Saturday, February 18, 2012

During the day, unidentified Palestinians fire 1 manufactured Grad rocket fr. Gaza into Israel (causing no damage or injuries) and 1 homemade Qassam rocket (which lands inside Gaza, damaging a Palestinian home, but causing no reported injuries). Late at night Israeli warplanes make 2 air strikes targeting 1 Palestinian home in Gaza City (the shell does not explode, but injures 3 Palestinians) and a Hamas training site (causing no injuries, but resulting in extensive damage to an adjacent school). In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 2 villages nr. Ramallah, 1 nr. Jenin (summoning 1 Palestinians for questioning by Israeli intelligence), and 1 nr. Qalqilya in the morning; patrols in 2 villages nr. Jenin in the afternoon; patrols in Jericho late at night; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Ramallah. (JP, YA 2/18; PCHR 2/23; OCHA 2/24)

A meeting of all Palestinian factions set for today at the request of Palestinian Authority (PA) pres. and Fatah head Mahmud Abbas and Hamas leader Khalid Mishal to endorse several compromises that would facilitate implementation of the 5/2011 Fatah-Hamas unity deal and appointment of a transitional government to take Palestinians toward new elections does not take place because of divisions within Hamas. Senior Hamas members in Gaza are reportedly angry at Mishal and the external leadership for failing to consult adequately with the Gaza leadership over the idea of Abbas serving as both PM and president in the transitional government. (NYT 3/8) (see Quarterly Update in JPS 164 for details)