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Source: Division for Palestinian Rights (DPR)
31 March 2015


Division for Palestinian Rights

Chronological Review of Events Relating to the
Question of Palestine

Monthly media monitoring review

March 2015

Monthly highlights

• The Special Rapporteur calls on Israel to investigate the killing of more than 1,500 civilians during the 2014 Gaza war. (3 March)

• The Arab League intends to submit to the UN Security Council a new draft proposal calling for ending the Israeli occupation of Palestine. (9 March)

• The Palestinian Government says it was putting an emergency budget in place due to the absence of international aid and Israel withholding tax revenues. (17 March)

• Knesset elections results in 30 seats for Likud and and 24 seats for Zionist Union (Herzog and Livni) (18 March)

• Israeli authorities refuse access for a working group of the European Parliament Delegation into Gaza. (18 March)

• The British Deputy Prime Minister says if PM Netanyahu does not backtrack from remarks regarding two-State solution, Britain would recognise a Palestinian State. (18 March)

US President Obama tells PM Netanyahu that the US was reassessing its approach to Israeli-Palestinian peace. (19 March)

• Israel’s army opens six criminal investigations into soldiers’ actions during the 50-day fighting in the Gaza Strip. (20 March)

• Israeli and US representatives were absent from the UN Human Rights Council session on Gaza. (23 March)

• US President Obama expresses doubts about the prospect of a peace agreement under PM Netanyahu. (24 March)

• Amnesty International says Palestinian armed groups committed war crimes by firing indiscriminate rockets and mortars towards Israel during the war in Gaza, . (26 March)

• The long-running conflict with Israel claimed the lives of more Palestinian civilians in 2014 than any year since 1967. (26 March)

• French Foreign Minister says France will introduce a Security Council resolution that could present a negotiating framework to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. (27 March)

• The US, the EU and the Quartet welcome Israel’s decision to transfer Palestinian tax funds. (27 March)

• The US may push a renewed discussion of the Arab (Saudi) initiative to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. (31 March)


1

The IDF called up 13,000 reservists, sending 3,000 to a surprise training mission in the West Bank in preparation for a possible escalation of violence. (PNN)

Israeli troops shot and injured two young Palestinian men in the Dheisheh refugee camp south of Bethlehem during clashes following an arrest raid. (Ma’an News Agency)

Hamas does not seek a clash with Israel at this time but is striving to double its strength for future conflicts, the leader of Hamas’ military wing, Marwan Issa, said. According to Issa, Hamas continues to manufacture rockets and is trying to obtain more weapons and ammunition. But Hamas and other factions fear that the Egyptian army might attack. (Haaretz)

Israeli authorities ordered an 83-year-old Palestinian and his family to voluntarily evacuate their home in the East Jerusalem neighbourhood of Sheikh Jarrah in compliance with a final Supreme Court decision. Their rented house is targeted by settlers for eviction. (Ma’an News Agency)

A Palestinian court postponed its verdict in the trial of exiled ex-Fatah leader Mohammed Dahlan, who is being tried in absentia on corruption charges, an AFP correspondent reported. (AFP)

Israeli Ofer military court approved the administrative detention order against eight Palestinian prisoners for 6 months, said the Palestinian Prisoner’s Club in a statement. (WAFA)

US Secretary of State John Kerry is exerting pressure on President Abbas not to make any “fateful decisions” regarding Israel before its upcoming election, Palestinian sources said. (Jerusalem Post)

King Abdullah II of Jordan said that “if we did not solve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict... our hands would be restricted while we are fighting terrorism.” (Middle East Monitor)

2

Israeli naval boats opened fire at fishermen off the coast of northern Gaza, residents said. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Israeli army flooded sewage into Palestinian-owned olive-planted land in the village of Teqoa near Bethlehem during a military exercise, according to a local source. (WAFA)

Dozens of Palestinian Bedouins from the al-Jahalin community in eastern Abu Dis have received orders from Israeli forces to demolish their homes themselves. (Ma’an News Agency)

The builder of the first planned Palestinian city in the West Bank says Israel has agreed to connect Rawabi to its water grid, ending months of costly delays. (Associated Press)

“One of the first important steps will be filing a complaint against Israel at the ICC on April 1 over the Gaza war and settlement activity,” Mohammed Shtayyeh, a senior advisor to President Abbas told AP. (Associated Press)

Head of the Palestinian Detainees Committee Issa Qaraqe said that the detainees, held in different Israeli prisons are heading towards escalated protest measures that include total disobedience, and hunger strikes. (IMEMC)

According to a report by the Hussam Association of Palestinian Prisoners and Ex-Prisoners, Israeli forces arrested some 285 Palestinians, 30 of which children under 18, in February. The majority of the Palestinians, especially women and children, were detained for hours or days before their release. (PNN)

US Secretary of State Kerry told the Human Rights Council its “obsession with Israel actually risks undermining the credibility of the entire organization,” saying the US would continue to oppose any attempt to “delegitimize” or otherwise unfairly target Israel in any part of the UN system. (Haaretz)

UN Special Coordinator Robert Serry said in a statement there is a need for a long-term “reconstruction hudna”. He had been urging counterparts in Gaza to commit themselves to a multi-year freeze to military activities above and below ground. They are willing to consider this, provided the other parties respond in further opening crossings. He urgently called on the National Consensus Government, Palestinian factions, Israel, Egypt, the international community and donors, to change their failed policies and adopt a “Gaza first” strategy. (UNSCO)

Eighty percent of Palestinian stores in areas controlled by the PA have stopped selling products by six major Israeli food companies. (israelnationalnews.com)

As Prime Minister Netanyahu’s controversial speech at the US Congress nears, American Muslims for Palestine launched a new ad campaign across Washington, DC criticizing Netanyahu’s actions in Palestine and urging the US to end aid to Israel. (Ma’an News Agency)

Mohammad Mustafa, Deputy Prime Minister of the Palestinian Unity Government and the Minister of National Economy, warned that the Israeli withholding of Palestinian tax revenue dues would lead to full security deterioration in the Palestinian territories. (Xinhua)

Hamas said that the decision of an Egyptian court to brand it as a terrorist group makes Egypt unfit as a mediator in Palestinian issues. (Xinhua)

Israeli security forces arrested 68 Palestinians during a campaign against Palestinian illegal workers who enter Israel without a working permit. (Palestine News Network)

Three Israeli citizens have been charged on suspicion of knowingly supplying raw materials to Gaza that the Israeli authorities said were destined for Hamas, to use in building up its military infrastructure. Six Palestinian businessmen have also been indicted in connection with a suspected smuggling ring, according to Shin Bet. (The New York Times)

3

Israeli forces opened gunfire on Palestinian farmers as they were trying to access their farmlands near the border, to the east of Gaza City. (WAFA)

Israeli troops shot and injured a young Palestinian man during clashes in the northern West Bank town of Qabatiya west of Jenin. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces detained a Palestinian student near Hebron, on a charge of having a geometric compass in his schoolbag. (Palestinian News Network)

Israel banned Gaza PFLP leaders from attending a PLO meeting in Ramallah. The PFLP leaders were scheduled to join a two-day meeting of the PLO’s Central Council on 4 March to decide on how to carry on with security cooperation with Israel after the Israeli withholding of Palestinian tax revenue dues. (Xinhua)

High-level discussions are under way to more closely involve Arab States in the work of the Quartet and reinvigorate the four-member group. Rather than formally expanding the Quartet’s membership, the idea is to have more frequent top-level meetings with at least Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Egypt to ensure the region is better engaged, according to senior diplomats based in the Middle East and Europe. (Reuters)

Federica Mogherini, the European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, is expected to appoint a special envoy to the Middle East in the coming days. (Reuters)

Gaza’s only power plant is due to shut down by the end of this week as donor funding for fuel in the coastal territory has run out, officials said. The power plant had been using a Qatari grant to pay for diesel fuel to maintain operations. Gaza’s sole power station, which was damaged during the war, is struggling with a severe lack of fuel and is only able to supply the enclave with six hours of power per day. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Israeli Civil Administration ordered Palestinians residing in the Khillet al-Raheb area in the “E-1” corridor east of Jerusalem to demolish their homes. Should they fail to do so, the homes will be demolished by the civil administration at the families’ expense. (IMEMC)

The chairman of the PA’s committee of prisoners’ affairs, Issa Qaraqe, said in a statement that the PA official organizations which work in support of Palestinian prisoners jailed in Israel have decided to stop paying fines which Israeli military courts impose on prisoners “in compensation to Israeli soldiers or settlers attacked during Palestinian resistance activities.” (Ma’an News Agency)

Extremists affiliated to “Groups for The Temple Compound” have called on supporters to participate in breaking into the Al-Aqsa Mosque on 4 and 5 March to celebrate the Jewish festival of Purim. (Palestinian News Network)

Israeli officials prevented ten PLO officials from entering the West Bank via the Erez crossing with Gaza, officials said. The group was scheduled to attend the PLO’s Central Council meeting today. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Palestinian Foreign Ministry called on Secretary Kerry to stop dealing with Israel as if it were a State “above the law.” The ministry said that Kerry’s remarks defending Israel contradicted the principles and mission of the Human Rights Council. (The Jerusalem Post)

