Wednesday, August 18, 2021

In the West Bank, Israeli forces violently dispersed Palestinians during a raid in Tayasir, injuring 2 with live ammunition, 1 with a rubber-coated bullet, and other suffered tear-gas related injuries. Israeli forces raided a printing company in Hebron, seizing 19 printing machines and closing the company indefinitely. Israeli forces also demolished 1 agricultural structure and 1 water tank near Qiffin and 1 commercial structure in Ya‘bad. 15 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in and around Qalqilya, Deir Abu Mash’al, Tubas, Qusra, and Beit Umar. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 8/18; PCHR 8/19)

PA president Mahmoud Abbas met with the head of Egypt’s general intelligence service Abbas Kamel in Ramallah. The readout from the meeting said that the 2 discussed bilateral relations. However, it is likely that the 2 also discussed the Egyptian mediation efforts to create a long-term ceasefire agreement between Hamas and Israel. Egyptian security officials met with Israeli security officials earlier in the day in Cairo and Israeli prime minister Naftali Bennett and Defense Minister Benny Gantz met with Kamel prior to his visit to Ramallah. Palestinian factions in Gaza said they would resume protests at the Gaza fence on 8/21 if no progress had been made in easing the restrictions imposed on the Gaza blockade after the May assault on Gaza and if Qatari aid continued to be stalled. During their meeting, Kamel invited Prime Minister Bennett to Cairo to meet Egyptian president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. (ALM, AP, HA, HA, WAFA 8/18; ALM, HA, MEMO, MEMO 8/19)

The Israeli high court of justice rejected a petition by the family of Ahmad Erekat, who was killed by Israeli forces on 6/23/2020, to have his remains handed over to his family. According to Adalah, Israel is holding the bodies of 81 people killed by Israeli forces since 2015. (HA, WAFA 8/18; MEE 8/19)

Israeli prime minister Naftali Bennett was invited to meet U.S. president Joe Biden at the White House on 8/26. (AP, AX, MEE, MEMO, REU, REU 8/18; HA, MEMO 8/20)

53 Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives called on U.S. secretary of state Antony Blinken to take a more proactive role in ensuring that humanitarian aid is able to reach Gaza, as Israel continues to keep additional restrictions on the blockade placed during the Israeli assault on Gaza in May. The representatives were led by Mark Pocan (D-WI) and Debbie Dingell (D-MI). (HA, MEE 8/19; ALM, WAFA 8/20)

Japan announced that it would contribute $3.7 million to the UNRWA during a visit by Japanese foreign minister Toshimitsu Motegi in Ramallah. (WAFA 8/18)