Saturday, July 26, 2014

In the Gaza Strip, the IDF continues its assault on the Gaza Strip, killing 151 Palestinians, except during a 12-hour humanitarian cease-fire. There are no Israeli strikes during the pause, but IDF troops continue to destroy tunnels. During the pause, residents of Gaza stock up on supplies and inspect the damage done to property. The armed Palestinian groups fire rockets into Israel both before the 12-hour humanitarian cease-fire and immediately after, causing no serious damage or injuries. The IDF announces that 2 soldiers died of their wounds. In the West Bank, IDF troops clash with Palestinians nr. Hebron, at the funeral for a man killed the previous day in al-‘Arub r.c., causing no serious injuries. IDF troops shoot and wound 6 Palestinians with live ammunition in n. Bethlehem, during clashes nr. Rachel’s Tomb. In Bayt Furik nr. Nablus, IDF troops injure 5 with live ammunition during clashes with residents. The IDF also conducts house searches and arrest raids in al-Bireh in the morning. (AFP, AP, MNA, REU, WAFA 7/26; PCHR 7/27)

In the morning, U.S. Secy. of State Kerry and senior European diplomats, including the FMs of France, Britain, Germany, and Italy, as well as their counterparts from Qatar and Turkey, meet in Paris and call for an extension of the 12-hour humanitarian cease-fire. French FM Fabius, speaking for the group, says that they all “want to obtain, as quickly as possible, a durable, negotiated cease-fire that responds both to Israeli needs in terms of security and to Palestinian needs in terms of the socialeconomic development and access to the territory of Gaza.” (AFP, AP, HA, JP, MNA, REU, WAFA 7/26)

In the evening, the Israeli security cabinet responds to the calls from the international community and decides to unilaterally extend the humanitarian cease-fire for 4 hours, then an additional 24 hours, though IDF troops will continue seeking out and destroying tunnels. Al-Qassam Brigades and other Palestinian groups do not agree to the extension, and fire rockets into Israel, causing no damage or injuries. (AFP, AP, MNA, REU, WAFA 7/26)