Israel and Hamas Agree to Cease-Fire
Israel and Hamas agreed to a cease-fire, mediated by Egypt, which went into effect yesterday after nearly two weeks of violence and over 200 killed. No cease-fire violations have been reported as of this morning (New York Times).
May 21, 2021
Palestinians Strike in Israel, Territories
In a display of solidarity, hundreds of thousands of Palestinians in Gaza, Israel, and the West Bank went on strike yesterday to protest Israel’s military campaign in Gaza, the evictions of families in East Jerusalem, and violence against Palestinian citizens of Israel (New York Times). Violence continued yesterday, with Israeli air strikes across Gaza and rockets fired into Israel, and efforts to broker a cease-fire between Israel and Palestinian militant groups in Gaza are ongoing (CNN).
May 19, 2021
Biden Offers Muted Support for Cease-Fire in Gaza
President Biden for the first time signaled support for a cease-fire between Israel and Palestinian militant groups in Gaza but did not call for an immediate end to the violence. Many Democratic lawmakers have demanded an immediate cease-fire, and international pressure for one is growing (New York Times).
May 18, 2021
Israeli-Palestinian Conflict in Gaza Enters Second Week
The Israeli military continued to strike Gaza today as the worst conflict with Palestinian militant groups there since 2014 entered its second week (New York Times). Nearly two hundred people in Gaza have been killed, according to the territory’s health ministry, while ten people in Israel have been killed (Haaretz). On Saturday, Israeli forces drew condemnation from press-freedom groups for destroying a building that housed the Associated Press, Al Jazeera, and other media outlets (Associated Press). Diplomatic efforts toward a cease-fire have yielded little so far, and the United States continues to block a statement by the UN Security Council, which met yesterday (Associated Press). Meanwhile, China offered to host Israeli-Palestinian peace talks and criticized what it called U.S. “obstruction” (South China Morning Post).
May 17, 2021
Israel Considers Gaza Ground Invasion, UN Security Council to Meet Sunday
Israel’s military continues to carry out air and ground strikes in Gaza in retaliation for rocket attacks by Hamas and other militant groups, and the country is considering mounting a ground invasion. At least 119 Gazans, including 31 children and 19 women, have been killed, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry in Gaza. At least eight people in Israel have been killed, including one child and one woman. The UN Security Council is slated to discuss the situation on Sunday, after the United States objected to meeting today (Associated Press).
May 14, 2021
Biden Dispatches Envoy as Israeli-Palestinian Fighting Continues
The U.S. deputy assistant secretary for Israeli-Palestinian affairs, Hady Amr, will meet with Israeli and Palestinian officials today in an effort to end the fighting in Gaza (Times of Israel). At least eighty-three people in Gaza and seven in Israel have been killed in the recent violence, the worst since 2014 (Haaretz).
May 13, 2021
Death Toll Rises in Worst Israeli-Palestinian Conflict in Years
Dozens of people have been killed, including women and children, in the worst fighting between Israel and Palestinian militant groups in Gaza since 2014 (Associated Press). At least forty-eight Palestinians and six Israelis have been killed and dozens more injured as rocket attacks by Hamas, the group that controls Gaza, and Islamic Jihad are met with Israeli air strikes (Haaretz). The violence has been accompanied by widespread unrest within Israel as Palestinians protest the Gaza killings and other grievances, including police brutality and the pending evictions of Palestinian families in East Jerusalem by Israeli settlers (Washington Post). The Joe Biden administration urged de-escalation, but said it supports Israel’s right to defend itself and denounced the Palestinian groups’ rocket attacks. The UN Security Council is planning to hold a second emergency meeting on the situation today, but it has not issued a statement due to U.S. concerns, according to reports (Wall Street Journal).
May 12, 2021
Israel Retaliates Against Rocket Attacks From Gaza
Weeks of tensions in Jerusalem sharply escalated yesterday as Israel carried out air strikes in Gaza in retaliation for dozens of rocket attacks by Hamas and other armed groups (Haaretz). Twenty-four Palestinians, including nine children, were killed in the Israeli strikes, Gaza health officials said. The Israeli military said fifteen Palestinian militants were killed and that at least two hundred rockets had been fired into Israel (Associated Press). The rocket attacks and air strikes followed violent confrontations at East Jerusalem’s al-Aqsa Mosque, where hundreds of Palestinians and more than twenty Israeli police officers were injured (New York Times). Tensions in Jerusalem have been rising over a pending court decision that could result in the eviction of several Arab families from the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood (Washington Post).
May 11, 2021
Hundreds of Palestinians Injured in East Jerusalem Clashes
Hundreds of Palestinian protesters and nearly two dozen Israeli police officers were wounded in violent clashes near al-Aqsa Mosque in East Jerusalem this morning (Haaretz). Tensions are expected to escalate later today due to a planned march by far-right Israelis marking the anniversary of the 1967 Arab-Israeli war, during which Israel captured East Jerusalem (New York Times).
May 10, 2021
Israeli Troops Kill Two Palestinians Following Attack
Two Palestinians were killed and one was wounded after a reported attack on an Israeli military base in the West Bank. According to Israeli police, the three Palestinians opened fire on the military base’s main gate (Al Jazeera).
May 7, 2021
Yair Lapid Given Mandate to Form Israeli Government
Israeli President Reuven Rivlin gave Yair Lapid, the leader of the centrist Yesh Atid party, twenty-eight days to form a governing coalition. Lapid has said he is prepared to allow Naftali Bennett, who leads the right-wing Yamina party, to serve as prime minister first as part of a unity government (Times of Israel).
May 6, 2021
Israel’s Political Turmoil Continues as Netanyahu Fails to Form Coalition
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu failed to form a government before his mandate to do so expired yesterday, prolonging an unprecedented period of political gridlock and potentially ending his tenure as Israel’s longest-serving leader (Haaretz).
May 5, 2021
Israeli, Palestinians Clash After Suspected Drive-By Shooting
Three Israeli teenagers were wounded, one critically, in a suspected drive-by shooting in the West Bank (Haaretz). A group of Israelis allegedly attacked a Palestinian village as revenge for the earlier incident (Al Jazeera)
May 3, 2021
Abbas Postpones Palestinian Elections
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas postponed parliamentary elections scheduled for next month due to a dispute over voting in Israel-controlled East Jerusalem and tensions within his Fatah party. The delay of the elections sparked protests and is opposed by Hamas (Al Jazeera).
April 30, 2021
Hamas Opposes Delaying Palestinian Elections
Hamas, the militant group that controls Gaza, rejected any delay of Palestinian elections ahead of a meeting with President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah party. Abbas is expected to push for a delay partly because divisions within his party could tip the vote in favor of Hamas (Associated Press).
April 29, 2021
Palestinian Elections Likely to Be Delayed
Palestinian authorities appear likely to postpone elections scheduled for May and July, the first elections in fifteen years, due to a dispute over voting in Israel-occupied East Jerusalem and a rift within Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah party. Israel has not said whether it will allow voting in Jerusalem (Reuters).
April 28, 2021
Human Rights Watch Accuses Israel of Apartheid, Persecution
In a new report, Human Rights Watch said the Israeli government is guilty of the crimes against humanity of apartheid and persecution for its treatment of Palestinians within Israel and in the Palestinian territories. Israel’s foreign ministry rejected the report as “preposterous and false” and accused the group of having anti-Israel bias (Associated Press).
April 27, 2021
Dozens Injured in Far-Right, Anti-Arab Protests in Israel
Dozens of people, including more than one hundred Palestinians, were injured yesterday after violence broke out in Jerusalem following a march organized by a far-right, anti-Arab group. Palestinians and Israeli Arabs have been attacked in recent days after videos purportedly showing Palestinians assaulting Jews were shared on social media (Haaretz).
April 23, 2021
Anti-Netanyahu Bloc Wins Control of Israeli Parliamentary Committee
A coalition opposed to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu won control of the committee that sets the agenda for the Knesset during the transitional period before a government is formed (Haaretz). Netanyahu, who has two weeks to form a government, proposed direct elections for prime minister as a way to break the political impasse following deadlocked parliamentary elections (Haaretz).
April 20, 2021
Israeli Police, Palestinian Protesters Clash
Israeli police and hundreds of Palestinian protesters clashed in Jerusalem yesterday. The police used stun grenades and a water gun to disperse the crowd, according to reports (Associated Press).
April 19, 2021
UN Warns of Rise in Attacks on Palestinian Civilians
UN human rights experts warned that violence by Israeli settlers against Palestinian civilians has increased substantially in 2021. The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) documented 210 violent incidents and one death in the first three months of the year (Reuters).
April 14, 2021
Israel to Reject ICC Authority
The office of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the country will not cooperate with the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) investigation into potential war crimes in the Palestinian territories (Times of Israel). In a response to the ICC due today, Israel will reject allegations against it and assert its ability to self-investigate (Reuters).
April 9, 2021
U.S. Reverses Trump-Era Aid Cuts to Palestinians
The Joe Biden administration announced it will restore $235 million in aid to the Palestinians, a move welcomed by the Palestinian Authority and rebuked by the Israeli government. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the decision reflects U.S. support for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and for the prosperity and security of both sides (Wall Street Journal).
April 8, 2021
Israel’s Netanyahu Invited to Try to Form Government
President Reuven Rivlin granted Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu the opportunity to form a government after last month’s deadlocked vote, Israel’s fourth election in two years, though Rivlin also said no candidate had a real chance of successfully forming a government. Netanyahu, who received the most endorsements from lawmakers, has twenty-eight days to build a coalition (Haaretz). Separately, Israeli troops killed a Palestinian driver and injured his wife at a checkpoint in the West Bank. Local Palestinian officials said that they may raise the incident at the International Criminal Court (Reuters).
April 6, 2021
Trial of Israel’s Netanyahu Resumes as Postelection Talks Begin
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s trial for charges of fraud, bribery, and breach of trust restarted today. The hearing comes as President Reuven Rivlin meets with lawmakers to discuss whether to recommend that Netanyahu remain as prime minister following last month’s deadlocked election (Times of Israel).
April 5, 2021
Jailed Palestinian Militant to Challenge Abbas in Elections
Marwan Barghouti, a popular militant currently serving a life sentence in an Israeli prison, intends to challenge Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s party in the territories’ May elections. The power struggle could weaken the Fatah party, which controls the Palestinian Authority, and strengthen Hamas, the militant group that controls Gaza (New York Times).
