Sunday, November 16, 2014

In the Gaza Strip, Israel Defense Forces (IDF) troops stationed nr. the border open fire on an unarmed 10-year-old Palestinian boy, critically injuring him. Later, the IDF arrests 3 Palestinians who cross the border fence into Israel nr. the Kerem Shalom crossing. In the West Bank, Palestinians gather nr. ‘Askar refugee camp (r.c.) to throw stones at Israeli military vehicles, sparking clashes with the IDF that leave 1 Palestinian injured. IDF troops deliver demolition orders to 5 Palestinian families n. of Qalqilya and temporarily seal all entrances to ‘Azun village e. of Qalqilya; patrol nr. Bethlehem and Hebron. Late in the evening, the IDF conducts arrest raids and house searches in Bil‘in, detaining mayor Basil Mansur, sparking clashes with stone-throwing local residents; conducts arrest raids nr. Hebron and Tulkarm. In East Jerusalem, 10s of Palestinian women refuse to submit their ID cards to Israeli security officers outside Haram al-Sharif, defying a new Israeli access restriction; Israeli security forces beat several of the women with rifle butts to disperse them. Meanwhile, Israeli security forces escort 30 right-wing Jewish activists into Haram al-Sharif. Separately, IDF troops conduct arrest raids and house searches in 3 other areas of East Jerusalem. At an Israeli cabinet meeting, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu reiterates his pledge to maintain the status quo at Haram al-Sharif, meaning that he intends to respect Jordan’s custody of the area. In West Jerusalem, a Palestinian stabs a Jewish Israeli with a screwdriver, injuring him; Israeli police set up roadblocks around the area in effort to capture the assailant, but he escapes. Late at night, a Palestinian bus driver is found hanged in his bus in West Jerusalem. Israeli authorities allege suicide, but the man’s family believes that Israeli settlers killed him in retaliation for the earlier stabbing. Clashes between Palestinians and Israeli security forces break out in al-Tur, East Jerusalem, in response to the bus driver’s death. (HA, MNA, TOI, WAFA 11/16; AFP, IMEMC, JP, MNA 11/17; PCHR 11/20)

U.S. Secy. of State John Kerry calls Palestinian Authority (PA) Pres. Mahmoud Abbas and tells him the U.S. will veto any UN Security Council (UNSC) res. on ending the Israeli occupation within 2 years. Abbas has been circulating such a res. since his speech at the UN General Assembly (UNGA) on 9/26/ 2014. (AP 11/18)

Israeli justice minister Tzipi Livni postpones until 11/23 a debate in her comm. over a new “nation-state” bill, which would enshrine Israel’s status as the national homeland of the Jewish people in the Basic Laws. Netanyahu says that he may sidestep the comm. debate and introduce the bill in the Israeli cabinet. (JTA, REU 11/16)