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Source: Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)
8 January 2013



    UNITED NATIONS
    Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    occupied Palestinian territory

PROTECTION OF CIVILIANS WEEKLY REPORT


التقرير الأسبوعي لحماية المدنيين


2-8 JANUARY 2013


Key issues

Three people were killed and at least 20 injured as a result of a heavy storm that hit the region. In the West Bank, thousands were temporarily displaced from their residences due to flooding.

One child was killed and five other Palestinians injured by UXOs in the Gaza Strip.

Arrest operations trigger violent clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces in various West Bank areas, resulting in dozens of injuries.



WEST BANK

Arrest operations trigger clashes resulting in multiple injuries

The On 2 January, clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces in the industrial area of Jenin City resulted in 23 Palestinian injuries, including 11 children and an elderly woman (80) bitten by a dog accompanying the Israeli forces (the woman was evacuated to an Israeli hospital). The clashes erupted during an arrest operation carried out by an Israeli undercover unit. A similar incident occurred the day before in Tammun village (reported last week), resulting in dozens of injuries. Seven other Palestinians were injured this week during clashes with Israeli forces in the course of search-and-arrest operations inside Hebron City, in Beit Ummar village (Hebron) and in Al ‘Isawiya village of East Jerusalem. Overall, Israeli forces conducted a total of 95 search and arrest operations during the week, up by 18 per cent compared to the weekly average during 2012.

Palestinian Fatalities by Israeli forces
This week: 0
In 2013 (to date): 0
Equivalent 2012 period: 0

Palestinian Injuries by Israeli forces
This week: 53
Weekly average
2012: 58
2011: 30
Total in 2013: 113
Total in 2012: 3,032

Search and arrest operations by Israeli forces
This week: 95
Weekly average
2012: 78
2011: 89

Also this week, 14 Palestinians were injured in three clashes that erupted between Palestinians and Israeli forces following the intervention of the latter in confrontations between Palestinians and Israeli settlers. These included two clashes on 2 January near Yasuf (Salfit) and Al Mazra’a al Qibliya (Ramallah) villages and another on 5 January near Qusra village (Nablus). Three other Palestinians were injured in clashes in Abu Dis village (Jerusalem) and Ras al ‘Amud (East Jerusalem) in the course of demonstrations in solidarity with prisoners, a few of whom have been on a hunger strike for more than 150 days.
In addition, this week an Israeli soldier was injured after Palestinians hurled a Molotov cocktail at a military tower at the entrance of Al Aroub refugee camp (Hebron). Following a separate incident involving the throwing of a Molotov cocktail at an Israeli settler house in the Silwan area (East Jerusalem), Israeli forces detained six Palestinians, including four children.

Three Palestinians injured in a settler attack against a house

A total of 18 Palestinians were injured during the week in incidents involving Israeli settlers, of whom 14 were injured by Israeli forces during clashes between Palestinians and settlers (see above). Three other Palestinians, including a four year old child, were injured in an incident on 2 January, during which settlers from Ahiya settlement outpost stoned a Palestinian house in the nearby Jalud village. The remaining injury was a shepherd stoned by settlers near Burin village (Nablus).

Settler-related violence*
Incidents resulting in Pal. casualties or property damage
This week: 6
Weekly average
2012: 7
2011: 8
Total in 2012: 353
*Excluding casualties by Israeli forces

Incidents resulting in Israeli casualties or property damage
This week: 6
Weekly average
2012: 1
2011: 1
Total in 2012: 49

Also this week, in three separate incidents in Al Manshiya, Jab’a (both in Hebron) and Qabalan (Nablus) villages, Israeli settlers vandalized six Palestinian-owned vehicles and wrote “price tag” graffiti. In another attack, settlers reportedly set fire to an agricultural room belonging to a family from Al Khader village (Bethlehem). In one incident on 2 January, Israeli forces detained four settlers after they tried to prevent Palestinians from plowing land near Esh Kodesh outpost (Nablus). Overall, OCHA recorded six settler attacks resulting in injuries and property damage, slightly below the weekly average of seven attacks recorded during 2012.
Additionally, Palestinians threw stones at Israeli-plated cars driving in the West Bank, causing injury to one Israeli near Beit ‘Ur el Fauqa (Ramallah) in one incident (on 4 January), and damaging two vehicles in Ramallah and Hebron in two other incidents.

One structure demolished in East Jerusalem

On 7 January, the Israeli authorities demolished a three-storey building under construction in the Ras al ‘Amud area of East Jerusalem for the lack of building permit, bringing the total number of structures demolished in East Jerusalem since the beginning of 2013 to six. No structure has been demolished in Area C so far this year.