April 1, 2021
Vote Counting Underway for Israeli Parliamentary Elections
With almost 90 percent of votes counted, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party leads in parliamentary elections held yesterday. Still, whether he will gain enough seats to form a coalition government is unclear, raising the possibility of a fifth election (Haaretz). Separately, the Israeli military conducted raids overnight on Hamas positions in Gaza. Air strikes reportedly attacked a rocket manufacturing site and military post, in response to rockets fired from Gaza (Al Jazeera).
March 24, 2021
Israel Holds Fourth Parliamentary Elections in Two Years
The country holds its fourth parliamentary elections in two years tomorrow. Polls indicate a close race, though Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu holds a slight edge (Associated Press). Tens of thousands of people urged Netanyahu to resign at a protest in Jerusalem on Saturday (Times of Israel).
March 22, 2021
Israeli Troops Kill Palestinian Protestor During Stone-Throwing Clash
A Palestinian man involved in a weekly protest against Israeli settlements was shot by Israeli soldiers today. According to a witness, a group of Palestinians threw stones towards the soldiers and the soldiers opened fire (Reuters).
March 19, 2021
Memo Lays Out U.S. Plan to Reset Relations With Palestinians
A U.S. State Department memo obtained by the National reportedly details a plan to reset U.S.-Palestinian relations, including by providing coronavirus aid and backtracking on positions espoused by the Trump administration that were seen as favoring Israel (National). Sources said the plan is at an early “working stage” (Reuters).
March 18, 2021
Kosovo Opens Embassy in Jerusalem
Kosovo opened an embassy in Jerusalem weeks after establishing diplomatic relations with Israel. The United States and Guatemala are the only other countries with embassies in Jerusalem, the status of which is central to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict (Al Jazeera).
March 15, 2021
ICC to Investigate War Crimes in the Palestinian Territories
International Criminal Court (ICC) chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda announced a probe into possible war crimes perpetrated by Israeli and Palestinian groups in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Israel rebuked the move as anti-Semitic, while the Palestinian Authority praised it (Haaretz).
March 4, 2021
Palestinian Factions Meet Ahead of Elections
Fourteen Palestinian political groups kicked off a two-day, Egypt-backed dialogue in Cairo to iron out issues before legislative and presidential elections are held later this year. The elections will be the first since Palestinian governance fractured over the results of elections in 2006 (Al Jazeera).
February 9, 2021
Israel Demolishes Palestinian Bedouin Village
Israeli authorities have begun demolishing a Bedouin village in the West Bank for the second time in three months, after claiming it was an illegal construction. A rights group claimed this was an attempt to displace the entire Palestinian community from the area (Reuters).
February 3, 2021
Israel to Send Five Thousand COVID-19 Vaccines to West Bank
Israel will send five thousand COVID-19 vaccine doses to the West Bank, which it previously gave one hundred doses for medical personnel. Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza have been left out of Israel’s vaccination campaign, sparking international criticism (Haaretz).
February 1, 2021
U.S. Will Restore Relations With Palestinians
U.S. President Joe Biden’s administration plans to restore aid to Palestinians and reopen diplomatic missions that were closed by the previous administration, said acting U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Richard Mills. Mills also reaffirmed U.S. support for a “mutually agreed two-state solution” (New York Times).
January 27, 2021
Israel Conducts Air Strikes in Syria
Syrian state media reported that Israeli air strikes in the region of Hama killed four people. In recent years, Israel has launched hundreds of air strikes in Syria against suspected Iranian military deployments (Reuters).
January 22, 2021
Israel Approves New Construction in West Bank
The Israeli government approved the construction of nearly eight hundred housing units in settlements in the occupied West Bank. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres urged Israel to reverse the decision, calling it a “flagrant violation under international law” (Times of Israel, Agence France-Presse).
January 19, 2021
Israel to Build Eight Hundred New Homes in the West Bank
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu confirmed that a Defense Ministry panel will approve plans to construct some eight hundred homes for Jewish settlers in the Israel-occupied West Bank (Times of Israel).
January 11, 2021
Militants in Gaza Fire Rockets in “Joint Exercise”
Militant groups in the Gaza Strip fired rockets into the sea in what they said was their first joint exercise. Israeli media described the event as a show of force organized by Iran (Reuters).
December 29, 2020
Israeli Government Collapses Again
The Knesset dissolved after the parties of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Benny Gantz failed to reach a deal on this year’s budget. The dissolution triggers the country’s fourth elections in less than two years, set for March 23 (Haaretz).
December 23, 2020
Israel Appears Set to Hold Snap Elections in 2021
Israel could be forced to hold its fourth elections in two years after the country’s leaders failed to resolve a dispute over the budget (Reuters). Since establishing a unity government in May after three inconclusive elections, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who leads the Likud party, and Defense Minister Benny Gantz, who heads the Blue and White alliance, have been unable to agree on the 2020 budget. Lawmakers in the Knesset rejected a proposal overnight to postpone the deadline to reach a deal (Haaretz). If the two sides cannot pass a budget by tonight, the government will dissolve and elections will be automatically set for March 23 (Washington Post). The budget dispute comes as Israel has normalized relations with several Arab nations through U.S.-brokered deals; the first direct flight from Israel to Morocco took off today (Times of Israel).
December 22, 2020
Israel Begins COVID-19 Vaccination Campaign
Around ten thousand health-care workers and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu received COVID-19 vaccines yesterday as Israel kicks off its vaccination campaign. More than 170,000 people have scheduled appointments, sparking logistical concerns (Haaretz).
December 21, 2020
Palestinian Territories Wait for COVID-19 Vaccine
Though Israel is set to begin COVID-19 vaccinations next week, millions of people living in the Palestinian territories will have to wait for vaccines to be distributed by the Palestinian Authority (Associated Press). Officials in Gaza have warned that the health-care system there is at risk of collapse due to a sharp increase in COVID-19 patients (Haaretz).
December 17, 2020
Israel Establishes Diplomatic Ties With Bhutan
The country established full diplomatic ties with Bhutan over the weekend. The deal was not linked to recent U.S.-brokered agreements between Israel and Arab countries (Times of Israel).
December 14, 2020
Morocco Agrees to Normalize Ties With Israel
Morocco will normalize relations with Israel under a deal brokered by the Donald J. Trump administration, making it the fourth Arab country to set aside hostilities with Israel in recent months. The two countries will establish full diplomatic relations, open liaison offices, and allow direct flights between them. Palestinian factions have criticized the normalization agreements, with a Hamas spokesperson saying they allow Israel to “increase its aggression” (Al Jazeera). Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu promised “a very warm peace” between Israel and Morocco (Haaretz). As part of the deal, the United States agreed to support Morocco’s sovereignty over the disputed region of Western Sahara, where Algeria-backed separatists known as the Polisario Front have sought independence for decades (New York Times).
December 11, 2020
Palestinian Child Killed at West Bank Protest
Israeli forces shot and killed a fifteen-year-old Palestinian boy who was at a protest in the West Bank on Friday. He was the fifth Palestinian child to be killed by Israeli forces using live ammunition this year, according to the rights group Defense for Children International – Palestine (Al Jazeera).
December 7, 2020
Israeli Government Transfers Tax Revenue to Palestinian Authority
The Israeli government handed over $1.14 billion worth of backlogged tax revenue to the Palestinian Authority (PA) in a sign of thawing relations. The transfer, which usually occurs monthly, was the first since June after the PA rejected it due to Israel’s now-suspended plans to annex parts of the West Bank (Reuters).
December 2, 2020
Israel’s Netanyahu Reportedly Meets With Saudi Crown Prince
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Saudi Arabia yesterday, according to unnamed Israeli and Saudi sources (Haaretz). If confirmed, it would be the first known trip by an Israeli leader to Saudi Arabia and the first known meeting between the two current leaders (Wall Street Journal).
November 23, 2020
Pompeo Makes Unprecedented Visit to West Bank Settlement
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made an unprecedented visit to an Israeli settlement in the West Bank during a three-day trip to Israel. Pompeo also referred to the boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel as anti-Semitic and said the United States would withdraw support from groups that “engage in hateful BDS conduct.” Meanwhile, the U.S. State Department announced that products made in the settlements can list Israel as their country of origin (Haaretz).
November 19, 2020
Palestinian Authority to Resume Cooperation With Israel
The Palestinian Authority announced it will resume security and civil cooperation with Israel, which it had halted in May over Israel’s plans to annex parts of the West Bank. Those plans were suspended pursuant to Israel’s deal to normalize relations with the United Arab Emirates (Haaretz).
November 18, 2020
Top Palestinian Negotiator Saeb Erekat Dies
Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Secretary-General Saeb Erekat died today after contracting COVID-19 last month. He was sixty-five. Erekat, the lead Palestinian peace negotiator, had participated in every round of negotiations with Israel since the tenure of former Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin in the 1990s (Haaretz).
November 10, 2020
UN: Israel Forces Raze a Village in the Occupied West Bank
Israeli forces razed a village in the occupied West Bank, displacing seventy-three people, including forty-one children, according to the United Nations. It was the largest such displacement in recent years (Guardian).
November 5, 2020
Israel, Sudan Agree to Normalize Ties
Israel and Sudan agreed to normalize relations in a U.S.-brokered deal on Friday, making Sudan the third Arab country to establish ties with Israel this year. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said delegations would soon meet to discuss cooperation on trade and agriculture. As part of the deal, the United States will remove Sudan from its list of countries that sponsor terrorism (Haaretz).
October 26, 2020
Israel, Sudan Reportedly Nearing Deal in Normalizing Relations
The two countries are reportedly nearing a deal to normalize relations, which would make Sudan the third Arab country to do so this year, after Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates (Times of Israel).
October 23, 2020
Israeli Police Officer Could Face Trial for Shooting Palestinian Man
An Israeli police officer who killed an autistic Palestinian man in May could face trial for homicide, pending a hearing. The Israeli Justice Ministry said the man posed no danger and that the officer shot him against orders (Haaretz).
