Saturday, July 28, 2012

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney arrives in Israel on the 2d stage of his international tour (see 7/26), which he hopes will increase support for him among evangelical Christian voters who are wary of his Mormon faith and among Democratic Jewish voters disaffected by Pres. Obama. He pledges that he will ‘‘stand as one’’ with Israel. (NYT, WP, WT 7/28; NYT 7/30)

Unidentified Palestinians fire 2 Qassam rockets fr. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or injuries. Israeli naval vessels fire on Palestinian fishing boats off the n. Gaza coast, forcing them to return to shore. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts early morning patrols in Jericho, nearby ‘Ayn al-Sultan r.c., and 1 village nr. Ramallah; patrols in al-Nabi Salih in the afternoon, firing rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas, and stun grenades at stone-throwing youths who confront them (causing no serious injuries) and arresting 1 Palestinian teenager; and patrols in 1 village nr. Jericho in the evening. Late at night, 14 Palestinians without Israeli work permits drive towards the al-Za‘im checkpoint e. of Jerusalem, believing the checkpoint would be unmanned and they would be able to sneak into Israel to find work; when they discover that Israeli border police are at the crossing, they attempt to turn their car around to flee; the Israeli border police open fire on the vehicle, killing 1 Palestinian, wounding 3, and arresting the rest. (YA 7/28; PCHR 8/2; OCHA 8/3)