Monday, April 23, 2012

Unidentified Palestinians fire 2 Qassam rockets fr. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or injuries. IDF troops make a brief incursion into n. Gaza to level land and clear lines of sight along the border fence n. of Bayt Hanun, occasionally firing on the surrounding area to keep Palestinians away (no injuries reported). In the West Bank, the IDF demolishes 2 Palestinian water tanks serving Palestinian agricultural land in area C; bulldozes 1 d. of agricultural land nr. Qalandia (n. of Jerusalem) that was previously confiscated for construction of the separation wall; conducts morning patrols in Qalqilya and 1 nearby village, 2 villages each nr. Ramallah and Tulkarm, and 1 nr. Jericho; afternoon patrols in 2 villages nr. Ramallah and 1 nr. Jenin; late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Hebron; and late-night patrols in Bayt Umar, Birzeit, Jericho and 1 nearby village, Tulkarm, and 2 villages nr. Hebron and Ramallah (firing tear gas and stun grenades at stone-throwing Palestinian youths who confront them). Jewish settlers fr. Yitzhar settlement nr. Nablus, escorted by IDF troops, throw stones at a Palestinian elementary school in nearby Ourif village; when local Palestinians throw stones back at the settlers, IDF soldiers fire tear gas at them to force them to disperse, causing no serious injuries. (JP, YA 4/23; PCHR 4/26; OCHA 4/27)

A Turkish official says that Turkey has blocked NATO from inviting Israel to participate in a NATO summit planned for Chicago in 5/2012 as part of a NATO outreach program to boost ties with nonmember states. NATO officials deny that the issue was ever discussed. Israel does not comment. (WP 4/24)