October 22, 2020
Israeli Warplanes Fire Missiles at Gaza Strip
Palestinian sources said that Israeli warplanes hit two agricultural areas in Khan Younis and Deir al-Balah. However, Israeli military said that the raids hit a purported tunnel belonging to the Palestinian group Hamas and that the attack was in retaliation to a rocket fire from Gaza (Al Jazeera).
October 21, 2020
Israel, Lebanon Begin First Talks in Decades
Officials from Israel and Lebanon met today for negotiations—the countries’ first direct civilian diplomatic talks in thirty years—aimed at resolving their disputed maritime border (Haaretz). The talks ended after roughly an hour, with an agreement to meet again in two weeks (Reuters).
October 14, 2020
Palestinian Factions Agree to First Election in Almost Fifteen Years
Rival Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas reached a deal during reconciliation talks this week to hold the territories’ first elections in almost fifteen years (Al Jazeera). Successive elections, which will occur in the next six months, will choose the Palestinian Legislative Council, the Palestinian Authority (PA) president, and the Palestinian National Council, senior Fatah official Jibril Rajoub said. Palestinian leaders will likely meet next week to solidify the plans (Al-Monitor).
September 25, 2020
Palestinians Step Down as Arab League Chair
Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki said the territories would concede chairmanship of Arab League meetings over fellow members normalizing ties with Israel. Separately, two Palestinian factions—Fatah and Hamas—will meet today for reconciliation talks (Al Jazeera).
September 23, 2020
Authorities to Close Holy Sites in Jerusalem as Coronavirus Cases Rise
Authorities said Jerusalem’s holy site, which is known by Jews as the Temple Mount and Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary, will close tomorrow as Israel’s coronavirus caseload soars and the country begins a second lockdown (Agence France-Presse). Jerusalem’s Great Synagogue will be shuttered for the first time during the Jewish New Year (Agence France-Presse).
September 17, 2020
Israel to Sign Normalization Agreements With Bahrain, United Arab Emirates
Israel is set to sign agreements to normalize diplomatic ties with Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates in a White House ceremony today (CNN). The agreements, championed by the Donald J. Trump administration, offer all three countries political and economic advantages (Financial Times). But they have been roundly rejected by Palestinian factions, including Hamas and Fatah, that have recently coalesced in opposition. Protests are planned today in Gaza and the West Bank and outside embassies around the world (Al Jazeera). Separately, a court handed a Jewish settler three life sentences plus additional time in prison for a 2015 firebomb attack that killed three Palestinians, including a toddler (Haaretz). Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has called the attack an act of terrorism (New York Times).
September 15, 2020
Palestinians Meet to Discuss West Bank
Rival Palestinian factions met to discuss ways to prevent Israeli annexation of the occupied West Bank. They also denounced the normalization of Israel-United Arab Emirates relations (Al Jazeera).
September 4, 2020
Hamas, Israel Reach Deal to Stop Violence
The Palestinian militant group Hamas announced it reached a Qatar-brokered deal with Israel to end a monthlong spike in hostilities. Hamas had for weeks launched incendiary balloons and rockets into Israel, while Israel struck Hamas sites in the Gaza Strip (New York Times). Israel said it would reopen Gaza’s fishing zone and border crossings (Times of Israel).
September 1, 2020
Israel, UAE to Normalize Diplomatic Ties in Major Agreement
After months of secretive talks, Israel and the United Arab Emirates have announced a landmark deal to begin to normalize their diplomatic relations. Under the deal, brokered by the United States and announced yesterday, Israel will also temporarily halt annexation of parts of the West Bank (Wall Street Journal). The agreement makes the UAE only the third Arab state to recognize Israel, after Egypt and Jordan. The two sides are expected to sign the agreement and establish embassies in each other’s country in the coming weeks (Al-Monitor).
August 14, 2020
Israel Strikes Targets in Gaza
Israel attacked Hamas targets in the Gaza Strip in retaliation for incendiary balloons sent into Israel from the area, the Israeli military said. The country will also halt fuel imports to Gaza and reduce the territory’s fishing zone (Haaretz).
August 13, 2020
Israel Strikes Hamas Targets in Gaza
Over the weekend, explosive-laden balloons were sent from Gaza into Israel, which the Israeli army responded to by striking Hamas targets in northern Gaza. A Hamas official said the explosive-laden balloons were meant to serve as a signal to Israel and international bodies concerning a lack of progress on a cease-fire agreement (Haaretz).
August 10, 2020
Israel Repels Attacks in Country’s North, South
Israel’s army said it struck four people who allegedly tried to plant explosives near the country’s border with Syria (Haaretz). Israeli warplanes also reportedly hit Hamas facilities in the Gaza Strip after Palestinians launched a rocket into Israel from the territory (Times of Israel).
August 3, 2020
Israeli Forces Demolish Quarantine Center in Hebron
Israeli forces yesterday demolished a building used as a quarantine center for Palestinians in the West Bank. The UN’s Special Envoy for Middle East Peace, Nicholay Mladenov, said he is “concerned” with the decrease in coordination between Israelis and Palestinians amid the COVID-19 outbreak and Israel’s impending annexation plans (Al Jazeera).
July 22, 2020
Report: Israel Drafts List of Officials Who Could Be Charged by ICC
Israel is reportedly drafting a list of hundreds of Israeli officials who could be arrested abroad if the International Criminal Court (ICC) opens an investigation of potential war crimes committed by Israel and Hamas in the Palestinian territories beginning in 2014. The ICC’s decision on whether it has jurisdiction over the Palestinian territories is expected soon. Israel is not an ICC member and does not recognize its jurisdiction (Haaretz).
July 17, 2020
Israel Responds to Rocket Fire From Gaza With Air Raids
An informal cease-fire was broken over the weekend when Israel responded to three alleged rockets fired from the Gaza Strip by carrying out air raids at the Hamas-run enclave (Al Jazeera).
July 6, 2020
Deadline for West Bank Annexation Comes Without Announcement
Israeli officials, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, have yet to signal imminent action to annex parts of the West Bank, even though Netanyahu set today as the potential start date. Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi said it was unlikely that any major action would happen today (Times of Israel).
July 1, 2020
UN Condemns Israel’s Annexation Plans
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called on Israel to abandon plans to annex parts of the West Bank, calling the move a “most serious violation of international law” in a report to the UN Security Council (Agence France-Presse).
June 24, 2020
United States, Israel Discuss West Bank Annexation
The Trump administration and Israeli government are discussing plans for Israel’s “gradual” annexation of parts of the West Bank. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu set a July 1 deadline to begin the annexation, which has drawn international criticism (Haaretz).
June 22, 2020
Germany, Jordan: Stopping West Bank Annexation Is a Priority
In a joint statement with Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh, Germany and Jordan’s foreign ministers called Israel’s plan to annex parts of the West Bank a violation of international law and said stopping it is a priority. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas also warned Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that other nations could sanction Israel or recognize a Palestinian state if he moves forward with annexation (Haaretz).
June 11, 2020
Israel’s Supreme Court Rejects 2017 Law on Settlement Construction
In an eight-to-one ruling, Israel’s Supreme Court rejected a 2017 law passed by Parliament which would have legalized the construction of Jewish settlements on land in the West Bank (New York Times).
June 10, 2020
Israelis Protest Annexation Plans
Thousands gathered in Tel Aviv to protest the government’s plan to annex parts of the West Bank. U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders addressed the rally via video conference (Haaretz).
June 8, 2020
Netanyahu: West Bank Annexation Independent of U.S. Plan
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu privately told settlers that his plans to annex parts of the West Bank will be independent of the Trump administration’s peace plan. His office later released a statement saying Israel is committed to negotiations with Palestinians under the Trump plan (Haaretz).
June 3, 2020
Police Killing in Israel Sparks Protests
Police killed an unarmed, autistic Palestinian man in East Jerusalem, sparking protests in Jerusalem and Jaffa (Haaretz).
June 1, 2020
Palestinian Authority Rejects Coronavirus Aid
The Palestinian Authority rejected medical aid from a shipment the United Arab Emirates sent via Israel, citing insufficient coordination with Palestinian leadership. The aid was redirected to the Gaza Strip (Haaretz).
May 22, 2020
Palestinian Leader Declares Agreements With Israel, U.S. Void
In response to the Israeli government’s intent to annex parts of the West Bank, Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas declared that the PA will no longer abide by agreements with and Israel and the United States, including those regarding security cooperation (Haaretz). In a speech in Ramallah, Abbas said the planned annexation “annulled the Oslo agreement” and subsequent pacts, referring to the accords signed by Israel and the Palestinian Liberation Organization in the 1990s. Abbas and other Palestinian leaders have threatened to cut security ties with Israel in the past but never followed through (New York Times).
May 20, 2020
Israeli Convicted of Murdering Three Palestinians
An Israeli settler was convicted of murdering three members of a Palestinian family, including an infant, in a 2015 arson attack. He had confessed to the crimes multiple times but earlier confessions had been ruled inadmissible (Haaretz).
May 19, 2020
Violence Continues in the West Bank
Israeli forces killed a Palestinian teenager in the West Bank after a suspected car-ramming attack injured a member of the Israel Defense Forces. An Israeli soldier and another Palestinian teen were killed in separate incidents earlier this week (Haaretz).
May 15, 2020
Pompeo Visits Israel on Eve of New Government’s Inauguration
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu discussed the coronavirus and regional efforts to counter Iran on the eve of a new Israeli coalition government’s inauguration (Haaretz). Pompeo appeared to deliver a cautionary message about new Israeli annexations in the West Bank (New York Times).
May 14, 2020
Palestinian Teen Killed in West Bank Clashes
A Palestinian teenager was killed by the Israel Defense Forces at a refugee camp near Hebron, according to the Palestinian health ministry. A day earlier, an Israeli soldier was killed by a brick thrown at his head during a raid in the West Bank, the military said (Times of Israel).
May 13, 2020
Israel Warned Against West Bank Annexation
Envoys from the European Union and the United Nations warned the incoming Israeli government not to annex parts of the occupied West Bank. The move would violate an internationally backed two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict (Al Jazeera).
April 24, 2020
Washington to Give $5 Million in Aid to Palestine
The White House approved $5 million in aid for the Palestinian response to the coronavirus after previously cutting all aid to the Palestinian Authority (Times of Israel).