Undercover Israeli officers arrested a Palestinian teenager during clashes between Israeli troops and Palestinian youth in Silwan. (Ma’an News Agency)

14 tractors escorted by over 50 Israeli police vehicles destroyed thousands of acres of wheat, barley and other cereal crops in the Palestinian Bedouin village of Rakhama, locals reported. (Ma’an News Agency)

Four armoured Israeli military bulldozers, and a tank, advanced by a few hundred into an area east of the Rafah district. (IMEMC)

Hamas Political Bureau member Moussa Abu Marzouq called on the President Abbas to issue an edict setting up election dates. Abu Marzouq urged the Central Council of the PLO to call for a meeting between all the factions who signed the reconciliation accord to heal the rift once and for all. (Palestinian Information Centre)

Makarim Wibisono, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the occupied territories, in his first report to the Human Rights Council called on Israel to investigate the killing of more than 1,500 Palestinian civilians, one third of them children, during the 2014 Gaza war, and to make the findings public. (un.org)

4

Israeli forces detained eleven Palestinians, including four minors, and summoned three others from Hebron, Jenin and Ramallah districts, said security sources and the Palestinian Prisoners’ Club (PPC). Israeli forces raided the Arroub refugee camp to the north of Hebron, where they proceeded to detain four minors after breaking into and ransacking their families’ houses. (WAFA)

The PLO’s 124-member Central Council is scheduled to hold a meeting in Ramallah today to discuss the future of relations between the PA and Israel. Sources said that the PLO representatives would discuss the possibility of suspending or cutting security, economic and political ties with Israel. On the eve of the meeting, Secretary of State John Kerry phoned President Abbas and urged him to refrain from taking “harsh” decisions before the upcoming Israeli elections. (The Jerusalem Post)

The Palestinian Ministry of Finance announced that public servants will only receive 60 per cent of their salaries for February, for the third month in a row, as Israel continues to withhold the PA tax revenues. The Government’s treasury sought loans from local banks to be able to meet its financial obligations towards employees. (WAFA)

Israeli settlers entered the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound through the Moroccan Gate protected by armed security, for the Purim Jewish Holiday. (Ma’an News Agency)

Britain’s advertising watchdog banned an Israeli Government’s tourism advertisement for suggesting that the Old City of Jerusalem was part of Israel. (AFP)

The Al-Aqsa Foundation for Islamic Waqf and Heritage published a report criticizing the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court ruling which ostensibly backs claims that Jews are allowed to pray in the al-Aqsa Mosque compound, saying that the move aims to legalize Jewish control over the Islamic site. (WAFA)

A fishing boat sustained damage after Israeli naval ships opened fire at it off the northern Gaza Strip coast. Fishermen were fishing within the designated fishing zone, which is six nautical miles from the shore. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israel will increase from 5 to 10 million cubic meters the amount of water provided to the Gaza Strip annually, as announced by Maj. Gen. Yoav Mordechai, the commander of COGAT. The director of the Palestinian Water Authority in Gaza said he had not received an official notification of the Israeli announcement. (Associated Press)

Islamic Jihad has offered Egypt an initiative on administering the Rafah crossing. Its Secretary-General Ramadan Shallah had visited Cairo on 1 March to discuss with Egyptian officials the situation at the border, as Egypt reportedly demanded that Hamas staff stop all contacts with the Egyptian side, stressing it would only deal with the PA on this issue, sources said. (Ahram Online)

Over 5,000 women from across Israel gathered in front of the Knesset to demand the resumption of peace negotiations with Palestinian leaders. The demonstration was organized by an NGO called Women Wage Peace. (The Jerusalem Post)

President Abbas told the PLO’s Central Council to reconsider the PA’s functions to ensure that adherence to treaties shall not be unilateral. He was also quoted as stating: “Peaceful popular resistance is the best means to confront the occupation… We won’t accept a Jewish State and the Islamization of the struggle in the Middle East… We are also against a temporary [Palestinian] State.” Abbas was also quoted as saying: “As soon as Hamas sends me a written official approval, I will immediately issue a decree calling for elections.” He said talks with Israel were still on the table. “We are not interfering [in Israeli elections], or saying who we’d like to see or who we’d not like to see”, he said. “This is the third month in a row that we’re taking loans from the banks” to pay salaries, Abbas noted, adding that a “political solution” was the best way to end the deadlock. (AFP, The Jerusalem Post, WAFA)

5

A spokesperson of the Popular Committee against the Wall and Settlements in Beit Ummar said soldiers seized lawyer Yasser Mohammad Ekhlayyel, a former political prisoner who spent ten years in Israeli prisons. (IMEMC)

Two Palestinian fishermen were wounded as Israeli naval gunboats opened fire at a group of boats off the coast of the northern Gaza Strip, said the speaker of the fishermen’s union. Israel’s navy arrested three other fishermen. (Ma’an News Agency)

Prime Minister Netanyahu has called off a planned 10 March visit to Hebron which was to be a part of his election campaign, following advice from the Shin Bet security service. (IMEMC)

Unidentified assailants threw flammable material at the door of a Fatah leader’s house in Gaza, witnesses said. (Ma’an News Agency)

Residents of the Al-Mugheer village east of Ramallah said that Israeli settlers had torched two cars and sprayed hate slogans on walls calling for the killing of Palestinians. (PNN)

The Gaza Strip’s sole power plant was shut down as Qatari-donated fuel supplies finally ran out, the Gaza power authority said. (Ma’an News Agency)

The 92,000 Palestinians who worked in Israel or in settlements in 2014 make on average NIS 198 ($50) per day, while their peers in the Palestinian territories make just 45 per cent of that. Some 64 per cent of Palestinian workers in 2014 had permits, while the rest did not, a Bank of Israel report said. (The Jerusalem Post)

The Palestinian Embassy in South Africa issued a press statement criticizing a “self-proclaimed activist” from Jerusalem, Bassem Eid, who arrived in South Africa and whose agenda is seemingly “to undermine the current nationwide 11th international Palestine solidarity campaign ‘Israeli Apartheid Week’”. (WAFA)

In an interview with the Palestinian Embassy in South Africa, and the Palestinian delegation participating in the “Israeli Apartheid Week”, Archbishop Desmond Tutu said that the “West committed the Holocaust against the Jews in Europe, while the Palestinians are still paying a historic price for it.” (WAFA)

An online platform that aims to open up access to information for Palestinians and increase accountability for politicians, was launched in the West Bank. The YouKnow Initiative is designed to bring activists, journalists, bloggers and citizens together with decision-makers, including the PA, healthcare providers, telecommunications, and businesses, in a social-media like setting. (Al-Jazeera)

The 27th conference of the PLO Central Council was under the heading “Steadfastness and Popular Resistance.” In a statement issued at the conclusion of the meeting, the Council announced the suspension of the security coordination with Israel, in all its forms. It also stated that peace would be achieved only if an independent Palestinian State is established on the 1967 borders and the right of return is realized; and pledged to continue the boycott of Israeli products and the activity against Israel in the ICC. (Ma’an News Agency, pjmedia.com)

Israel will partially resume imports from the Gaza Strip starting next week, Israeli officials said. The move was designed to help the Gaza economy and to make up for a shortfall in produce from Israeli farmlands. The move was welcomed by Jamal Abu al-Naja, Director of the Gaza Vegetable Production and Export Association. (Haaretz)

6

A Palestinian motorist from East Jerusalem injured at least five Israelis, including four security officials, when he rammed his vehicle into near a tram stop. The Palestinian was immediately shot by a Border Guard. Israeli police said none of those hit was seriously injured. (Palestine News Network, Reuters)

Hassan al-Zaalan, a Popular Resistance Movement official, said the car attack in Jerusalem “comes as a response to Israeli crimes”. Hamas spokesperson, Fawzi Barhoum, remarked on the “heroic” attack describing the man’s actions as a “natural response” to Israeli crimes, adding that the “extremist” Israeli Government was responsible for the Jerusalem situation. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces deployed on the border, east of Khan Yunis, opened fire at Palestinians in the eastern the Gaza Strip. An Israeli Army spokeswoman said that shots were fired as Palestinians approached the fence, after which they turned back. (Ma’an News Agency)

An Israeli official told Radio Israel that civil and defense cooperation with the PA continued unimpeded. A source close to President Abbas told Israel Radio that the PLO decision was a recommendation only. Another official said that Abbas must issue a presidential order before security cooperation ends. (The Times of Israel)

According to a White House Official, President Obama wants to renew efforts to achieve progress in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process in the two years he has left in office. His strategy will depend on the makeup of the next Israeli Government, said the official. (Haaretz)

The Kerem Shalom crossing will be opened as an exception to allow 40,000 litres of fuel to reach the power plant in the Gaza Strip, Border Crossings Director Nathmi Mhannad said. (Ma’an News Agency)

Two hundred senior (over 60 years old) Palestinians from Gaza headed to pray in the Al-Aqsa Mosque via the Erez crossing. (Ma’an News Agency)

