Sunday, March 1, 2015

In Gaza, Israeli troops arrest a Palestinian at the Erez border crossing. Meanwhile, thousands of Palestinians gather in Gaza City and Khan Yunis to protest the Egyptian court’s 2/28 designation of Hamas as a terrorist organization. In the West Bank, IDF troops clash with stone-throwing residents in Dahaysha r.c. nr. Bethlehem during a raid; 2 Palestinians are injured with live ammunition and 2 are arrested. The IDF conducts a house search nr. Ramallah, arresting 1 Palestinian; patrols in 2 villages and al-‘Arub r.c. nr. Hebron, and 2 villages nr. Ramallah, as well as ‘Ayn al-Sultan r.c. and Fasayil r.c. nr. Jericho. Israeli troops detain 2 Palestinian shepherds and 2 international activists nr. Hebron. The IDF conducts a large-scale drill nr. Hebron, mobilizing around 13,000 reserves to prepare for a possible eruption of unrest in the West Bank. In East Jerusalem, Israeli authorities order a Palestinian family to evacuate their home in Shaykh Jarrah, pursuant to legal proceedings that began in 2011. Israeli forces conduct house searches and raids nr. the Old City, arresting 1 Palestinian. (MNA, WAFA, YA 3/1; AFP, MNA, WAFA 3/2; PCHR 3/5)

Similar to his 2/27 call, U.S. Secy. of State Kerry phones PA Pres. Abbas and asks him to refrain from taking “harsh” decisions ahead of the Israeli elections on 3/17. (JP, TOI 3/1; MNA 3/7)

A delegation representing Islamic Jihad arrives in Cairo for negotiations with Egyptian officials on the Rafah border crossing. They will negotiate until 3/7. Meanwhile, Hamas officials lobby Saudi leadership to apply pressure on the Egyptian govt. to reverse the 2/28 designation of the group as a terrorist organization. (HA 3/4)

The annual American Israel Public Affairs Comm. (AIPAC) conference begins today, with a record-breaking 16,000 in attendance. The organization’s lobbyists will be on Capitol Hill on 3/3 to lobby for the passage of the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act and the Nuclear Weapon Free Iran Act. (HA, TOI 3/1, 3/2)