April 17, 2020
UN Reaffirms Support for Israel-Palestine Two-State Solution
All fifteen countries on the UN Security Council endorsed a statement yesterday that supported a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as well as a multilateral approach to negotiations (Associated Press).
February 25, 2020
Israel Strikes Palestinian Militants in Gaza, Damascus
Israeli military forces and the militant group Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) exchanged strikes in Gaza after a Palestinian news agency posted footage of an Israeli army bulldozer dragging the body of a Palestinian man (Washington Post). Israel also announced it had struck PIJ targets in Damascus, Syria (BBC).
February 24, 2020
Israel Bars Palestinian Agriculture Exports Via Jordan
The Israeli military will no longer allow Palestinian agricultural products to be exported via Jordan, officials from both countries said, marking the latest escalation in Israel and the Palestinian territories’ monthslong trade war (Associated Press).
February 10, 2020
Unrest Leads to Casualties in West Bank, Jerusalem
Israeli troops killed a Palestinian man at a West Bank protest against the new U.S. peace plan for the Middle East, and a car ran down a group of Israeli soldiers in Jerusalem, injuring twelve, Israeli and Palestinian authorities said (Reuters).
February 6, 2020
EU Foreign Policy Minister Rejects Middle East Peace Plan
Josep Borrell, the EU foreign affairs minister, criticized the Trump administration’s proposed peace plan for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, stating that it departs from “internationally agreed parameters” and eliminates mechanisms for negotiations over disputed territory (Reuters).
February 4, 2020
Trump Plan Envisions Israeli Control of Jerusalem, West Bank Settlements
U.S. President Donald J. Trump unveiled a peace plan that proposes Israel’s control of a unified Jerusalem and all of its current settlements in the West Bank, while a new Palestinian state would receive $50 billion in investment (New York Times).
January 29, 2020
Trump Set to Release Israeli-Palestinian Peace Deal
U.S. President Donald J. Trump is scheduled to release his plan for a resolution to the conflict between the Israelis and Palestinians today in a press conference with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (New York Times). Palestinian leaders, who have boycotted negotiations with the Trump administration since 2017, have already rejected the new plan, which is expected to propose Israeli sovereignty over much of the Jordan Valley (Al-Monitor).
January 28, 2020
Gantz, Netanyahu to Join White House Peace Plan Talks
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his political rival, Benny Gantz, accepted invitations from the White House to visit next week to discuss an Israeli-Palestinian peace plan, U.S. Vice President Mike Pence said (Haaretz).
January 24, 2020
Israel Expands Settlements in West Bank
The country plans to build a new settlement in the West Bank city of Hebron, the defense minister announced. A top Palestinian diplomat called the move “the first tangible result of the U.S. decision to legitimize colonization” (Haaretz).
December 2, 2019
Israel Attacks Iranian, Syrian Targets in Syria
Two people were killed in the air attacks on the outskirts of Damascus early today, according to Syrian state media. Israel said the attacks, against Iran’s elite Quds Force and the Syrian army, were in retaliation for rocket attacks fired from Syria toward Israeli territory yesterday (Al Jazeera).
November 20, 2019
U.S. Shifts Stance on Israeli Settlements
In a reversal of decades-old policy, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that the United States will no longer consider Israeli settlements in the West Bank to be illegal under international law (Haaretz). The move is seen as a victory for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who promised ahead of September’s election to annex all West Bank settlements if he remained in office. Netanyahu is fighting to keep his position after failing to form a government as his rival, former defense official Benny Gantz, faces a deadline tomorrow to do so. The European Union’s foreign policy chief and Jordan’s foreign minister criticized the U.S. move, while a Palestinian official called it “horrific” (New York Times).
November 19, 2019
Israel, Gaza Militants Reach Tenuous Truce
Israel and the Palestinian militant group Islamic Jihad agreed to a cease-fire that was to begin this morning after more than two days of escalated fighting, according to spokespeople for both sides. However, Gazan militants reportedly fired rockets into Israel after the truce began (Associated Press).
November 14, 2019
Death Toll From Gaza Strikes Rises
Israeli air strikes killed nine people in Gaza today, according to medical officials, bringing the total killed in the past two days to nineteen. Militants from the Palestinian Islamic Jihad group fired around two hundred rockets into Israel yesterday after an Israeli strike killed one of the group’s commanders (Reuters).
November 13, 2019
Israeli Strike Kills Militant Commander in Gaza
The strike killed a senior commander of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad group, prompting retaliatory rocket fire toward southern and central Israel (New York Times).
November 12, 2019
Chief Representative for UN Palestinian Refugee Agency Resigns
The head of the UN agency for Palestinian refugees resigned following the release of preliminary results of a misconduct investigation (United Nations).
November 7, 2019
Israeli Court Expels Human Rights Official
The country’s top court upheld the expulsion of Human Rights Watch’s director for Israel and the Palestinian territories due to his alleged support of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement. The court ordered him to leave the country within twenty days (Haaretz).
November 6, 2019
Israel’s Netanyahu Vows West Bank Annexation
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that if he stays in his position after elections next week, he will move to annex the Jordan Valley, territory that runs from northern Israel to the Dead Sea and comprises nearly a third of the occupied West Bank (Haaretz). Netanyahu said he aimed to take advantage of the “unique” opportunity of U.S. support for the annexation of parts of the West Bank, and that a White House peace plan would be released soon after the vote. Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas said such a move will end all signed agreements with Israel (Reuters).
September 11, 2019
U.S. Mideast Envoy Resigns
President Donald J. Trump’s lead Middle East envoy, Jason Greenblatt, who worked with White House advisor Jared Kushner to draft an Israeli-Palestinian peace plan, announced he is stepping down. One of Kushner’s top aides is set to replace Greenblatt (Associated Press).
September 6, 2019
Gaza on Alert After Explosions
The interior ministry of Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, declared Gaza under a state of emergency after three police officers were killed in explosions at Hamas police checkpoints late yesterday, according to officials (New York Times).
August 28, 2019
Alleged Israeli Strikes Prompt Calls for Restraint
Iraqi and Lebanese leaders condemned strikes in their countries they say were carried out by Israel, calling them an attack on national sovereignty and “similar to a declaration of war,” while the UN urged restraint from all parties (Guardian). Separately, Israel announced yesterday that it will suspend half of its fuel supply to Gaza following rocket attacks from the Gaza Strip (Reuters).
August 27, 2019
Israel Reportedly Attacks Palestinian Base in Lebanon
Lebanese state media reported that Israel’s air force attacked a Palestinian base in eastern Lebanon today. Yesterday, two drones that Lebanon said were Israeli crashed south of Beirut (Associated Press).
August 26, 2019
Hamas Gives Israel Ultimatum
Hamas threatened to escalate violence if Israel does not allow Qatari money to be transferred to Gaza. Qatari envoy Mohammed Al-Amadi is expected to visit Israeli and Hamas officials soon (Jerusalem Post).
August 20, 2019
Gaza Gunfire Reportedly Kills Three; Israel Denies Entry to U.S. Congresswoman
Hamas’s health ministry said three people were killed and one wounded by Israeli forces in the Gaza Strip. Israel said three rockets were fired from Gaza into Israel the day before (Agence France-Presse). Additionally, after two Palestinians stabbed an Israeli policeman in Jerusalem, one was killed by Israeli police (Reuters). Israeli police killed a Palestinian driver who reportedly drove a car into two Israeli civilians in the West Bank (Reuters). Separately, the Israeli government announced it will block a planned visit by U.S. Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, after coming under pressure from the White House to do so (Ynet). Finally, U.S. President Donald Trump announced he will likely release his Middle East peace plan after Israel’s September elections (Reuters).
August 19, 2019
Israeli Army Kills Four Palestinian Militants Attempting to Cross Gaza Fence
The Israeli army killed four Palestinian militants who attempted to cross the Gaza Strip’s perimeter fence. The Israeli army also arrested a Palestinian cell in the West Bank on grounds of involvement in killing an off-duty soldier (Associated Press). Separately, the Israeli police clashed with Palestinians yesterday outside Jerusalem’s al-Aqsa mosque (Reuters).
August 12, 2019
Israel Arrests Suspected Palestinian Bombers
The Israeli military arrested three Palestinians suspected of plotting a bombing in Jerusalem (Associated Press). Separately, Israel is reportedly proceeding with constructing 2,300 new housing units for settlers in the West Bank (Associated Press).
August 7, 2019
Countries Pull Funding for UN Agency for Palestinians
The Netherlands and Switzerland suspended support for the UN agency for Palestinian refugees following a leak from an ethics investigation that found evidence of nepotism and discrimination among top agency officials (Al Jazeera).
August 1, 2019
Israel Announces New Settlement in West Bank
Israel reported that it will build six thousand new residences in the West Bank. The announcement comes shortly before a visit by U.S. officials to discuss an Israeli-Palestinian peace plan (Reuters).
July 31, 2019
U.S. Blocks UN Move to Condemn Israel
The United States blocked an effort by several countries at the United Nations to denounce Israel’s demolition of Palestinian housing on the outskirts of Jerusalem, according to diplomats (Reuters).
July 25, 2019
U.S. Congress Passes Resolution Condemning Movement Targeting Israel
The U.S. House of Representatives adopted a bipartisan resolution condemning the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions movement, which seeks to sanction Israel on grounds of human rights abuses (Associated Press). Separately, the U.S. Middle East negotiator, Jason Greenblatt, announced before the UN Security Council that international consensus is not a worthwhile objective for the U.S. plan for Middle East peace (Associated Press).
July 24, 2019
Israel Bulldozes Palestinian Homes in East Jerusalem
Israeli forces began bulldozing Palestinian homes in Sur Baher in East Jerusalem today (Reuters).
July 22, 2019
Israeli Court Charges Palestinian Authority
Today, an Israeli court found the Palestinian Authority and the Palestine Liberation Organization guilty for financially supporting and inciting attacks in the early 2000s (Associated Press).
July 9, 2019
Israel Intercepts Gazan Drone
Today, Israel announced that it shot down and recovered a drone launched from the Gaza Strip (Associated Press).
July 8, 2019
Palestinian Businessman, Minister for Jerusalem Affairs Released
The Palestinian Authority released Salah Abu Mayala, a Palestinian businessman detained for participating in the U.S.-organized Bahrain Conference (Al Jazeera). Separately, Israel released the Palestinian Minister for Jerusalem Affairs after he was detained for several hours without explanation (Al Jazeera).