The following statement was issued by the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General: The Secretary-General expresses his concern regarding the 5 March decision by the Palestine Liberation Organization’s (PLO) Central Council to suspend all forms of security coordination with Israel. The Secretary-General notes that the PLO Executive Committee will report on implementation of this decision to the PLO Central Council in three months. This still provides a window of opportunity for both sides to take necessary actions to honour their obligations. In this regard, he urges both parties to exercise utmost restraint and reverse their unhelpful cycle of actions and counter-actions. The Secretary-General repeats his call on Israel to resume the transfer of tax revenues legally due to the Palestinian Authority as per the Paris Protocol. In the absence of effective international engagement, the situation may further unravel. The Secretary General urgently calls on the international community, including the Security Council, to exercise leadership and help create conditions for a negotiated final peace agreement that will end the Israeli occupation and realize the creation of a viable Palestinian State, living in peace and security alongside Israel. (www.un.org)

The Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign (IPSC) will be hosting from 7 to 14 March a week of informative and interactive events - including public talks, film screenings and protest rallies - to mark the 11th annual Israeli Apartheid Week. (Palestine News Network)

Israeli forces shot and injured five Palestinian teenagers during clashes that broke out near al-Jalazone refugee camp in northern Ramallah. (Ma’an News Agency)

The only power plant in the Gaza Strip is set to resume operations after a fuel delivery, Palestinian officials said. The Kerem Shalom crossing would be opened as an exception to allow 40,000 liters of fuel to reach the power plant. (International Middle East Media Center)

7

More than 30 Palestinians, mostly women, were injured as Israeli troops forcibly dispersed a peaceful march marking International Women’s Day at Qalandiya checkpoint between Jerusalem and Ramallah. (Ma’an News Agency)

A seven-year-old Palestinian boy was reportedly shot with a rubber-coated bullet by Israeli soldiers in his house in the Ras al-Amud neighborhood of occupied East Jerusalem. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli naval forces shot and killed a Palestinian fisherman and arrested two others while they were sailing in small fishing boats off the coast south of Gaza City. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Israeli army reduced fishing space off the coast of the Gaza Strip to four nautical miles from the six miles agreed on as part of last summer’s cease-fire agreement, Gaza’s fishermen’s union has said. (Middle East Monitor)

8

The Israeli army issued a master plan to utilize land in a Firing Zone in the Jordan Valley to expand nearby settlements. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli settlers assaulted an elderly Palestinian man from the Silwan neighborhood in occupied East Jerusalem. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud Party released a statement saying that a 2009 speech the premier had delivered, which expressed support for a Palestinian state, was “simply not relevant” any longer. Netanyahu’s office issued another statement late Sunday night denying that the Prime Minister had renounced his previous tentative support for a two-state solution. The seeming discrepancy between the two statements comes in advance of Israel’s March 17 elections, in which Netanyahu is trying to bolster his support from right-wing voters. (The New York Times)

The center-left Zionist Union, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s main political rival in the March 17 elections, presented its platform with an emphasis on achieving a diplomatic settlement with the Palestinians. The 40-page-long document proposes demilitarization of the Palestinian State, keeping the settlement blocs in the occupied West Bank under Israeli sovereignty, preserving Jerusalem as the eternal capital of Israel, and guaranteeing religious freedom and access to the Holy Places of all religions while maintaining Israeli sovereignty. (Xinhua)

A large number of extremist settlers broke into the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound under the protection of special Israeli police units and tried to provoke Palestinians. (PNN)

9

Israeli forces threw toxic gas canisters toward several Palestinian students and citizens in the old city of Hebron during Israeli military maneuvers resulting in many cases of suffocation. (Jordan News Agency)

The Arab League intends to submit to the UN Security Council a new draft proposal calling for ending the Israeli occupation of Palestine. The proposal calls for a full Israeli withdrawal from all territories Israel occupied following the 1967 war, including the Golan Heights and areas in southern Lebanon, in addition to the West Bank and East Jerusalem. The proposal reportedly offers recommendations regarding a “just solution to the issue of Palestinian refugees,” but does not offer details regarding implementing all related United Nations resolutions on the issue, completely ignored by Israel. (International Middle East Media Center)

Sources privy to talks between the Islamic Jihad delegation and Egyptian authorities in Cairo said a deal regarding the Rafah crossing is beginning to formulate. The two groups started discussions in Cairo on 1 March to address the need for Egyptian authorities to open the Rafah crossing between Egypt and the Gaza Strip. (Ma’an News Agency)

Around 9,500 Palestinians are still living in United Nations Schools in Gaza. (PNN)

Egyptian authorities opened the Rafah crossing with Gaza for two days. (Ma’an News Agency)

Despite the concerted efforts of right-wing activists, including city councillor Aryeh King, to foil the sale of a Jewish-owned building in East Jerusalem to its longtime Arab tenants, the sale was completed this week. (PNN)

Israeli forces demolished the home of a Ramallah court Judge in the West Bank, claiming that the house, located near the separation wall, lacked the necessary building permits. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces uprooted 300 olive trees on private Palestinian land in the Nablus village of Salem. The fields are located near the illegal Israeli outpost of Havat Skali. (Ma’an News Agency)

Over 15,000 Palestinian women, including minors, mothers, students, and lawmakers, have been arrested by Israeli forces since the Israeli occupation of Gaza Strip and the West Bank in 1967. The longest serving Palestinian woman prisoner is Lena Al-Jarboni who is serving a 17-year sentence since 2002. The youngest female detainee is the 16-year-old Dima Sawahra, a school student who was arrested on 1 March 2014 and sentenced to 18 months. (Fars News)

Sweden is to increase its annual contribution to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) to USD 36 million. This does not include the country’s contribution to the UNRWA emergency appeal, which amounts to USD 4.8 million in 2015. (UNRWA)

Dozens of women took part in a sit-in protest in front of UNRWA’s headquarters in Gaza to demand that the international community accelerate the reconstruction of Gaza. The protest, organized by PNGO, also called for an end to the Israeli blockade. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces assaulted a group of Palestinian detainees awaiting trial at Ofer military court, a lawyer for the prisoners said. (Ma’an News Agency)

10

Israeli forces stormed Nablus and detained three young Palestinian men after ransacking their homes, Palestinian security sources said. (Ma’an News Agency)

Fifteen young men and teenagers were arrested by Israeli troops in the town of Tuqu, southeast of Bethlehem, municipal sources said. (Ma’an News Agency)

Four Palestinian fighters were injured in an accidental explosion at a military training base in southern Gaza City, medics said. (Ma’an News Agency)

Palestinian security services have arrested some 50 members of Hamas and Islamic Jihad in the West Bank over the last two days, fearing that a terror attack in the coming days would give the election to Likud, Israeli security sources said. (Haaretz)

Arab Foreign Ministers supported the Palestinian leadership for requesting the ICC to file lawsuits against the Israeli leaders for war crimes against the Palestinian people. They called on the EU and its member countries to boycott the products of the settlements. (KUNA)

Diplomats from Germany, France, Britain, Italy and Spain protested to the PA last week that it was not doing enough to rebuild the Gaza Strip, according to European diplomats and senior Israeli Foreign Ministry officials. An EU diplomat said: “While you always need more, the Israelis are removing hurdles and assisting reconstruction. At the same time, reconstruction is still stuck because of the internal fights on the Palestinian side, Egyptian behavior and failure to deliver funds pledged by the Arab States.” (Haaretz)

A large convoy of medical supplies is expected to reach the Gaza Strip today, the Palestinian Ministry of Health said. The convoy set out from Nablus and is said to be carrying supplies worth $2.7 million. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Walla Israeli website said that Hamas has recently sent a series of messages to Israeli authorities offering a long-term ceasefire, which would last for at least 5 years, in exchange with ending the siege on Gaza, and discussed the proposal with UN Special Coordinator Serry and Swiss consul Paul Garnier. Hamas and Israeli officials denied the report. (IMEMC, The Jerusalem Post)

Mohammad al-Amadi, head of the Qatari Committee to Rebuild Gaza, said that earlier in the day Israel had allowed four truckloads of cement into the Gaza Strip so that the planned construction of the 1,000 dwellings as part of the $1 billion aid pledge could begin. (The Jerusalem Post)

For months, Israeli police have been giving the Jerusalem municipality lists of hundreds of Palestinian residents suspected of security offenses. Municipal employees then investigate them and their relatives to see if it is possible to demolish an illegally built house, collect unpaid taxes or close an unlicensed business, according to documents seen by Haaretz. (Haaretz)

Israeli forces levelled vast areas of land in the East Jerusalem town of Issawiya, a local committee member said. The land is located in an area Israeli authorities have earmarked for a national park, in a controversial plan known as “11092”. (Ma’an News Agency, WAFA)

A recent poll conducted by the Jerusalem Media and Communications Centre (JMCC) found out almost 69 percent of the Palestinians support the move to appeal to the ICC, even with the financial crisis gripping the PA. (WAFA)

Israel’s Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman brushed off Palestinian threats to take him to the ICC. Mr. Lieberman wrote on Facebook that the Palestinians “will get an answer to that from me as Defence Minister,” reflecting his aspirations for the post after the general election on 17 March. (AFP)

In Damascus, UNRWA Commissioner-General Pierre Krähenbühl accompanied the first aid convoy to enter the Yarmouk camp in three months. He said it was unacceptable that some 18,000 residents of Yarmouk had not received aid for so long. (AFP)

