Saturday, March 23, 2013

In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 1 village nr. Ramallah at night; conducts house searches and arrest raids in 2 villages each nr. Hebron and Tulkarm, and in 1 village each nr. Jenin, Ramallah, and Salfit at night. Off the coast of the Gaza Strip, Israeli naval vessels open fire on Palestinian fishermen, enforcing the new 3 naut. mile fishing limit imposed by Israel. (MNA 3/23; PCHR 3/28)

U.S. Pres. Barack Obama flies back to Washington, leaving Secy. of State John Kerry in the region for further talks aimed at reviving peace talks with PA Pres. Mahmud Abbas in Amman and also PM Benjamin Netanyahu. (MNA 3/23; HA, YA 3/24)

Turkish PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan says that stronger relations with Israel will aid the Israeli-Palestinian peace process and help speed the fall of Syrian pres. Bashar al-Asad. PM Benjamin Netanyahu also cites the Syrian crisis as a reason for his decision to improve relations with Ankara. (HA 3/23)