Demolitions and related displacements
Structures demolished
This week: 1
Weekly average
2012: 12
2011: 12
Total in 2012: 598

People displaced
This week: 0
Weekly average
2012: 17
2011: 21
Total in 2012: 886

GAZA STRIP

Calm continues despite friction in access restricted areas

The overall situation inside the Gaza Strip remains calm, with no reports of Israeli air strikes or Palestinian rocket firing. However, friction along the fence separating Israel and the Gaza Strip continued. Since the ceasefire agreement reached on 21 November, Israel has allowed Palestinians to access areas up to 300 meters from the fence, while farmers are allowed to reach on foot and work their land as close as 100 meters from the fence. On 5 January, Israeli forces stationed near the fence in the Beit Hanoun area (North Gaza) shot at a municipal truck dumping solid waste 200 meters from the fence, injuring a Palestinian worker. In addition, Israeli forces entered a few hundred meters inside Gaza on one occasion and withdrew after leveling land. This week, no incident was recorded in the context of restrictions on access sea areas beyond six nautical miles from the shore.

One child killed and five injured by UXOs

In an incident on 5 January, a seven year-old Palestinian child was killed and four other Palestinians, including three children (one aged 9 and two 13) injured when an unexploded ordnance (UXO) from an old RPG shell they were playing with exploded, east of the Khan Younis area. Another child was injured in a similar incident in Al Bureij refugee camp on 6 January. These are the first casualties as a result of UXOs that occurred since the beginning of the year. In 2012, two Palestinians, including a child, were killed and 34 others, including 20 children, were injured by UXOs.

Palestinian Fatalities by Israeli forces
This week: 0
In 2013 (to date): 0
Equivalent 2012 period: 0

Palestinian Injuries by Israeli forces
This week: 1
Weekly average
2012: 34
2011: 9
Total in 2013: 1
Total in 2012: 1,753

Electricity cuts remain as high as eight hours per day

This week, Gaza Power Plant (GPP) has continued operating three out of four turbines (up from two turbines in last few weeks) due to an increased fuel supply, producing 90 out of 120 megawatts (MW). Despite this improvement, the majority of the population in the Gaza Strip has continued experiencing power cuts of up to eight hours per day due to the high demand on electricity during winter that reaches 360MW. Fuel shortages continue impeding the operation of the GPP at its full capacity. All of this week’s fuel supply to the GPP was transferred through the tunnels under the Gaza-Egypt border. Since 7 June, only 29 percent of the 30 million liters of fuel donated by the Qatari government have been received.

Limited agricultural exports allowed out

Between 30 December 2012 and 5 January 2013, a total of 13 truckloads of Gaza’s agricultural produce were allowed to exit via Israel to overseas markets. The ban on exports to Israel and West Bank markets continues. In 2012, a total of 254 truckloads of goods left Gaza, including 216 truckloads to overseas markets (largely cash crops), and only 34 truckloads of date bars and four of furniture for humanitarian projects in West Bank. This constitutes a monthly average of less than 21 truckloads compared to a monthly average of 1,090 in the first five months of 2007.

Movement of goods (Kerem Shalom Crossing)
Imports:
This week: 1,267
2012 weekly average: 1,095
2013 weekly average: 2,807
Jan.-May 2007 before the blockade: 2, 807

Exports:
Truckloads this week: 13
2012 weekly average: 5
Jan.-May 2007 before the blockade: 240

ACROSS THE OPT

Storm results in casualties, displacement and extensive damage to property

Multiple areas across the West Bank and Gaza Strip have been severely affected by the heavy storm that struck the region during the reporting period, one of the most severe recorded in recent decades. The storm resulted in three fatalities in the northern West Bank and at least 20 injuries (across the oPt). In the West Bank, initial reports indicate that thousands of people have been temporarily displaced in about 40 communities after losing their residences or being forced to evacuate their houses, due to the risk of flooding. In Gaza, while there are no reports of displacement, two houses partially collapsed and more than 170 houses have been affected by flooding resulting from heavy rain, affecting around 2000 people. In addition, damage to infrastructure, including roads and electricity infrastructure, cars, animal structures, greenhouses, crops, including trees, was reported across the oPt. Efforts to respond to the emerging needs are ongoing: the Palestinian Red Crescent Society distributed plastic sheets and blankets and UNRWA distributed food parcels to affected refugees across the West Bank and non-food items in the Gaza Strip. Initial reports indicate that many people in flooded houses, particularly in Rafah (Gaza) and the northern West Bank are in urgent need of food and non-food items. Due to the continuous rain, there are concerns over the limited capacity of the civil defense search and rescue operations due to the lack of equipment in Gaza. An assessment of the damage is underway.

Please note that the figures in this report are subject to changes upon the receipt of additional information.

For more information, please contact Mai Yassin at yassinm@un.org or +972 (0)2 5829962.





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