11

Witnesses said more than four Israeli military vehicles escorted bulldozers into the eastern outskirts of the Maghazi refugee camp in Gaza. The bulldozers levelled land while shots were sporadically fired from the military vehicles. No injuries were reported. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces demolished a newly built stone factory and a number of barns in the Palestinian villages of Bartaa al-Sharqiyya and of Zabda in the south and west of Jenin respectively. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Palestinian Power Generation Company has withdrawn from a deal to buy natural gas from the Leviathan field, an Israeli offshore site, amid concerns over development delays. Owners of the field said that the Company had canceled a $1.2 billion agreement, signed in 2014, to buy 4.75 billion cubic meters of gas over 20 years. (The Times of Israel)

According to a Palestinian merchant, four truckloads of Gaza tomatoes and eggplants will be shipped to Israel from the Gaza Strip on 12 March. The move will be the first in eight years. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Israeli authorities have decided to allow white Portland cement into the Gaza Strip for the first time in several years, said Nathmi Muhanna, a Gaza-based PA official. Israel subjects the white Portland cement to heavy regulation because it could be intended for military situations. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Egyptian authorities shut down the Rafah crossing between Egypt and the Gaza Strip after it was opened exceptionally on 9 and 10 March for humanitarian cases. (PNN)

The Egyptian government appealed a ruling by Cairo’s Court for Urgent Matters labeling Hamas as a “terrorist” organization. The decision was welcomed by Hamas. (WAFA)

12

The leader of the Israeli “Jewish Home” party, Naftali Bennett, entered the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron under strict security, escorted by several members of his party and met with Israel’s army commander in Hebron, Yariv Ben Ezra. The move comes just days ahead of the Israeli Knesset elections and weeks after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced his own plans to visit the mosque. The Ibrahimi Mosque is known to Jews as the Cave of the Patriarchs and is the site where both faiths believe the Biblical patriarch Abraham is buried. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces again today opened fire at Palestinians on land east of the city of Khuzaa in the southern Gaza Strip. Witnesses said that Israeli soldiers deployed at the border opened fire at individuals who were on private Palestinian land in the area, which is east of Khan Younis. (Ma’an News Agency)

An Israeli official said on that permit restrictions for West Bank Palestinians wishing to enter Israel will be relaxed. The Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories, Yoav Mordechai, said in a statement that as of 15 March, men over the age of 55 and women over the age of 50 will be allowed to cross into Israel for daily visits without the need for permits. Also, men over the age of 22 will be eligible to apply for work permits starting Sunday, in contrast to current regulations that only allow married men over 24 who have children to apply. (Ma’an News Agency)

Hamas holds on to the principle of partnership in the management of Gaza’s crossing, a senior member of the group said, adding that the group rejects any proposal to replace the existing staff with Palestinian Authority dissidents. In a statement, Ismail Al-Ashqar stressed that Hamas will only hand over the crossings within a comprehensive vision for the implementation of the tasks entrusted to the unity government, particularly the ending of the staff crisis, the paying of the operational budgets of the ministries in Gaza, and carrying out its responsibilities towards the Strip “to the fullest”. (Middle East Monitor)

Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs Mohammad Mustafa signed an agreement with the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development Resources, which maps out Kuwait’s pledge of US $200 million during the Cairo donor conference to reconstruct the Gaza Strip. (WAFA)

Israeli authorities allowed the import of Gaza produce for the first time since Hamas seized control of the territory in 2007, a move that will aid Gaza’s battered economy and help pious Jews observe a biblical farming sabbatical. Some 27 tons of tomatoes and 5 tons of eggplants were cleared to leave Gaza for Israel, Palestinian officials and Gaza merchants said. (Associated Press)

13

Israeli soldiers arrested three Palestinians in Bethlehem and Hebron and broke into and searched several homes and stores, while many residents suffered the effects of tear gas inhalation. (IMEMC)

US Secretary of State John Kerry is set to meet Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Jordan’s King Abdullah on the sidelines of economic talks in Egypt. The leaders would discuss the economic crisis facing the Palestinian Authority. Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi may also attend the meeting the official said. (AFP)

Israel allowed 198 Palestinians from the Gaza Strip to travel to Jerusalem to participate in the Friday Prayer at the Al-Aqsa Mosque, Palestinian liaison officials said. Buses from Gaza passed through the Erez crossing at dawn carrying the worshipers, who are all over 60 years old. (Palestine News Network, Ma’an News Agency)

Hamas launched a social media campaign, under the hashtag #AskHamas, in the run-up to a key EU court ruling which will determine whether it will be designated a terrorist organization. (Ma’an News Agency)

Secretary Kerry held talks on the peace process with President Abbas, Egyptian President al-Sisi and Jordan’s King Abdullah II. The four discussed creating an environment to “push forward the peace process to reach a comprehensive and just peace in the region,” Sisi’s office said after they met. (AFP)

14

The military wing of Hamas said that it had rebuilt a number of military bases near the Israeli border in the Gaza Strip, asserting that it had recovered from Israel’s summer offensive and was “not afraid” of confronting the occupation forces again. (Ma’an News Agency)

Senior Hamas official Mahmoud Zahhar accused President Abbas of failing to fulfil his promise to hold elections for the Palestinian parliament. Zahhar rejected Abbas’ invitation for Hamas to sign a document pledging to take part in presidential and parliamentary elections. He also accused the PA of conveying false claims about Hamas to intelligence services in other Arab countries. (Ma’an News Agency)

15

Israeli army opened gunfire towards a group of Gaza farmers east of Khan Yunis, according to a WAFA correspondent. (WAFA)

Israeli forces arrested a Palestinian trader at the Erez crossing, the Palestinian liaison office said, despite him having a valid permit. (Ma’an News Agency)

Quartet Representative Tony Blair is reportedly preparing to resign from the post which he held for nearly eight years and negotiating a different position with the Quartet, a report by the Financial Times said. (WAFA)

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman visited the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron, as part of his election campaign, to assert its Jewish identity. Israeli security services sealed off the area. (PNN)

Israeli forces arrested four Palestinian girls outside the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and another girl inside, witnesses said, on a day in which dozens of right-wing Jewish Israelis entered the compound. (Ma’an News Agency)

Director of UNRWA Operations in Gaza Robert Turner said at a press briefing that a “new war” would be inescapable if the blockade was not lifted and the Gaza Strip reconstructed. UNRWA, Turner said, had

16

Israeli forces detained 23 Palestinians across the West Bank overnight and seven minors in East Jerusalem, a prisoners’ rights group said. (Ma’an News Agency)

EU High Representative Federica Mogherini “proposed as EU representative for the Middle East Mr. Gentilini, who is a very valiant Italian diplomat,” Italy’s Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni told reporters. (The Jerusalem Post)

Israeli Jerusalem District Court postponed the eviction of a Palestinian-rented house in Jerusalem Old City’s neighbourhood of Aqabat al-Khalidiya until May, as settlers were preparing to take over the house. (PNN)

Israeli sources reported that General Yoav Mordechai, IDF’s Coordinator of Government Activities in the OPT, said in a press conference that “Palestinians in West Bank will be offered new travel facilities” especially for entering Jerusalem, starting from 15 March. Males aged 55 and above and females above 50 will be allowed to enter the Israeli-governed territories without a permit. Also, special permits will be issued for married male workers who are above 22. (PNN)

The Palestinian Monetary Authority launched a Youth Banking week to raise financial awareness among schoolchildren. (PNN)

The Real Madrid Foundation and UNRWA are re-starting the “Social Sports Schools in the occupied Palestinian territory” programme. Around 1,100 refugee children have so far benefited from the programme by taking part in football academies, which promote teamwork, gender equality and leadership. (UNRWA)

Finland has signed a new multi-year funding agreement that will see it contribute $ 4.8 million per year to the UNRWA General Fund between 2015 and 2018. (UNRWA)

The Palestinian Centre for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA) said that 2014 saw 465 violations of media freedoms in the OPT. Israeli forces committed a total of 351 violations of press freedoms, 112 of which were recorded in Gaza and 239 in the West Bank. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu said there would be no Palestinian State if he was re-elected. During a tour of the “Har Homa” settlement in East Jerusalem, he also said, “We will continue to build to fortify Jerusalem so its division will not be possible and it will remain united forever.” (AFP)

Israeli settlers set up mobile homes on private land belonging to Palestinian farmers in the village of Jalud, south of Nablus. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli soldiers installed a mobile home on Palestinian land near the village of Kisan, east of Bethlehem, which had been bulldozed to build a settlement “industrial zone”. (IMEMC)

17

Israeli soldiers detained a Palestinian in Jenin and installed a roadblock near the city as the army conducted several hours of training in the former Israeli military base in Sanour. (IMEMC)

The Israeli army opened fire towards Palestinian farmers east of Gaza City, forcing them to leave. There were no reports of casualties. Hours earlier, the army had arrested two Palestinians near the Israeli border east of the Al-Maghazi refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip. (WAFA)

The Egyptian army demolished 1,020 houses on the Egyptian side of Rafah as part of the second stage of the establishment of a buffer zone along the Gaza border. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli authorities said plans to allow elderly Palestinians into Israel without permit would be activated this week. (Ma’an News Agency)