July 1, 2019
U.S. Middle East Economic Plan Spurs Resistance
The Trump administration’s $50 billion Middle East investment plan sparked dissent in the region. In the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, Palestinian protestors have burned portraits of U.S. President Donald Trump (Reuters). Lebanese leaders rejected the plan, which requires the naturalization of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon, and are boycotting today’s Bahrain Conference (Reuters).
June 25, 2019
United States Proposes Economic Portion of Israel-Palestinian Peace Plan
The Trump administration unveiled a $50 billion investment plan for the Palestinian territories, Egypt, Lebanon, and Jordan, to accompany a political solution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict (Reuters). The plan was rebuked by the Palestinian Liberation Organization and Palestinian Authority, neither of which will attend tomorrow’s Bahrain Conference (Reuters).
June 24, 2019
Israeli, Palestinian Leaders to Skip Bahrain Meeting
The United States reportedly decided not to invite top Israeli officials to a Bahrain conference this month, at which it plans to unveil the economic part of its Israeli-Palestinian peace plan. The Palestinian leadership had already said it would boycott the conference (Axios).
June 18, 2019
U.S. Renews Push for Middle East Peace Plan
The United States and Bahrain will cohost a conference in Manama next month to encourage investment in the Palestinian territories as an incentive for Palestinian leadership to seek a peace deal with Israel. The White House has not said whether its proposed deal would include a two-state solution (Al Jazeera).
May 20, 2019
Qatar to Send $480 Million in Aid to Palestinians
Qatar is sending $480 million in humanitarian aid to Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza following the worst bout of violence between Israel and Gaza in years this past weekend. Qatar has long been a donor to Palestinians (Al Jazeera).
May 7, 2019
Israel, Gaza See Worst Violence Since 2014
This weekend, Israel carried out air strikes on the Gaza Strip after militants shot six hundred rockets into southern Israel, in what was the worst bout of violence since the 2014 conflict between Israel and Hamas (NPR). Following the intense fighting that wounded hundreds and killed at least twenty-five Palestinians and four Israelis, Hamas and Islamic Jihad said a cease-fire was in place with Israel’s military (Washington Post). Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office did not confirm the cease-fire (Haaretz)
May 6, 2019
Israeli Air Force Targets Gaza in Response to Incendiary Balloon Attacks
In response to hundreds of incendiary balloons launched by Hamas at Israel, the Israeli Air Force carried out a series of overnight strikes targeting the Gaza Strip. According to the Israeli military, two rockets were launched at Israel in retaliation (Jerusalem Post).
May 2, 2019
Palestinians Refuse To Accept Tax Revenues Collected by Israel
Palestinian Leader Mahmoud Abbas said his government will continue to refuse tax revenues collected by Israel through custom duties on products destined for Palestinian markets. The Palestinian Authority (PA) has refused to accept the earnings since February, when Israel announced that it would deduct about $10 million each month, equal to the amount it says the PA paid to the families of Palestinians jailed in Israel (Agence France-Presse).
April 29, 2019
Israeli Court Orders HRW Director Deported
A Jerusalem district court gave Omar Shakir, Human Rights Watch’s director for Israel and Palestine, until May 1 to leave the country for allegedly voicing support for a boycott movement, pending an appeal to the Supreme Court (Jerusalem Post). The group has called for businesses to stop facilitating abuses in the occupied West Bank (Human Rights Watch).
April 17, 2019
Prominent Palestinian Activist Denied U.S. Entry
Omar Barghouti, a co-founder of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement that seeks to apply economic pressure on Israel over its treatment of Palestinians, said he was prevented from boarding a U.S.-bound flight from Israel (New York Times).
April 12, 2019
March of Return Protests Along Gaza Border Turn Violent
According to Israeli officials, Hamas exercised restraint at the Gaza border during this weekend’s protests marking the one-year anniversary of the March of Return demonstrations. The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said its military personnel opened fire on Palestinians who hurled explosive devices and hand grenades towards the border fence, while Gaza’s Health Ministry reported that three protestors were killed, along over three hundred casualties, including sixty people wounded by live Israeli fire (Haaretz).
April 1, 2019
Trump Recognizes Israeli Sovereignty Over the Golan Heights
U.S. President Donald J. Trump will reportedly sign a decree today officially recognizing Israeli sovereignty over the contested Golan Heights (Reuters). Separately, in response to a rocket allegedly fired from Gaza into Tel Aviv that wounded seven, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu cut short his visit to Washington and said that Israel “will respond forcefully” to the attack (Al Jazeera).
March 25, 2019
Hamas Attacks Gazan Protestors
Hamas forcibly suppressed unarmed demonstrators who rallied against Gaza’s declining living conditions and increasing oil prices (Guardian). Separately, Israeli military police announced an investigation into the deaths of eleven Palestinians killed by live fire during protests in Gaza last year near the Israeli border (Haaretz).
March 21, 2019
Rights Groups Accuse Hamas of Crushing Gaza Protests
Hamas security forces are violently cracking down on protests that began Thursday over dire economic conditions in Gaza, according to human rights groups in the area. A Hamas spokesperson blamed the unrest on the Palestinian Authority (Al Jazeera).
March 19, 2019
Israel Strikes One Hundred Suspected Hamas Sites
The Israeli military carried out the air strikes overnight after two rockets reportedly flew toward Tel Aviv. It said it believed Hamas was behind the launches and reported no damage (Washington Post). The Gaza Health Ministry reported four people injured in the Israeli strikes. Organizers of Friday protests along the border called off this week’s demonstration to prevent further escalation (Haaretz).
March 15, 2019
Israeli Forces Kill One, Injure Forty-Two During Gaza Protests
Israeli troops killed one Palestinian and injured forty-two during protests at the Gaza Strip border (Reuters).
March 8, 2019
U.S. Embassy and Consulate Merge in Jerusalem
The U.S. Consulate in Jerusalem, which primarily served the capital’s Palestinians, officially merged with the U.S. Embassy in Israel. U.S. Department of State Spokesman Robert Palladino reported this decision was carried out to enhance diplomatic engagements and does not signal a change in U.S. foreign policy towards Jerusalem (Time).
March 4, 2019
UN: Gaza Protester Deaths May Amount to War Crimes
A United Nations commission reported that Israel may have committed war crimes or crimes against humanity in a crackdown last year on protests at the Gaza border. According to UN investigators, Israeli forces killed 189 people, including dozens of children (New York Times).
February 28, 2019
Gazan Demonstrators Protest Against Palestinian Leader Abbas
Thousands of protesters called for Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to step down following his attempts to put financial pressure on Hamas. Demonstrators also called for Israel to end its decade-long blockade of Gaza (Al Jazeera).
February 25, 2019
Palestinians Protest Israeli Move to Eject Foreign Observers
The Palestinian Authority called on the United Nations yesterday to deploy a permanent observer mission to the West Bank and East Jerusalem after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he would not renew the mandate of a decades-old civilian observer mission in the West Bank city of Hebron (Associated Press).
January 30, 2019
Hamas Rejects Qatari Aid
The Palestinian militant movement Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, said it will not accept the latest monthly transfer of $15 million from Doha, part of an informal deal totaling $90 million, due to the Israeli “occupation’s behavior and attempts to evade the agreement,” according to a top Hamas official (Haaretz). The group reportedly accuses Israel of demanding a halt to protests in Gaza before it will allow the funds to be delivered through its territory (Al Jazeera).
January 25, 2019
Palestinian Authority to Reject U.S. Security Aid
The Palestinian Authority told Secretary of State Mike Pompeo that it will no longer accept security aid as the Anti-Terrorism Clarification Act 2018 enters into force at the start of February. The new law will allow American victims of violent crime to sue recipients of aid in U.S. courts (Wafa).
January 22, 2019
Palestinian Groups Form New Political Body
Five Palestinian political groups announced they are forming a new body in the West Bank and Gaza Strip to challenge the ruling Fatah party and Hamas militant movement, which have dominated Palestinian politics (Associated Press).
January 4, 2019
Hamas and Israel Agree to Cease-Fire
Hamas leaders agreed to abide by an Egypt-brokered cease-fire to halt an escalation of fighting with Israel along the Gaza border that began Monday (Al Jazeera). Israeli opposition leaders and some residents in targeted towns criticized the truce (New York Times).
November 14, 2018
Israel Carries Out Air Strikes on Gaza Strip
Israel carried out dozens of air strikes on the Gaza Strip today, a day after the Palestinian militant group Hamas launched more than four hundred rocket attacks across the Israeli border (Reuters).
November 13, 2018
Palestinian Authorities Call to Suspend Recognition of Israel
The Palestinian Central Council authorized the Palestine Liberation Organization to suspend recognition of Israel, stop security coordination, end agreements laid out in the 1994 Paris Economic Protocol, and invalidate the legitimacy of the Oslo Accords “in light of Israel’s continued denial of signed agreements” (Al Jazeera).
October 30, 2018
Israel Ends Fuel Blockage to Gaza Strip
Israel will end a twelve-day fuel blockage and allow diesel shipments to the Gaza Strip to resume. Israel had suspended the fuel deliveries after Israeli troops killed five Palestinians who, the army said, broke through a border fence to attack a military post (Agence France-Presse).
October 24, 2018
Netanyahu, Trump Talk Israel-Palestine at UN General Assembly
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said yesterday that Israel “will not relinquish security control west of Jordan” to any future Palestinian state (Haaretz). His comments came after U.S. President Trump said at a joint press conference with Netanyahu that he supports both one- and two-state solutions to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict (Reuters).
September 27, 2018
Two Dead After Israeli Troops Fire on Protesters
Israeli forces opened fire during a demonstration in the northern Gaza Strip yesterday, killing two Palestinian protesters and injuring forty-six. The Israeli military indicated that it had confronted people allegedly tampering with the border fence (Reuters).
September 19, 2018
Palestinians File New Claim Against Israel at ICC
The Palestine Liberation Organization filed a new request for the International Criminal Court to investigate Israel’s planned demolition of a West Bank village, PLO Secretary-General Saeb Erekat said yesterday. The move came a day after U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton threatened to sanction the ICC if it targets the United States or its allies (Associated Press).
