Sunday, November 11, 2012

The IDF carries out air strikes on a number of targets in the Gaza Strip, killing 1 armed Palestinian and wounding a number of civilians. Palestinian groups fire around 100 rockets and mortars into Israel, causing 3 injuries and structural damage. Israeli PM Netanyahu tells the weekly cabinet meeting that the army is prepared to intensify its attacks; a number of ministers urge an escalation in military operations (such as assassinations), as well as other measures, like cutting off electricity. A source in Netanyahu’s office says that the PM is preparing international public opinion for a military operation in Gaza. (AP, HA 11/11; JP 11/12; PCHR 11/14)

U.S. pres. Barack Obama tells PA pres. Abbas that his administration opposes a Palestinian bid for non-state membership of the UN. Abbas tells a rally in Ramallah marking the anniversary of Yasir Arafat’s death that the PA is under huge pressure to stop the UN initiative, but that they would continue regardless, as it is intended to save the two-state solution. (AFP, JP 11/11)

PA pres. Abbas announces that Russia will join an international investigation into whether Yasir Arafat was murdered. French and Swiss experts will exhume the late Palestinian leader’s body later in the month, after an Al Jazeera report in July suggested he was murdered with polonium. (REU 11/11)

In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 1 village nr. Ramallah and 1 village nr. Bethlehem (firing rubber bullets and tear gas at children going to school) in the morning; patrols in 2 villages nr. Tulkarm and 1 village nr. Ramallah at night; conducts house searches and arrest raids in Hebron and 1 village nr. Ramallah. Israeli police deliver notices to 13 Israeli activists, banning them from taking part in weekly demonstrations in West Bank villages. (972mag 11/11; PCHR 11/14)

Israeli forces fire into Syria in what the military calls a warning, after stray munitions from fighting between Syrian troops and rebels hit the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights. The incident, described by Israel Radio as the 1st direct engagement of the Syrian military on the Golan since the countries’ 1973 war, highlights international fears that Syria’s civil war could ignite wider regional conflict. An Israeli security source said the military fired in the direction of a Syrian army mortar crew that had launched a shell that overshot the Golan disengagement fence on Sunday, exploding near a Jewish settlement without causing casualties. (REU 11/11)