A group of Israeli settlers beat and injured with sticks and glass bottles two Palestinian youths who were tending their farmland southwest of Jenin. (WAFA)

A French prosecutor said experts re-examining evidence had confirmed their earlier conclusion that the 2004 death of Yasser Arafat was not the result of poisoning. (AFP)

On 23 March, during the current 28th session, the Human Rights Council is scheduled to hear an initial oral report on the probe into violations of IHL in the context of last summer’s Gaza war. The Commission of Inquiry’s full report will be presented to the Council during its 29th session in June. (The Jerusalem Post)

Israeli soldiers detained ten Palestinians, including a woman and five children, in different parts of East Jerusalem, and one in Ramallah. (IMEMC)

Israeli soldiers arrested the general coordinator of the Popular Resistance Committee as he was heading back to Hebron. (IMEMC)

Member of the Executive Committee of the PLO, Salef Rafat, told Xinhua in an interview that the PLO will call for holding an international peace conference to resolve the conflict with Israel, no matter who wins in the Israeli elections. He said that President Abbas is to chair a meeting of the PLO Executive Committee in Ramallah on 19 March to study the implementations of the latest decisions of the PLO Central Council and would announce the call for the peace conference. (Xinhua)

The Palestinian Government said it was putting an emergency budget in place for 2015 due to the absence of pledged international aid and Israel withholding its tax revenues which rendered the Government unable to fulfil its duties. The Government said it will continue to pay partial salaries to its 160,000 public servants and it cut the running cost of its offices to half of what it was in 2014. (Reuters)

Israeli forces attacked the popular demonstration of hundreds of citizens and supporters, including foreigners and Israelis, that was launched on the day of Israeli Knesset elections in defence of the Palestinian people’s rights. Israeli forces detained at least seven activists, in addition to two students from Al-Quds University, and two Israeli activists. (Palestine News Network)

Israeli military courts on extended the detention of 56 Palestinian prisoners for interrogation and legal procedures, a prisoners’ rights group said (Ma’an News Agency)

18

Israeli forces opened fire on farmers east of Bureij refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip and near the town of Khuzaa in the southern Gaza Strip. Separately, a number of military vehicles made an incursion east of Gaza City. (Ma’an News Agency)

A Palestinian man was injured after Israeli soldiers attacked him at a military roadblock near Beit Sahur in the district of Bethlehem. Separately, the IDF invaded Ya’bad town near Jenin, held a family and searched their property. (IMEMC)

Israeli troops arrested six Palestinians and one Israeli solidarity activist during a rally east of Abu Dis protesting Israeli plans to displace Palestinian Bedouins living in the “E1” corridor. Israeli troops also arrested three young Palestinian men from the Nablus district and took a Palestinian man into custody at a checkpoint near the Nablus-area village of Aqraba. (Ma’an News Agency)

A count of 99 percent of the ballots in the Knesset elections had Likud (Netanyahu) with 30 seats and the Zionist Union (Herzog and Livni) with 24. The Joint Arab List placed third with 14 seats. Yair Lapid’s party received 11 seats. Moshe Kahlon received 10 seats, with Bayit Yehudi (Bennett) getting eight seats, Yisrael Beitenu (Liberman) got 6, United Torah Judaism and Shas 7 each, with Meretz dropping to 4. Eli Yishai’s Yachad party did not pass the electoral threshold. (Ynetnews)

The EU is committed to working with the new Israeli Government on re-launching a peace process with the Palestinians, EU High Representative Federica Mogherini said. (Newsweek)

The PA will speed up its process of prosecuting Israel at the ICC as a result of the Israeli elections, Chief negotiator Saeb Erekat said. Prime Minister Netanyahu will form the next Government and has “just said that he is against a Palestinian State,” Erekat added. “It is very clear that there is no partner in Israel for the peace process,” he said. “It is clear now that Israeli society is in favour of burying the peace process, burying the two-State solution and continuing with dictates and settlements.” (DPA)

Armed Israeli settlers took over a Palestinian property in East Jerusalem’s town of Silwan as well as two plots of land which belong to two different Palestinian families. (WAFA)

For the fourth time in a row, Israeli forces tore down more than 20 tents and steel constructions used as dwellings and agricultural storehouses in the Jericho district, a Palestinian official said. (Ma’an News Agency)

The IDF cut and sprayed the roots of around 150 olive trees south of Hebron, claiming they were planted on State land. (WAFA)

Israeli authorities refused access to Gaza for a working group of the European Parliament Delegation for relations with the PLC. No justification was given. Delegation Chair, Irish MEP Martina Anderson stated: “This visit was meant to send a strong signal that Gazans are not forgotten. However, it appears that preventing European Parliament delegations from entering Gaza has become a trend and pattern.” The MEPs alerted their respective diplomatic representatives to voice their protest. (Kuwait News Agency)

Nine Palestinians were injured after Israeli forces opened fire on protesters at al-Jalazun refugee camp north of Ramallah. The protest reportedly began after locals gathered in opposition to the construction of a wall between the refugee camp and the nearby Israeli settlement “Beit El”. (Ma’an News Agency)

The United Nations said that Israel needs to stick with the Middle East peace process to remain a democracy after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu abandoned a commitment ahead of his re-election to negotiate a Palestinian state. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon believes the peace process, including an end to illegal settlement building, is “the best and only way forward for Israel to remain a democratic state,” UN spokesperson Farhan Haq told reporters. (Reuters)

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will work with any Israeli government that accepts the principle of a two-State solution, his spokesman said. “It doesn’t matter to us who the next prime minister of Israel is, what we expect from this government is to recognize the two-State solution,” Nabil Abu Rudeina said in a statement. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Secretary General of the Arab League, Nabil Elaraby, dismissed as “electioneering” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s vow to rule out a Palestinian State if re-elected, saying that “there will be enough pressure on any Israeli government that the situation as it is cannot continue; Israel is going to be a pariah.” (Ma’an News Agency)

Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat blamed the international community for Israel’s election results and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s re-election. “Such a result would not have been possible had the international community held Israel to account for its systematic violations of international law.” (Haaretz)

Palestinian youths clashed with Israeli forces in Silwan in East Jerusalem after Israeli security guards prevented members of a Palestinian family from entering the building to access their apartment; earlier in the day settlers had taken over three of four apartments in the building. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces on uprooted 300 olive trees and destroyed more than 5,000 meters of stone barriers belonging to Palestinians in the village of Majdal Bani Fadil south of Nablus. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces undertook a military operation in the areas of Makhoul and Al-Hadidiyya in the northern Jordan Valley where bulldozers demolished dozens of homes and livestock barns and confiscated two water tanks in Al-Farisiya with no previous warning. (Palestine News Network)

The Guardian reported that British Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg had said if Prime Minister Netanyahu did not backtrack from his remarks regarding a two-State solution, Britain would have no choice but to recognize a Palestinian State. (Haaretz)

19

The Israeli military arrested 15 Palestinians across the West Bank, concentrating on Hebron, where 9 Palestinians were detained, as well as 2 in Jenin, 2 in Ramallah and 1 in Jerusalem, according to security officials. (Ma’an News Agency, Palestine News Agency)

A prominent Member of the European Parliament called on the EU take action to save the two-State solution. “If the EU doesn’t act now, the two-State option is off the table, occupation will become permanent, and both Palestinians and Israelis will lose. EU Member States must follow the Swedish example and recognize the Palestinian State alongside Israel,” said Martina Anderson, Chairperson of the European Parliament Delegation for relations with the Palestinian Legislative Council. “Israel must understand that occupation is illegal and comes at a cost. The EU has leverage. We have to enforce our own rules and implement international law against settlement expansion, settlement products, and settlers.” (Kuwait News Agency)

The Obama administration might be open to support UN Security Council’s resolution defining the two-State solution based on Israel’s 1967 borders, a senior White House official told The New York Times. The move would come in response to Netanyahu’s rejection of a Palestinian State as expressed in his own Bar Ilan speech in 2009. (Ha’aretz)

Settlers uprooted over 60 olive trees in the central West Bank, a Palestinian official said. (Ma’an News Agency)

Four Israeli bulldozers and a military vehicle entered Palestinian land near Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip, witnesses said. In a separate incident, Israeli forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen across the al-Sudaniyya shore off Gaza City. (Ma’an News Agency)

Prime Minister Netanyahu told a number of US Broadcasters that he had not intended to reverse his 2009 endorsement of a two-State solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but only to say that it was impossible right now. (AFP, Ma’an News Agency, The New York Times)

White House Spokesman Josh Earnest rejected Mr. Netanyahu’s clarification of comments he had made about a Palestinian State and Israel’s Arab community during the campaign. He said that President Obama would react to the Prime Minister’s clarifications. (Haaretz)

In a telephone call, President Barack Obama congratulated Mr. Netanyahu on his re-election. But according to a White House Official, Mr. Obama had also told him that the US was reassessing its approach to Israeli-Palestinian peace in light of his pre-election comments rejecting the establishment of a Palestinian State. (Haaretz)

