Monday, February 20, 2023

In the West Bank, 1 Palestinian minor succumbed to injuries sustained by Israeli forces during a raid in Balata refugee camp on 2/8. Israeli forces raided ad-Doha, leading to tear-gas related injuries. Israeli forces also demolished 2 structures in al-Buwayb. Elsewhere, Israeli forces raided Nablus to take measurements for punitive demolition of 2 homes belonging to families of 2 Palestinians accused of killing an Israeli soldier in October 2022. 1 Palestinian was injured by live ammunition and 20 others by tear gas while protesting the incursion. 11 Palestinians were arrested during late-night raids in Bil’in, Hizma, al-Ram, al-Khader, Jaba’, and Deir Sharaf. In East Jerusalem, Israeli settlers toured the Haram al-Sharif compound. Israeli forces raided Shu’fat refugee camp, causing tear-gas related injuries. Israeli forces issued a demolition notice for 1 Palestinian home in Kafr ‘Aqab. 2 Palestinians were arrested during a late-night raid in Isawiya. In Gaza, Israeli forces fired tear gas at Palestinian farmers near Beit Lahiya, injuring 1. (HA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 2/20; AJ, MDW, MEE 2/21; PCHR 2/23; UNOCHA 3/4)

Axios reported that PLO secretary-general Hussein al-Sheikh and Israeli national security advisor Tzachi Hanegbi have been in secret talks discussing day-to-day issues and efforts to de-escalate the violence in the West Bank. According to Axios the talks started shortly after prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu was sworn-in after the PA had reached out to Netanyahu using the U.S. as a mediator. (AX 2/20)

The Israeli parliament passed the first of three votes to overhaul the judicial branch of government. The bill passed 63-47. Thousands of Israeli protesters gathered outside of the Knesset during the vote. (AJ, AP, MEE, REU 2/20; AP, F24, HA, HA 2/21; IN 2/22)

Israel prevented Ana Miranda, a Spanish member of the European parliament, from entering the West Bank and deported her to Spain after she arrived at Ben Gurion Airport. (WAFA 2/21; MEMO 2/22)

The UN Security Council issued a presidential statement expressing “deep concern and dismay” over Israel’s 2/12 announcement to legalize settlement outposts and expand settlements by more than 10,000 housing units. The U.S. supported the statement which was made in lieu of a vote on a draft resolution calling on Israel to halt settlement activity. It was reported on 2/19 that the U.S. had convinced the UAE and the PA to drop the binding resolution, which the U.S. said it would veto, and instead present the statement. PA UN ambassador Riyad Mansour said that the PA was very happy with the statement. Prime Minister Netanyahu’s office released a statement saying that the UNSC “statement should never have been made and the United States should never have joined it.” (ABC, AJ, AP, F24, HA, MEE, REU, TOI, UN, WAFA 2/20; ALM 2/21)