his resignation under mysterious circumstances in Riyadh; and Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman summons Palestinian Authority (PA) pres. Mahmoud Abbas to the Saudi capital just 2 days later. These actions come soon after reps. from Hamas and Fatah sign a new reconciliation agreement in Cairo, prompting Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu to threaten to upend U.S. pres. Donald Trump’s peace initiative. Netanyahu and his right-wing coalition continue to quarrel internally over settlement growth and annexation. They also continue their crackdown on the Israeli opposition, Palestinian citizens of Israel, and supporters of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. Earlier in the quarter, Trump asks the Palestinians to delay unilateral moves at international forums while he puts together a plan for restarting Palestinian-Israeli peace negotiations.