Wednesday, May 31, 2023

In the West Bank, Israeli settlers blocked a road south of Jenin and threw stones at Palestinian vehicles, causing damage. Israeli settlers also vandalized heavy machinery in Madama. Elsewhere, Israeli settlers raided Burqa, throwing stones at Palestinian homes. Israeli forces seized a vehicle, an electric transformer, and a forklift used by Aqraba municipal workers to rehabilitate and clean a water spring. In East Jerusalem, Israeli settlers toured the Haram al-Sharif compound. Israeli municipal workers demolished commercial structures in Wadi Qaddum. (WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA, WAFA 5/31; PCHR 6/1; UNOCHA 6/18)

In Lebanon, 5 members of the PFLP-GC were killed and 10 others injured in an explosion in Qusaya. The PFLP-GC said that an Israeli airstrike had killed the 5 members while Israel denied having carried out the attack. (AJ, ALM, AP, HA, MEE, REU 5/31; BBC, HA 6/1)

Palestinian citizens of Israel began a 3-day sit-in protest outside of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office calling on the Israeli police to ensure the safety of Palestinian citizens as the murder rate in Palestinian towns and cities continued to rise. (MEE 5/31) 

An Israeli parole committee in Ramle prison said it could not determine if Palestinian prisoner Walid Daqqa was eligible for parole and decided to refer the question to a different committee. The Palestinian Prisoner’s Society called the decision tantamount to killing him given Daqqa’s bone marrow cancer. (WAFA 5/31; MDW 6/4)

4 Israeli soldiers were arrested for assaulting 1 Palestinian man after arresting him in Deir Abu Mash‘al on 5/27. (HA 5/31)

PA prime minister Mohammed Shtayyeh and Egyptian prime minister Moustafa Madbouly signed a number of agreements to further cooperation between the 2 countries in Cairo. (WAFA, WAFA 5/31)

U.S. assistant secretary of state for near eastern affairs Barbara Leaf told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s Middle East subcommittee that there is “a lot of misreporting and hyperventilation in the press” regarding potential normalization between Israel and Saudi Arabia. Leaf also said that it “is an end goal” for the U.S. to facilitate normalization. (HA, HA 5/31; MEE 6/1)