September 12, 2018
U.S. to Close Palestinian Office in DC
National Security Advisor John Bolton is expected today to announce the closing of the Palestinian Liberation Organization’s office in Washington over its alleged unwillingness to negotiate with Israel. Palestinian envoy Husam Zomlot said early today that U.S.-Palestinian relations are at a “historic low” (Wall Street Journal).
September 10, 2018
Israel Approves New Settlement Homes in the West Bank
Israel’s governing body in the West Bank approved the construction of 1,015 new residences in Jewish settlements there. Some six hundred thousand Israelis live in settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem (Associated Press).
August 23, 2018
Israel Reopens Kerem Shalom Crossing with Gaza
Israel reopened the Kerem Shalom cargo crossing with Gaza in response to a period of relative calm. Israel also restored the fishing zone off Gaza’s coast to seventeen kilometers (BBC).
August 15, 2018
Israeli Air Strikes Hit Gaza
Israel carried out strikes on 150 targets in Gaza overnight after militants fired 180 rockets into southern Israel; three Palestinians were killed in the strikes (Haaretz).
August 9, 2018
Israeli Military Kills Two Hamas Militants in Gaza
The Israeli military said it killed two members of the al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas, in response to fire from Gaza (Haaretz).
August 8, 2018
Israel and Gaza Truce Talks Underway
Israel said the focus for truce talks was on a proposal to ease its blockade of Gaza in exchange for a cessation of hostilities by Hamas militants (Reuters).
August 6, 2018
Israeli Military Strikes Incendiary Kite Launch Site in Gaza
Israel’s Air Force struck a cell in northern Gaza yesterday from where Palestinians launched flaming kites. Earlier, Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman said two days without border violence, incendiary kites, or rockets are necessary before Gaza crossings will be reopened (Jerusalem Post). Separately, Israeli soldiers fatally shot a Palestinian teenager during an overnight raid in Dheisheh refugee camp in the West Bank (Al Jazeera).
July 23, 2018
Hamas to Gradually Decrease Incendiary Kite Attacks on Israel
Hamas will gradually decrease the launching of flaming kites from the Gaza Strip into southern Israel, according to Palestinian media (Times of Israel).
July 18, 2018
Israel Adds More Restrictions to Gaza Border Crossing
Israel said it will further restrict the Kerem Shalom crossing into Gaza to allow only basic food items and medicines, cutting off the strip’s access to fuel, after a rocket was fired into southern Israel. Egypt announced it would temporarily close its Rafah crossing into Gaza (Ynet).
July 17, 2018
Gaza Cease-Fire Appears to Halt Weekend Fighting
Israel carried out dozens of air strikes in Gaza, killing at least two people, while militants fired rockets across the border on Saturday. The two sides announced a cease-fire later that day that appeared to hold through the rest of the weekend (Reuters).
July 16, 2018
UN Warns Israel Over Ban on Goods Into Gaza
Israel halted the flow of all commercial goods except humanitarian supplies, such as food and medicine, into the Gaza Strip via its Kerem Shalom crossing. A top UN envoy for the Middle East urged Israeli officials on Tuesday to reverse the decision (Jerusalem Post).
July 11, 2018
Israel Closes Crossing Between Israel and Gaza
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered an immediate closure of the primary cargo crossing between Israel and the Gaza Strip in response to incendiary kites and balloons launched into Israel by Palestinians (Associated Press).
July 9, 2018
Former Ambassadors Call to Restore Palestinian Aid
Seven former U.S. ambassadors to the United Nations called on Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to restore U.S. funding to the UN Relief and Works Agency, which provides health care, education, and food to Palestinian refugees (Reuters).
July 3, 2018
Rockets Launched From Gaza Into Israel
The Israeli military said at least twelve rockets had been fired from Gaza into southern Israel today, following an Israeli strike on a Hamas positions after dozens of fires were started by militants launching incendiary kites (Associated Press).
June 27, 2018
Israel Strikes Hamas Targets Following Rocket Attacks from Gaza
Israeli warplanes struck Hamas positions in Gaza after Palestinian militants fired dozens of rockets and mortars at southern communities (Associated Press).
June 20, 2018
Israeli Aircraft Strike Hamas Targets in Gaza Strip
Israeli aircraft hit several Hamas targets in the Gaza Strip in response to Palestinian arson attacks over the weekend. Palestinian militants fired three rockets at southern Israel from the Gaza Strip earlier today, and Israeli army gunfire killed a Palestinian man when a group of Palestinians tried to breach the Gaza border fence (Haaretz).
June 18, 2018
Rights Group Says Israel May Have Committed War Crimes in Gaza
Human Rights Watch says that Israel’s use of lethal force against Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip may constitute war crimes, ahead of an emergency UN General Assembly meeting to vote on a resolution condemning Israel’s “excessive use of force” (Associated Press).
June 13, 2018
U.S. to Oppose UN Resolution on Palestinian Protections
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said she will veto a Kuwait-drafted Security Council resolution that calls for providing protections to Palestinians in Gaza after more than one hundred Palestinians were killed by Israeli forces in recent weeks (France24).
June 1, 2018
Dozens of Rockets, Mortars Fired into Israel
Militants in the Gaza Strip fired more than seventy rockets and mortars into Israel yesterday, injuring seven people; the Israeli military responded with airstrikes in the Gaza Strip that it said targeted training camps used by militant groups Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (Washington Post).
May 30, 2018
Gaza Protests Resume Following Yesterday’s Bloodshed
Protests by Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza that swelled yesterday continued today, Nakba Day, marking the Palestinian exodus that accompanied Israeli independence; at least sixty people were killed by Israeli forces yesterday (Guardian).
May 15, 2018
U.S. Opens Jerusalem Embassy Amid Gaza Violence
More than fifty Palestinians were killed by Israeli forces during mass protests in Gaza, as U.S. officials opened the new U.S. embassy in Jerusalem. The Gaza Health Ministry reported more than 2,400 people have been injured in the Nakba Day demonstrations, which are also protesting the U.S. move (Washington Post).
May 14, 2018
Trump, Pence to Skip Jerusalem Embassy Opening
State Department officials, presidential advisors Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, and Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt will attend the ceremony to open the new U.S. embassy in Israel next week (Jerusalem Post).
May 8, 2018
Two Palestinians Killed In Fourth Week of Protest
Two Palestinians were killed and a dozen injured by Israeli troops as they were approaching the Gaza-Israel border fence today, Palestinian health officials said. The protest, pushing demands for Palestinian refugees to regain ancestral homes, reached its halfway mark this week (Reuters).
April 20, 2018
More Injuries Reported as Gaza Protests Continue
One Palestinian was killed and nearly two hundred others were reportedly injured during clashes with Israeli security forces today the Gaza border fence, in the third week of ongoing protests. Thirty-one Palestinians have been killed and hundreds more injured during the demonstrations (Reuters).
April 13, 2018
Palestinian Reportedly Killed in Israeli Airstrike
Hours after an explosive device detonated near an Israeli army vehicle along the Gaza-Israel border, Israel bombed Hamas military targets in the southern Gaza Strip killing one, Palestinian authorities said (Associated Press).
April 12, 2018
ICC Chief Calls for End to Gaza Violence
Chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Fatou Bensouda, said crimes committed in Palestine could be subject to an investigation by her office after dozens of Palestinians were reported killed and hundreds were wounded in recent days by Israeli gunfire (Guardian).
April 9, 2018
Forty Reported Injured in Gaza Border Protests
The Palestinian Health Ministry reported forty injured and one dead after clashes between Palestinian protesters and Israeli security forces erupted again in West Bank cities (Haaretz). UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned Israel to exercise “extreme caution” in its response to continuing demonstrations in Gaza (Guardian).
April 6, 2018
U.S. Blocks UN Inquiry into Gaza Protest Deaths
A UN Security Council statement that would have called for an independent probe into Gazan protesters’ deaths on Friday was blocked by the United States (Voice of America). At least seventeen Palestinians were killed by Israeli gunfire during border demonstrations, and Palestinians have planned protests to continue through May (CNN).
April 2, 2018
Fifteen Dead as Gaza Protests Begin
Fifteen people were killed and hundreds were wounded as clashes erupted near the Israeli border on the first day of a six-week Land Day protest, according to officials in Gaza. The Israeli military reports 17,000 Palestinians were gathered to protest at several points along the Gaza Strip fence (Washington Post).
March 30, 2018
Ahead of Demonstrations, Israel Deploys Snipers Along the Gaza Border
The Israeli military deployed more than one hundred snipers along the Gaza border before the start tomorrow of the annual six-week long “Land Day” demonstration. The protest, supported by several Palestinian political parties including Hamas, calls for the right of return for Palestinian refugees (Al Jazeera).
March 29, 2018
Palestinian Killed in Jerusalem After Stabbing Israeli
A Palestinian was killed by police yesterday in Jerusalem’s Old City after stabbing an Israeli and seriously wounding him, said Israel’s Shin Bet security service. On Friday, a Palestinian drove his car into a group of Israeli soldiers in the West Bank, killing two (Associated Press).
March 19, 2018
$100 Million Pledged for UN Relief Agency for Palestine
The UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine refugees received pledges of nearly $100 million in new funding from other donors after the United States cut $300 million of the $365 million reportedly pledged for 2018. The agency faces a $446 million gap in financing this year (Associated Press).
March 15, 2018
White House Hosts Meeting on Gaza
Nineteen nations including Egypt, Israel, Jordan, and several Gulf states participated in talks in the U.S. capital yesterday to address the humanitarian crisis in Gaza. The Palestinian Authority boycotted the meeting (Reuters).
March 14, 2018
Bombing in Gaza Targets Palestinian PM
Seven people were injured when an explosive went off as a convoy carrying Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah entered the Gaza Strip through an Israeli checkpoint (Al Jazeera).
March 13, 2018
Palestinian Leader Calls for Peace Conference
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and U.S. envoy to the United Nations Nikki Haley, at the UN Security Council yesterday, traded accusations of obstructing peace talks on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Abbas called for an international peace summit to be held by mid-2018, under UN, not U.S., sponsorship (Washington Post).