President Abbas convened a PLO Executive Committee meeting in Ramallah to discuss Palestine’s strategy after Mr. Netanyahu’s re-election and his recent comments. A PLO statement was issued condemning Netanyahu’s “reckless racism campaign”, adding that Palestine will “take the necessary steps to complete the accession” to the ICC. (DPA)

In a statement AIPAC called on Washington to strengthen its ties with Israel following the re-election of Netanyahu, and castigated the White House for its cool response to the Israeli leader’s clarifications. (The Times of Israel)

UNRWA said life for Palestinian refugees in Syria was becoming increasingly unsustainable, as reports suggest nine refugees drowned in March trying to reach Europe by boat. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli authorities allowed 1,000 tons of cement paid for by Qatar to enter the Gaza Strip through the Kerem Shalom crossing. (AFP)

20

Israel’s army opened six criminal investigations into soldiers’ actions during the 50 day fighting in the Gaza Strip, including the bombing of an UNRWA school. (JTA)

A leaked report prepared by heads of European missions in Jerusalem warns that the city has reached a dangerous boiling point, and that the rising violence and polarization are threatening the “viability of the two-State solution.” The report also calls for further sanctions against products made in the settlements and steps against “known violent settlers.” (The Guardian)

Israeli soldiers injured an 11-year-old Palestinian boy after repeatedly kicking and punching him in Al-Khader, south of Bethlehem. (IMEMC)

Israeli soldiers attacked a weekly protest against the wall and settlements in Kufur Qaddoum village near Qalqilya, wounding three Palestinians. Soldiers also attacked a weekly protest in Nil’in village, west of Ramallah, wounding two Palestinians and one foreign journalist. During a demonstration in Bethlehem, Israeli forces injured a 13-year-old child. (IMEMC, PNN)

Israeli forces detained two Palestinians in the town of Doura, north of Hebron, and two Palestinian youths in the town of Azzun, east of Qalqilya. (IMEMC, Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces shot and moderately injured two Palestinians in the town of Absan, east of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip. (Ma’an News Agency)

Egyptian naval forces detained nine Palestinian fishermen off the coast of the southern Gaza Strip. An Egyptian military source confirmed the arrest saying that they had crossed into Egyptian territorial waters. (Ma’an News Agency)

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu to congratulate him on his recent electoral victory. The Secretary-General urged the Prime Minister to release the tax revenues currently held by Israel but owed to the Palestinian Authority. The Secretary-General also reiterated his view that the two-State solution was the only way forward and urged the Prime Minister to renew Israel’s commitment to that goal. (SG Spokesperson’s Office)

The Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics said that Palestine suffered from the unfair distribution of water sources, which remained under almost full Israeli control. It said Israel’s daily water consumption per capita had reached seven times higher than that of Palestine. (www.pcbs.gov.ps)

The Commission on the Status of Women approved a resolution on the situation of and assistance to Palestinian women (document E/CN.6/2015/L.2), by 27 in favour to 2 against (Israel, United States), with 13 abstentions. (UN press release WOM/2035)

21

Israeli forces stormed several areas of Hebron, where they set up military checkpoints and arrested a Palestinian. (WAFA)

Masked Israeli settlers from “Ma’on”, south of Hebron, threw stones at Palestinian children and injured a six-year-old girl in the head. (IMEMC)

22

Israeli police arrested two Palestinians, including an elderly, near Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem. Meanwhile, Israeli police allowed around 120 settlers to roam the yards of the Mosque, infuriating worshippers. In Hebron, Israeli forces raided several homes and arrested one Palestinian. (WAFA)

Senior leaders of Hamas met with their counterparts from Islamic Jihad in Gaza. The issues on the agenda were the relationship with the Israeli occupation authorities; the Palestine Liberation Organisation; Jerusalem; the challenges facing the Palestinian cause; and the fast-changing regional scenario. (MEMO)

Deputy Chief of the Hamas politburo Ismail Haniyeh said that his movement would continue to seek national unity and political partnership. He also urged “all Palestinian people to achieve real reconciliation and put into effect the agreements reached in Doha, Cairo and al-Shati refugee camp in Gaza.” (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces launched a military drill in the areas surrounding Gaza without any previous warning. The drill includes active movement of military machines and warplanes, in addition to noise from bombardment that last until late night hours. (PNN)

The Commissioner General of United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) called Israel to lift the eight-year siege of the Gaza Strip, saying that the siege is “no longer acceptable”. (Middle East Monitor-MEMO)

23

At least 10 Palestinians were arrested by Israeli forces during pre-dawn raids in Nablus, Hebron, Jenin and East Jerusalem. (WAFA)

The PA’s Committee of Prisoners’ Affairs said Israel had recently rearrested two Palestinians released as part of the 2011 prisoners swap and ordered them to serve their original sentences. (WAFA)

Israel issued five demolition orders in Silwan in East Jerusalem. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Human Rights Council took up the human rights situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory and other Occupied Arab Territories, hearing an oral update by the Commission of Inquiry on the 2014 Gaza Conflict, holding an interactive dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian Territories Occupied since 1967, and hearing the presentation of reports by the Secretary-General and the High Commissioner for Human Rights. Mary McGowan Davis, Chairperson of the Commission of Inquiry, said that the Commission was looking at a broad range of alleged violations committed by all parties, and had done its utmost to obtain access to Israel and the Gaza Strip, as well as the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, but no response to the request for access had been received from Israel. The Commission had requested the Council to extend its mandate as more time was needed to assess the large amount of information. The Commission’s written report would be presented at the twenty-ninth session of the Council in June 2015. Special Rapporteur Makarim Wibisono stressed that the ferocity of destruction and the high proportion of civilian lives lost in Gaza cast serious doubt over Israel’s adherence to the principles of international humanitarian law. The treatment of Palestinians in the West Bank and in Gaza was a situation of oppression and humiliation of an occupied people, which periodically flared up in ugly escalations of hostilities. He expressed deep concern by frequent reports of excessive use of force by the occupying power in the West Bank, continued settlement construction, and treatment of Palestinians, including children in Israeli detention. (www.ohchr.org)

Israeli soldiers kidnapped six Palestinians in East Jerusalem, including two workers from Bethlehem, and injured several residents. (IMEMC)

Israeli forces shut down the road between Jaba and Nablus causing heavy traffic and forcing all vehicles with Palestinian plates to take another road. Israeli forces maintain severe restrictions on Palestinians’ freedom of movement in the West Bank with fixed and flying checkpoints. (PNN)

The Israel Electric Corporation disconnected the grids feeding the northern West Bank cities of Nablus and Jenin, as well as all areas which receive power from the Palestinian Northern West Bank electricity company. (Ma’an News Agency)

Dozens of Palestinians from Gaza visited relatives jailed in Israel, in a visit coordinated by the International Committee of the Red Cross. (Ma’an News Agency)

Ala at-Teety, a Palestinian journalist detained in January 2015, received a four-month administrative detention order issued by the Ofer Israeli military court without charges and trial. According to the Palestinian Prisoner’s Club, Israeli authorities issued administrative detention orders against 81 Palestinian prisoners since the beginning of March. (IMEMC –WAFA)

The Kuwaiti government announced its approval of the annual contribution of $2 million to the General Fund of UNRWA to enable it to continue providing essential health, education and social relief services to Palestinian refugees. (WAFA)

Israeli and US representatives were absent from the UN Human Rights Council session on the Palestinian territories, in Geneva. The session aimed to look into the Gaza conflict which killed 2,200 people in 50 days in 2014. The US opposes Item 7 of the agenda on the ground that it lacks legitimacy. The European Union joined Palestinian and Arab delegations in calling on Israel to allow a UN human rights investigator to visit Gaza. (The Palestine Chronicle)

24

Israeli soldiers invaded a town, near Tulkarem, leading to clashes with local youths. (IMEMC)

Israeli forces detained nine Palestinians and physically assaulted two others across several West Bank districts. (WAFA)

Islamic Jihad is gaining strength in the West Bank, representing a new terrorist threat, according to senior IDF officials from the Central Territorial Command. (The Jerusalem Post)

PLO Central Committee member Wassel Abu Yousef said that the White House Chief of Staff statements were “late”, and that these words should be matched with actions to end the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land, in order to give the Palestinian people their right to self-determination. (PNN)

Israeli soldiers invaded al-Koum, a Palestinian village in the south of Hebron and handed orders for the destruction of two Palestinian homes and a well. (IMEMC)

Israeli soldiers, accompanied by armoured bulldozers, invaded Ta’nak near Jenin and demolished a deep artesian well, in addition to uprooting ten Palestinian olive trees. (IMEMC)

The Israeli military have recommended unfreezing Palestinian tax revenues. The Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth reported a senior Israeli army official statement who warned that economic sanctions implemented by Israel against the PA could backfire. (The Times of Israel)

Israeli occupation forces opened fire towards Palestinian farmers and agricultural lands east of the central Gaza Strip. (IMEMC)

The Palestinian Prisoners Society (PPS) is highly concerned about the conditions and health of three ailing Palestinian detainees held by Israel who have been denied the essential medical treatment. (IMEMC)

At a press conference at the White House, US President Barack Obama expressed doubts about the prospect of a peace agreement emerging in the coming years under Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and indicated that no decision would be made about changing Washington’s policy of shielding Israel at the United Nations until a new coalition is formed. President Obama added that Mr. Netanyahu’s approach rejects a two-State solution, making the possibility of a framework deal “dim”. (AP, Haaretz, Times of Israel)

