Tuesday, August 20, 2013

In the Gaza Strip, IDF troops open fire on Palestinian children close to the border fence nr. Jabaliya r.c., wounding 2. The IDF also opens fire on Palestinian fishermen working nr. Gaza City, injuring none but causing damage to their boats. In the West Bank, the IDF shoots and kills 1 Palestinian and wounds 2 others in Jenin r.c. after opening fire in clashes sparked by an arrest raid. The IDF conducts house searches and arrest raids in 1 village nr. Bethlehem at night; patrols in 2 villages nr. Jenin, 1 village nr. Nablus, and in Dahaysha r.c. nr. Bethlehem. During clashes in Dahaysha, the IDF wounds 1 Palestinian with a rubber-coated metal bullet. IDF troops also demolish 15 structures of Bedouin residents in the n. Jordan Valley, including residential sheds and animal barns. (MNA, REU, WAFA 8/20; PCHR 8/22)

Israeli and Palestinian negotiating teams meet in Jerusalem to continue discussions taking place following the resumption of official peace talks. U.S. envoy to the peace process Martin Indyk joins the teams, following the previous session that lacked a U.S. presence. The Israeli delegation is headed by Tzipi Livni and Yitzhak Molcho, while the Palestinian side is led by Saeb Erakat and Mohammed Shtayyeh. Livni tells Israeli media that both sides have agreed on not sharing details of their discussions to build trust. (AFP, AP, HA 8/20)

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Abbas Araqchi hints that Tehran’s FM Mohammad Javad Zarif is poised to take over as negotiator in talks over the country’s nuclear program. Previous negotiator Saeed Jalili was one of the more conservative candidates defeated in the June 14 presidential election. (AP, NYT 8/20)

Turkish PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan accuses Israel of being involved in the military coup that removed Pres. Morsi in Egypt, though offers only a reference to a meeting between French intellectual Bernard-Henri Levy and Tzipi Livni as evidence of his claim. The Egyptian cabinet rejects the comments as baseless, and Erdogan’s remarks are also condemned by White House spokesperson Josh Earnest as “offensive.” (AP, REU 8/20)