February 21, 2018
Israeli Settler Leader Says West Bank Settlements Grew Rapidly in 2017
The population in Jewish settlements in the West Bank grew twice as fast as Israel’s overall population last year, according to a settler organization–backed report. The founder of the report said that the internationally backed two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is “over” (Associated Press).
February 20, 2018
Pence Says U.S. Embassy to Move to Jerusalem by End of 2019
In a speech to the Israeli parliament today, U.S. Vice President Mike Pence reiterated the Trump administration’s plans to move the U.S. embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, saying that the new embassy would open before the end of next year (Reuters).
January 22, 2018
U.S. Withholds $65 Million in Aid to Palestinians
The United States announced yesterday that it will provide only $60 million of an expected $125 million to the UN Relief and Works Agency, which supports schools and health centers for displaced Palestinians. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said he was “very concerned” about the U.S. decision (Wall Street Journal).
January 17, 2018
Palestinian Leader Says Israel ‘Killed’ Oslo Accord
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, in a Sunday speech, rejected the United States as a mediator in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and said that Israel has “killed” the 1993 Oslo Accords (New York Times). A top decision-making body of the Palestinian Liberation Organization voted yesterday to suspend recognition of Israel and back an international movement to boycott the country (Middle East Eye).
January 16, 2018
Israel’s Knesset Votes to Tighten Control Over Jerusalem
Israel’s legislature passed an amendment today that increases the number of votes needed to cede control over any section of Jerusalem to a “foreign party,” potentially complicating any future peace deal that involves handing over territory to Palestinians (Reuters).
January 2, 2018
Second Nation to Move Embassy in Israel
Guatemala announced it will follow the United States’ lead and move its embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem (New York Times).
December 26, 2017
128 States Vote Against U.S. Jerusalem Position at UN
The UN General Assembly backed a nonbinding resolution calling any decision on the status of Jerusalem “null and void,” following the United States’ announcement that it would recognize the city as Israel’s capital (BBC).
December 22, 2017
U.S. Vetoes UN Resolution on Jerusalem
The United States used its veto in a UN Security Council vote yesterday that would have rejected a move by any state to change the status of Jerusalem (BBC).
December 19, 2017
Security Council to Vote on Jerusalem Resolution
The UN Security Council will vote today on a resolution drafted by Egypt that declares actions by any country to alter the status of Jerusalem “null and void;” the United States is expected to veto the resolution (Reuters). Four Palestinians were killed in clashes with Israeli security forces last Friday, as thousands demonstrated across Gaza and the West Bank (Washington Post).
December 18, 2017
Pence Postpones Trip to Israel
U.S. Vice President Mike Pence has postponed an upcoming visit to Israel amid growing protests over the Trump administration’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. The Palestinian Authority said it is “no longer coordinating” with Pence and the city of Bethlehem announced it will not accept the vice president (Haaretz).
December 14, 2017
Islamic Nations Rebuke U.S., Israel Over Jerusalem
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has condemned Israel and the United States following the U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as the Israeli capital last week and threatened to cut diplomatic ties with Israel at a meeting of the Organization for Islamic Cooperation in Istanbul yesterday (Al Jazeera). Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas rejected a role for the United States as a mediator for the region, saying the decision by U.S. President Donald J. Trump was a “crime” (Guardian).
December 13, 2017
Protests From Europe to Asia Over Jerusalem Recognition
Demonstrators in Egypt, India, Indonesia, Morocco, Pakistan, and Turkey took to the streets over the weekend to denounce the United States’ recent decision to recognize the city of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital (Al Jazeera).
December 11, 2017
Hamas Calls for Uprising Over Jerusalem Recognition
Backlash over U.S. President Donald J. Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital intensified today, as clashes between Israeli soldiers and protesters broke out in the city of Ramallah and other areas in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. The Gaza-based militant group Hamas called for a new uprising and the Palestinian Authority backed a general strike in East Jerusalem and the West Bank (Washington Post).
December 7, 2017
U.S. to Recognize Jerusalem as Israeli Capital
U.S. President Donald J. Trump is expected today to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, going against seven decades of U.S. policy toward the region. The administration called the move a “recognition of reality” that the city is the seat of Israel’s government (New York Times).
December 6, 2017
Jordan Warns U.S. Against Tel Aviv Embassy Move
Jordan’s foreign minister said he has warned the United States that recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel by moving the U.S. embassy there would “fuel tension” and jeopardize peace efforts in the region. Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas said such a move would be “unacceptable” (Guardian).
December 4, 2017
Israel Approves Major Settlement Expansion
Israel has approved 176 new homes for Jewish settlers in East Jerusalem. The additional housing would make the settlement, Nof Zion, the largest in the city. Palestinians seek East Jerusalem as the capital of a future state (BBC).
October 26, 2017
Hamas, Fatah Announce Reconciliation Deal
The Gaza-based militant group Hamas and Western-backed ruling Fatah party have signed a reconciliation agreement in Cairo, a move that could end a decade of fissure between the Palestinian factions. The groups are expected to reveal more details at a news conference today, though the deal reportedly includes integrating Hamas officials into Palestinian Authority ministries, rebuilding Gaza’s police forces, and negotiating management of the strip’s crossings (BBC).
October 12, 2017
Palestinian Gunman Kills Three Israelis
A Palestinian gunman shot and killed three members of Israel’s security forces at a settlement northwest of Jerusalem (BBC).
September 26, 2017
Hamas Invites Palestinian Authority Back to Gaza Strip
The militant group Hamas invited West Bank-based Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas yesterday to send authorities to the Gaza Strip to resume control there as Hamas disbands the committee that has controlled the area in recent months (Associated Press).
September 20, 2017
Hamas Says Ready to Reconcile With Palestinian Authority
The Palestinian militant group Hamas announced that it is ready to accept conditions to reconcile with the West Bank-based ruling Fatah party after a decade of division. Hamas said it would dissolve its administrative commission ruling the Gaza Strip, hold elections, and begin direct talks with Fatah (Financial Times).
September 18, 2017
Chinese Ambassador Pushes for Two-State Solution
The Chinese ambassador to the United Nations urged member states to back a Chinese plan for Israeli-Palestinian peace that includes a two-state solution based on 1967 borders. Chinese President Xi Jinping met Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas in Beijing in July to outline the plan (Voice of America).
August 1, 2017
Jerusalem Mosque Officials Lift Boycott
Religious authorities of Jerusalem’s al-Aqsa Mosque called on worshippers to return to the holy site for prayers after Israel removed gates and security cameras it installed in mid-July, measures that led to protests by Palestinians (CNN).
July 27, 2017
Israel Removes Al-Aqsa Metal Detectors
Israel said it will remove metal detectors it had placed at Jerusalem’s al-Aqsa Mosque following days of protests against the new security measure. The mosque’s director said security cameras that were also installed following an attack at the holy site earlier this month remain in place (Al Jazeera).
July 25, 2017
Israel-Jordan Tensions Rise After Amman Attack
Two Jordanian men were killed and an Israeli wounded in a confrontation at the Israeli embassy in Amman. Israel said one of the men attacked an Israeli guard with a screwdriver, and that the guard shot the assailant and a bystander. Jordanian police demanded to interrogate the guard, whom Israel says is protected by diplomatic immunity (BBC).
July 24, 2017
Palestinians Angered by New Security Measure at Temple Mount
Violent protests have erupted in East Jerusalem after the Israeli government installed metal detectors at the Temple Mount. The government implemented the new security measures after an attack at the holy site on July 14 (Reuters).
July 20, 2017
UN: Conditions in Gaza Deteriorating
A new report by the United Nations says conditions in Gaza have become “more and more wretched” after a decade of Hamas rule and blockades by Israel and Egypt (Washington Post).
July 12, 2017
Kushner Meets With Israeli, Palestinian Leaders
U.S. presidential advisor Jared Kushner met first with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and then Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas to discuss restarting peace negotiations, which halted in 2014 (Al Jazeera).
June 22, 2017
UN: Power Crisis in Gaza May Lead to Total Collapse of Services
The Palestinian Authority in the West Bank has refused to pay for electricity in the Gaza Strip. As a result, Israel now supplies Gaza with three hours of electricity, down from four, which may lead to a collapse in basic service, according to the UN humanitarian coordinator for the occupied territories (Al Jazeera)
June 15, 2017
Hamas Lawmakers’ Salaries Suspended in West Bank
Palestinian lawmakers from Hamas in the West Bank said they did not receive their June salaries in a move they suspect originates with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Former inmates in Israeli prisons from Hamas also said they did not receive their monthly stipends controlled by Abbas, who is under pressure from the United States and Israel to cut the payments (Associated Press).
June 5, 2017
Israeli Finance Minister Meets Palestinian PM
Israeli Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon made a rare trip to the West Bank to meet Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah to present proposals as part of a U.S. push for peace in the region. The proposed measures include increasing building permits for Palestinians in the West Bank and developing industrial zones near the cities of Hebron and Jenin (Reuters).
June 1, 2017
Trump Says U.S. Embassy in Israel to Stay in Tel Aviv
President Trump will not move to relocate the U.S. Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Trump has signed a waiver to defer action on an embassy relocation mandated by Congress in 1995 (Washington Post)
June 1, 2017
Trump Meets Abbas in Bethlehem
U.S. President Donald J. Trump met Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas in Bethlehem on the final day of his Middle East tour. A White House schedule referred to Tuesday’s event as a visit to “Palestine;” the United States does not recognize Palestinian statehood and has traditionally referred to the “Palestinian Authority” (Haaretz).
May 23, 2017
Dozens of Hunger-Strikers in Israel Under Medical Watch
Israel placed dozens of the eight hundred and forty-three Palestinian prisoners who have been on a hunger strike for a month under additional medical supervision. U.S. Ambassador David Friedman arrived in Israel on Tuesday to assume his post days before a visit by President Trump (Associate Press).
May 17, 2017
Israel’s Netanyahu Defense Relocating U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem
The office of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu defended possibly relocating its U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, saying such a move would support peace negotiations with Palestinians by correcting a historic injustice” (Haaretz).
May 15, 2017
Israel Moves to Downgrade Arabic as an Official State Language
Israeli ministers approved a bill that would downgrade the Arabic language from an official state language to one of “special status” (Haaretz).