Four members of Israel’s Joint Arab List (third largest part in the Knesset) elected last week met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah. The delegation was headed by the party chief Ayman Odeh and included Masoud Ghanayim, Jamal Zahalqa and Usama al-Saadi. (Ma’an News Agency)

At a meeting with the Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah, EU representatives signed an agreement for €3.5 million (US$3.83 million) to support Palestinian communities in Area C of the West Bank through the funding of infrastructure projects. The Representatives also condemned Israel’s failure to meet its obligations to Palestinians in Area C. (Ma’an News Agency)

25

Israeli forces detained six Palestinians from the West Bank. The Palestinian Prisoner’s Society identified the detainees as being from Qalqilya and Jenin. An Israeli army spokeswoman said four Palestinians were arrested in the area for illegal activity. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israel’s President Reuven Rivlin is expected to formally ask PM Netanyahu to form a new coalition government. (Reuters)

A resolution proposed by Die Linke, a German far-left opposition party, called on the German Government to “immediately recognize the State of Palestine in the 1967 borders” and to promote its full membership in the United Nations. No date has yet been set for a vote. (The Times of Israel)

During a meeting of permanent representatives to the Arab League in Sharm el-Sheikh, Algeria’s Permanent Representative Nazeer al-Arbawi said that his country would contribute US$52.8 million to Palestine’s budget this month. (Ma’an News Agency)

Palestine’s Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah arrived in the Gaza Strip for a three-day visit accompanied by two of his Ministers. According to Fatah officials the visit was intended to support Palestinians in Gaza and help speed up the stalled reconstruction process. The PM will meet with Hamas Leader Ismail Haniyeh. Hamas spokesperson Sami Abu Zuhri urged Mr. Hamdallah to end discrimination against Gaza, adding: “The Unity Government has failed, so far, to be a government for all Palestinians.” Palestinian children held shoes and signs in protest outside the hotel where Mr. Hamdallah was expected to hold a press conference. (Ma’an News Agency)

A 20-year-old Palestinian man died from injuries sustained last week during clashes with Israeli forces in al-Jalazun refugee camp. Ali Mahmoud Safi, 20, had been shot in the chest by Israeli forces on 18 March, and has been in a coma since being hospitalized. (Ma’an News Agency)

Three Palestinians were injured with rubber-coated steel bullets during clashes in the Shufat refugee camp in Jerusalem. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces raided a school to the west of Ramallah where they detained students and the teaching staff inside the school and prevented them from leaving for almost two hours, according to the school principal. (IMEMC)

The European Union urged Israelis and Palestinians to quickly restart peace talks that collapsed last year, as the bloc’s new foreign policy chief seeks to reinvigorate European involvement in the negotiations. Israel should make “every effort to ensure an early resumption of the Middle East peace process,” the EU said in a series of annual reports assessing progress on democracy and human rights in countries close to the 28-nation bloc. A separate report urged the Palestinian Authority to pursue “positive steps” to restart peace talks. (Reuters)

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu extended a “hand of peace” to the Palestinians as he was formally tasked with forming a government, saying that real peace will “only be assured if Israel is strong.” (AFP)

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is planning to host a reception for the members of the Joint List faction in the Israeli parliament after they are sworn in and hold discussions with them on political developments in Israel and the lawmakers’ Knesset activity, an official in Abbas’ office said. Joint List officials confirmed plans for the reception, but some of the but some of the 13 parliamentarians on the ticket, an alliance between Israel’s Arab parties and the Arab-Jewish Hadash party, were not pleased the PA had publicized the meeting. Some of the MKs are concerned that close public ties with the PA could have a negative effect on the party in Israel. (Haaretz)

France-based utility giant Suez Environnement said that it has decided not to take part in a cable car project linking West Jerusalem to the annexed eastern sector because of political sensitivities. The project, run by Jerusalem city council, has stoked controversy over the Israeli cable car’s planned route which passes through parts of mostly Arab East Jerusalem. (AFP)

Israel’s outgoing Government has suspended a controversial plan to build hundreds of new settler homes in annexed East Jerusalem, a news website reported. The plan involves the construction of 1,500 homes in the settlement neighbourhood of Har Homa where Prime Minister Netanyahu gave a controversial speech on the eve of the 17 March elections, pledging to build thousands of new homes if reelected. (AFP)

Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah arrived in the Gaza Strip for a three day visit, accompanied by Minister of Culture Ziad Abu Omar and Minister of Health Jawad Awwad. The visit is intended to support Palestinians in Gaza and help speed up the stalled reconstruction process. Hamdallah met with senior Hamas official Ismail Haniyeh and a Fatah delegation in the coastal territory. Top Hamas official Khalil al-Hayya said after the meeting that the movement has agreed with Hamdallah to form a committee focused on the issues facing the Gaza Strip. On 24 March senior Hamas leader Ismail Radwan had renewed his movement’s willingness to hand over Gaza crossings to the Palestinian Authority unity government in accordance with the Cairo Agreement. (Ma’an News Agency, Palestine Information Center)

Israel’s decision to withhold USD130 million a month in revenue collected on behalf of the Palestinians is strangling the economy and leaving the banking system dangerously exposed, the Palestinian Central Bank Governor said. Since Israel stopped the transfer of revenues from tax and customs duties in January, more than USD500 million had been withheld from the economy, prompting the Palestinian Authority to cut most of its employees’ salaries by 40 per cent and resort to an emergency budget. The government is also in danger of not being able to service its outstanding loans. With the deficit already at around 15 per cent of GDP and the tax transfers accounting for two-thirds of income, the budget is falling into a deeper hole every month. Unemployment stands at 25 per cent and output is set to contract this year, sharply increasing the threat of instability and violence. (Haaretz)

An Israeli military court decided to keep the Speaker of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) Aziz Dweik jailed until 17 May. The PLC, the inoperative parliament of the Palestinian Authority, said in a press statement that keeping its speaker in prison and bringing him 17 times to court without trial “is concocted and comic.” (Xinhua)

26

Israeli forces detained four Palestinians from Jerusalem after raiding their homes in the Old City and the Wadi al-Joz neighbourhood. (Ma’an News Agency)

Dozens of Israeli soldiers raided the southern West Bank district of Hebron searched and ransacked homes and detained five Palestinians, including two children. The Army also issued orders to six families to halt the construction of their homes. (IMEMC)

Palestinian armed groups, including Hamas’ military wing, committed war crimes in several attacks when they fired indiscriminate rockets and mortars towards Israel during the war in the Gaza Strip last summer, Amnesty International said. Six civilians in Israel, including a child, were killed by rockets. The worst case, however, took place in the Gaza Strip when a rocket fired by militants landed among Palestinian civilians, killing 13 people, including 11 children. (DPA)

Ambassador Riyad Mansour, Permanent Observer of the State of Palestine to the United Nations, said during a Security Council Debate on “Children and Armed Conflict” that Israel systematically fulfils three of the six criteria used to assess grave violations against Palestinian children: killing and maiming children, attacks against schools and hospitals, and abduction of children. (WAFA)

Jewish groups are preparing to mobilize the largest number of settlers to enter Al-Aqsa Mosque on the upcoming Jewish holiday of Passover and perform religious prayers in its yards. According to the Islamic Institute of Waqf and Heritage, the Temple coalition issued a survey to be answered by settlers who enter Al-Aqsa Mosque to learn more about what they face during their entrance to Al-Aqsa, whether it was harassment by the Israeli police or the Muslim worshipers. (WAFA)

Israel’s 2014 offensive on Gaza caused lasting and extensive damage to water, sanitation, and energy infrastructure, according to a recent report by the International Committee of the Red Cross, seriously reducing the territory’s water storage capacity, primarily in reservoirs and water tanks, and causing significant wastewater leakage. As a result, Gaza residents face high risks of further contamination of groundwater, the very source of water that Gazans use for domestic and agricultural purposes. (Ma’an News Agency)

The United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Robert Serry, who will leave his post at the end of the month, gave his last briefing to the Security Council. Looking back at seven years in this position he painted a stark picture, where after three failed US-led peace initiatives, each followed by a war in Gaza, the international community, represented by the Security Council, would need to take the lead and present a meaningful framework to resume negotiations. (United Nations)

The long-running conflict with Israel claimed the lives of more Palestinian civilians in 2014 than any year since 1967, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in a damning report on the humanitarian situation entitled “Fragmented Lives”. (AFP)

Saudi Arabia requested the Arab League to add a topic on Israeli authorities’ attempt to change the names of Jerusalem’s gates to Hebrew names on the agenda of its summit in Sharm el-Sheikh. (WAFA)

Israeli forces delivered six stop-construction notices to six houses in the Hebron Governorate. (WAFA)

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A 19-year-old Palestinian driver crashed his own car after an Israeli soldier stopped him, searched his car and forced him to drive him to the “Yitzhak” settlement, fearing that the soldier was trying to kidnap him. (IMEMC)

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius told reporters at UN Headquarters that his country would move forward on discussions with its partners on a possible Security Council resolution that could present a framework for negotiations towards resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. (AP)

