Monday, February 6, 2017

Unidentified fighters launch a rocket from Gaza into Israel, which lands in an open area nr. Ashqelon, causing no damage or injuries. The IDF then launches 3 rounds of air strikes on open areas and Hamas posts nr. Bayt Lahiya, Gaza City, and Khan Yunis, injuring 3 Palestinians and causing extensive damage (1 chicken farm is completely destroyed in Gaza City, killing 1,000 chickens). IDF troops stationed along the border fence also open fire on Hamas posts nr. Bayt Hanun, causing bird hunters and farmers to flee the area. Earlier, Israeli forces conduct a limited incursion to level land along the border fence in s. Gaza. Off Gaza’s coast, Israeli naval forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats nr. Bayt Lahiya, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, Israeli forces deliver stop-work orders to a Palestinian road under construction nr. Tubas. They also confiscate 3 drills. IDF troops arrest 11 Palestinians during late-night raids nr. Hebron, Jenin, Tulkarm, and Ramallah, and patrol during the day nr. Salfit, Qalqilya, and Ramallah. They also detain a Palestinian TV crew covering settlement growth nr. Nablus. Meanwhile, Palestinians living nr. Nablus discover that Israeli settlers have cut down 600 of their almond and olive trees. (HA, JP, MNA, TOI, WAFA 2/6; PCHR 2/9)

The Israeli Knesset passes, 60–52, the so-called regulations bill into law, retroactively authorizing settlements built “in good faith or at the state’s instruction” on privately owned Palestinian land. France, Jordan, Turkey, the EU, the UN, the Palestinians, and the UK all denounce the new law, but the U.S. does not offer a direct comment. Instead, a White House spokesperson says that the Trump admin. needs to “have a chance to fully consult with all parties on the way forward.” (AJ, EI, JP, NYT, TOI 2/6; HA, JP, TOI 2/7)