May 8, 2017
Abbas, Trump to Talk Israel-Palestine Peace Efforts
Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas will meet U.S. President Donald J. Trump in Washington following calls by the U.S. administration to restart peace negotiations between Israel and Palestine, which have been stalled since 2014 (Associated Press).
May 3, 2017
Hamas Issues First Charter Since 1988
A new charter issued by Hamas says that it would accept a Palestinian state that includes the territories occupied by Israel since 1967 and that it seeks war with “occupying Zionist aggressors.” The document does not recognize the state of Israel (Guardian).
May 2, 2017
Abbas Pressures Hamas to Cede Gaza
Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas threatened to cut health and education funds to the Gaza strip in order to pressure militant group Hamas to relinquish its control of the area, according to an aide. He will meet President Trump to discuss an Israel-Palestine peace plan (Wall Street Journal).
May 1, 2017
Israeli Minister Claims Damascus Airport Strike
Israel’s intelligence minister said that a strike near the Damascus International Airport against a suspected Hezbollah arms supply point was carried out by Israel (Guardian).
April 27, 2017
Netanyahu Cancels Meeting With German Foreign Minister
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called off a meeting with the visiting German foreign minister after the latter visited an activist group of Israeli veterans who oppose the occupation of Palestinian territories (New York Times).
April 26, 2017
Israel Refuses to Negotiate With Palestinian Strikers
Israel’s public security minister said that Israel has “no reason to negotiate” with the estimated one thousand Palestinian prisoners who are on a hunger strike there. Marwan Barghouti, who is leading the strike, was placed in solitary confinement (Deutsche Welle).
April 18, 2017
Jailed Palestinians Begin Mass Hunger Strike
Over one thousand Palestinian prisoners in Israel are participating in a hunger strike called for by Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti, who received five life sentences in 2004 for alleged murders during the Second Intifada (BBC).
April 17, 2017
Russia Backs West Jerusalem as Israeli Capital
Russia’s foreign ministry announced that it endorses a two-state solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict in which West Jerusalem is the Israeli capital and East Jerusalem the Palestinian capital. Russia had previously supported East Jerusalem as part of a Palestinian state without mentioning the fate of the western part of the city (Radio Free Europe).
April 7, 2017
Hamas Executes Three Palestinians Accused of Working with Israel
Militant group Hamas executed three Palestinians it accused of working with Israel. The executions followed the assassination last month of a senior Hamas commander, which the group blamed on Israel and Gaza “collaborators” (Associated Press).
April 6, 2017
Document Purports to Show Hamas Statehood Terms
A leaked document published by pro-Hezbollah Beirut television channel Al Mayadeen purports to show Hamas would accept a Palestinian state in the Gaza Strip and West Bank as part of a “national consensus formula” (Middle East Eye).
April 4, 2017
Israel Approves First New Settlement in Two Decades
Israel approved the first new West Bank settlement in twenty years to house settlers who were evicted from the Amona settlement, which a court ordered the government remove because it was built on private Palestinian land. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also stated that construction of two thousand additional homes in existing settlements was approved (New York Times).
March 31, 2017
Hamas Announces Gaza-Israel Border Closure
Hamas has announced the closure of the Gaza border with Israel following the murder of senior commander Mazen Faqha. Those with humanitarian cases will be allowed to cross (Al Jazeera).
March 27, 2017
Palestinian Authority Violently Breaks Up Protest
Palestinian Authority security forcefully broke up a peaceful protest, injuring several people. Protestors were demonstrating against the death of youth activist Basil al-Araj (Al Jazeera).
March 13, 2017
Israel Passes Bill to Ban Pro-Boycott Foreigners
Israel’s Knesset approved legislation to forbid granting entry visas or residency rights to foreigners who call for economic, academic, or cultural boycotts of Israel or its West Bank settlements (Haaretz).
March 7, 2017
New Organization to Represent Palestinian Diaspora
Leaders of a conference held in Istanbul announced the creation of a new entity to represent the Palestinian diaspora (Al Jazeera).
February 27, 2017
Netanyahu, Trump Meet as White House Signals Policy Shift
U.S. President Donald J. Trump meets Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Washington before the Israeli leader meets with lawmakers from both parties. A White House official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said the administration believed that a resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict does not need to include a two-state solution, a position that would break from long-standing U.S. policy (New York Times).
February 15, 2017
Hamas Elects New Gaza Leader
Hamas elected Yahya Sinwar, who spent twenty-three years in Israeli prison, as its new chief in Gaza (Al Jazeera).
February 14, 2017
Israeli Parliament Passes Law to Legalize Jewish Settlements on Palestinian Land
The law would retroactively legalize Jewish settlements on privately owned Palestinian land in the West Bank (Haaretz). The bill is expected to be overturned by Israel’s high court (New York Times).
February 7, 2017
White House Says Israeli Settlements ‘May Not Be Helpful’
White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer said that new or expanded Israeli settlements in the West Bank “may not be helpful” in achieving peace, but that the administration does not believe settlements themselves are an impediment (Washington Post).
February 3, 2017
Israeli Police Wounded in Settlement Evacuation
Forty-one police officers and several civilians were reported wounded in an operation to evict about forty families and their supporters from a West Bank settlement ruled illegal for being built on privately owned Palestinian land (Haaretz).
February 2, 2017
Israel Approves Three Thousand Settlement Homes
Israel approved three thousand new housing units in the West Bank, raising the total in the West Bank and East Jerusalem it has announced since the inauguration of President Donald J. Trump to six thousand (New York Times). The announcement came as the Israeli army began to evacuate the several dozen families in the Amona outpost after a court found it was built on private Palestinian land.
February 1, 2017
Israel Approves New Settlements
Israel approved hundreds of new settlement homes in East Jerusalem (BBC).
January 23, 2017
Soldier Convicted for Killing Palestinian Assailant
An Israeli soldier who fatally shot a wounded Palestinian assailant last year was found guilty of manslaughter, the first conviction in twelve years for an Israeli soldier over actions while in uniform (Middle East Eye). The judges ruled that the soldier killed the assailant without reason.
January 4, 2017
Netanyahu Rebuffs Kerry Speech as ‘Biased’
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rejected a speech by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry that criticized Israel’s settlements in the West Bank. In the speech, Kerry defended (New York Times) the Obama administration’s choice to not veto a UN resolution condemning Israel’s West Bank settlements, saying it was driven by a hope to save Israel from “the most extreme elements” in its own government.
December 29, 2016
Palestinian Stabs Two Israeli Policemen
A Palestinian man wielding a screwdriver stabbed and lightly wounded two Israeli police officers before being shot and killed. Officers shot the attacker, who was taken to an Israeli hospital and later died of his wounds, police said (Associated Press).
December 14, 2016
U.S. Secretary of State Kerry Criticizes Israel Over Expanding Settlements
Secretary of State John F. Kerry said that Israel is “heading to a place of danger” because settlement growth is eroding chances for a two-state solution and peace with the Palestinians, though he said the United States will continue to veto U.N. resolutions that it deems as reflecting anti-Israel bias. Kerry effectively laid out some details that he said already have been discussed regarding how a Palestinian state could exist while Israel’s security is ensured (Washington Post).
December 7, 2016
Palestinian Leaders Meet in Doha
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas met with leaders of the Gaza-based Hamas in Doha to discuss mending the political rift between the Gaza Strip and West Bank and establishing a consensus government, PA media said (Middle East Eye). The two areas have been politically split since Hamas seized Gaza a year after winning parliamentary elections.
October 28, 2016
Two Israelis Killed in Jerusalem
A Palestinian gunman, identified as a resident of East Jerusalem, fired at civilians from a moving car near a light rail stop opposite Israel’s national police headquarters, killingtwo Israelis. (New York Times).
October 10, 2016
Activist Flotilla Attempts to Reach Gaza
A Gaza-bound flotilla with women activists, including a Nobel Peace Prize laureate and a retired U.S. army colonel, was intercepted by Israeli authorities and redirected to the Israeli port of Ashdod (Haaretz).
October 6, 2016
ICC Delegation Visits Israel and Palestinian Territories
The six-day trip is the first to the region by officials from the prosecutor’s office at the International Criminal Court since the Gaza war. The team will travel to Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Ramallah to gather information for an initial probe into alleged war crimes, at the request of the Palestinians (Al Jazeera).
October 5, 2016
Palestinian Court Orders Elections in West Bank
The Palestinian high court ordered municipal elections in Fatah-run West Bank, but not in the Hamas-run Gaza Strip (AFP). Fatah and Hamas have not contested an election since 2006
October 4, 2016
Israeli Founding Leader and Nobel Laureate Shimon Peres Dies at 93
Shimon Peres, former Prime Minister and President of Israel, has died at age ninety-three. Mr. Peres headed the creation of Israel’s defense industry though later won the Nobel Peace Prize for his role in the Oslo accords (BBC).
September 28, 2016
Israel Legalizes “Pirate Outposts”
A new report says the Israeli government has retroactively legalized many so-called “pirate outposts” of Jewish settlers in the West Bank. Approximately one hundred outposts were constructed over the past two decades without government authorization (New York Times).
August 30, 2016
Israel Completes Investigation of 2014 Strike on Gaza School
The Israeli military cleared itself of wrongdoing and closed its investigation into a strike in 2014 that killed about ten civilians in Gaza who took shelter in a UN school). The military said that six criminal investigations are still open relating to incidents during the Gaza incursion (New York Times.
August 25, 2016
Palestinian Leaders to File Complaint Against Britain
Palestinian foreign minister Riyad al-Malki sought support from the Arab League for a lawsuit against Britain for its 1917 Balfour Declaration that established a national home for Jewish people in Palestine (AFP).
July 27, 2016
Egypt’s Foreign Minister Visits Israel
Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem, where he offered to help revive peace negotiations with Palestinians and said a two-state solution was “not far-fetched” (Reuters). The visit is the first of its kind in nearly a decade; Egypt and Jordan are the only two Arab nations to have signed peace accords with Israel (Al Jazeera).
July 11, 2016
Classified Procedures Permit Israeli Police to Shoot at Strone Throwers
An Israeli court released portions of police regulations approved last December by the country’s attorney general which allow Israeli law enforcement to fire live bullets at someone throwing stones using a slingshot (Haaretz). The classified documents were released in response to a petition by a legal aid NGO (Jerusalem Post).
July 5, 2016