The Israeli Prime Minister’s bureau announced that Israel would allow the transfer of hundreds of millions of shekels in tax revenues to the Palestinian Authority. (Haaretz)

The Human Rights Council adopted resolutions on the “Right of the Palestinian people to self-determination”, “Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory and in the occupied Syrian Golan”, the “Human rights situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem”, and “Human rights in the occupied Syrian Golan”. (www.ohchr.org)

Thousands of Palestinian and international runners participated in the Palestine Marathon in Bethlehem, which was started in 2013 by Danish aid workers under the theme “Right to Movement”. OCHA OPT said in a statement: “Article 13 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says that everyone should be able to move around and reside anywhere within their country. … Running a marathon in Bethlehem highlights how freedom of movement of Palestinian women, men, girls and boys continues to be severely restricted under Israel’s prolonged military occupation. Marathon runners often “hit the wall” under the physical and emotional strain of the 42-kilometre course. But in the occupied Palestinian territory you literally hit the Wall well before that distance”. (Ma’an News Agency, www.ochaopt.org)

The US, the EU and the Quartet welcomed Israel’s decision to transfer Palestinian tax funds US State Department acting deputy spokesman Jeff Rathke said “We hope that both sides will be able to build on this and work together to lower tensions and find a constructive path forward.” EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini said “Finally, after three months, this step will ensure vital relief for thousands of Palestinian Authority workers and their families.” Mideast Quartet Representative Tony Blair said, “I hope this will be the first of many steps, on both sides, that will mean we can work with renewed vigor to create the conditions for proper negotiations as we progress towards a two state solution.” (The Jerusalem Post, Reuters)

The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) submitted a report entitled “Trapped and Punished: The Gaza Civilian Population under Operation Protective Edge” to the International Criminal Court, detailing crimes and crimes against humanity by the Israeli military during Operation Protective Edge. (www.fidh.org)

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Israeli forces launched a wide detention campaign in the West Bank that began and ended today at dawn, detaining 27 Palestinians. (Palestine News Network)

The Israeli army opened fire towards agricultural land east of Shajaiyeh in the northern Gaza Strip, causing damage. (WAFA)

At an Arab League Summit in Sharm El-Sheikh, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said, “We have decided to re-evaluate our economic, political and security relationship with Israel, and will be holding elections as soon as possible.” Speaking against normalizing relations with Israel, he said, “We are looking forward to activating an Arab financial security net.” (Ma’an News Agency)

In his remarks to the Arab League Summit in Sharm El-Sheikh, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said, “Seven months after the end of yet another war with Israel, Gaza remains a tinderbox – and the situation is getting worse by the day. Neither blockade nor military action has made either side safer. I call on donors to make good on the pledges they made in Cairo last October. Help bring Gaza back to life. Israeli settlements in the occupied territories are illegal and constitute a serious impediment to peace. The Arab-Israeli peace process is further threatened by calls to discard or undermine the two-state solution endorsed by the international community and outlined in the visionary Arab Peace Initiative that you adopted in your 2002 summit. Once again, I urge Israel to end what is now nearly half a century of occupation. I urge the Palestinians to overcome their divisions. And I call upon the friends and supporters of both to push for a just and lasting solution based on international law.” (SG Spokesperson’s Office)

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin told an Arab League Summit in Sharm el-Sheikh that his country will support efforts to build a Palestinian State with a capital in East Jerusalem. (JTA)

President Mahmoud Abbas said that he doubted Israel’s willingness to unblock unpaid taxes, “so far they have unlocked nothing”. He expected they might impose a number of conditions before releasing the funds (The Daily Star)

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European Union Ambassador to Israel Lars Faaborg-Andersen said that the EU was not currently reassessing its approach to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict but if Israel continues to expand settlements, it will intensify its efforts to pressure Israel. He said that the EU is committed to the two-State solution and supports a UN Security Council resolution demanding the speedy creation of a Palestinian State. (The Times of Israel)

Haaretz reported that the Israeli Government had asked the High Court of Justice for permission to demolish the ancient Palestinian village of Sussia and relocate its residents to Yatta, near Hebron, allowing for more archaeological work at the site. (Haaretz)

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Israeli police and soldiers quelled with tear gas a demonstration in Huwwara, south of Nablus, to mark the 39th anniversary of Land Day, during which hundreds of protesters were planting olive tree saplings on land Israel threatened to confiscate. Soldiers also beat some of the demonstrators. (WAFA)

Senior Palestinian officials denied Israeli media reports saying that the Palestinians have agreed to halt efforts to get Israeli charged with war crimes in exchange for Israel’s unfreezing part of the tax revenues collected on behalf of the PA. The officials said the reports were false, “We continue to seek membership of the International Criminal Court and we expect the ICC to open an investigation into Israeli settlements, as well as the recent war in Gaza”. (Haaretz)

In an interview with The Washington Post, UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Robert Serry said, “The problem is if you know the horse you are riding — the two-state solution — is a dead horse, and you want to jump on another one, what is the other horse? It is a one-state reality. And we already see what that means for the Israelis and the Palestinians.” He suggested that the United Nations could propose the broad outlines of a peace plan, should conditions permit it. (The Washington Post)

The Palestinian Ministry of Civil Affairs announced that some 15,000 families whose homes were destroyed during the 50-day offensive in Gaza were to receive financial support for a year. Gaza official, Yousef Ibrahim, said the project was being financed by international donors and would provide home owners with $250 to 1,500 shekels per month. (Ma’an News Agency)

Islamic Jihad criticized Palestinian President Abbas over his latest call for Arab countries to carry out “Decisive Storm” in the Gaza Strip to end the Palestinian internal division. Daud Shehab, Islamic Jihad’s spokesman, said, “Abbas’ poisoned remarks represent a coup against national unity efforts and internal concord.” (Middle East Monitor)

Israeli forces shot and injured three Palestinians in Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip. An Israeli military spokesperson said forces had fired towards a “main instigator” of a violent riot in southern Gaza. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Israeli Jerusalem municipality approved the building of 142 new housing units in the “Har Homa” settlement in East Jerusalem. (WAFA)

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The Israeli army arrested three Palestinians in Nablus and a woman in East Jerusalem. (WAFA)

Four days after Israel announced it would stop withholding hundreds of millions of dollars in unpaid tax funds to the Palestinian Authority, the payment remained held up over a dispute regarding the size of the PA’s unpaid electric bill. A Palestinian source said that the Israeli demand for electricity costs was far too high for the PA, according to Israel Radio. Multiple sources said the two sides were still NIS400 million ($100 million) apart on their demands over the amount to be transferred. (The Times of Israel)

According to diplomatic sources in New York, the United States may push a renewed discussion of the Saudi initiative to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The US would not initiate the move itself but would “make sure” that another western state would introduce the move, according to the sources. (The Jerusalem Post)

Israeli authorities banned five Palestinians from Jerusalem from entering the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound for periods ranging from 10 to 90 days. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces demolished part of a home in the Wadi al-Joz neighbourhood, east of Jerusalem’s Old City. Two family members were beaten by Israeli soldiers. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces demolished the foundations of three apartments under construction in the Jabal al-Mukkabir neighbourhood in East Jerusalem. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces detained three Palestinian merchants at the Erez crossing in the northern Gaza Strip. The three had obtained merchant permits in advance. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Freedom Flotilla Coalition said former Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki would take part in the third “Freedom Flotilla” attempting to break the Israeli blockade of Gaza. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces fired machine guns and artillery shells towards houses and agricultural land east of the town of Qarara in the southern Gaza Strip, causing damage. (Al Ray)

In a report entitled “Under Fire“, British NGO Actions on Armed Violence said that civilians living under Israeli occupation in the Gaza Strip faced a greater risk to their lives in the wake of a recent shift in Israel’s military rules of engagement. The IDF launched almost five and a half times as many “high explosive artillery shells” during its military assault on Gaza in 2014 as it did during its military offensive against Gaza in 2008/2009, according to the report. (RT)

The Palestinian Cabinet rejected Israel’s unilateral decision to transfer the Palestinian Authority’s tax revenues after deducting almost 300 million shekels ($75 million), describing it as a collective punishment against Palestinians and a blatant violation of previous agreements and international resolutions. (WAFA)

Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador to Egypt said the Saudi Development Fund had transferred $60 million to the Palestinian Authority’s budget. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Palestinian Prisoner’s Club said Israeli authorities had issued administrative detention orders against 121 Palestinians since the beginning of March. (WAFA)

The United Nations Seminar on Assistance to the Palestinian People, focusing on “Speeding up relief, recovery and reconstruction in post-war Gaza”, opened in the United Nations at Vienna. In a message delivered by UNOV Director-General Yury Fedotov, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged donors to honour their commitments and called for the full opening of the crossings into Gaza. He also emphasized the need to break the cycle of “build-destroy, build-destroy, build-destroy”, which caused so much needless suffering and waste in Gaza. (UN press release GA/PAL/1328)

Israeli soldiers injured a child during a raid on a West Bank Bedouin village near Abu Dis. The child was taken to a hospital unconscious. The soldiers also confiscated 12 portable solar panels donated to residents by a local organization. (Ma’an News Agency)


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