Demolitions of Palestinian-owned structures in Area C of the West Bank resumed after a two-week lull, targeting a Bedouin community in the Jerusalem periphery. The Israeli authorities intend to begin transferring 20 Bedouin communities in this area as of the beginning of 2012.
Settler-related violence in the context of olive harvesting continued, leaving two Palestinian injuries and over 120 Palestinian-owned olive trees damaged.
For the first time in recent months, Palestinian armed factions fired Grad rockets towards southern Israel. In response, the Israeli Air Force launched air strikes targeting a number of locations inside the Gaza Strip. No casualties were reported in both attacks.
Sporadic clashes between
Israeli forces and Palestinians continue
Clashes between Israeli forces and Palestinians throughout the West Bank, including in East Jerusalem, resulted this week in 21 Palestinian injuries. Ten of the injuries were sustained in a weekly demonstration in Kafr Qaddum (Qalqiliya governorate) against the closure of the village’s main entrance, leading to the Qeddumim settlement. Another four Palestinians were injured by Israeli forces, who intervened in a confrontation between Palestinians, together with international and Israeli activists, and Israeli settlers next to Esh Kodesh settlement outpost (Nablus governorate). Also this week, a four-year-old Palestinian girl from the Bedouin community of ‘Anata village (Jerusalem governorate) was injured in the neck by live ammunition. Circumstances of the incident and identity of the perpetrator are still unclear.
In addition, clashes between Israeli forces and Palestinian villagers from the ‘seam zone’ community of Dhaher al Malih (Jenin governorate) at a Barrier checkpoint resulted in four Palestinian injuries. The clashes started after a group of villagers, who were participating in a funeral procession towards a cemetery on the ‘Palestinian’ side of the Barrier, were temporarily denied access through the checkpoint. Overall this week, Israeli forces conducted over 50 search-and-arrest operations in West Bank cities and villages, around 60 per cent of the weekly average for such operations since the beginning of the year.
Calm in Gaza continues
The Gaza Strip witnessed another calm week, during which there were no reports of casualties, Israeli air strikes or incursions inside the Gaza Strip, or rocket firing by Palestinian armed factions towards southern Israel.
Israeli restrictions on Palestinian access to areas up to 1,500 meters from the fence separating Israel and the Gaza Strip, and fishing areas beyond three nautical miles from the shore continue to hinder the livelihoods of thousands of people. In two separate incidents, Israeli forces opened warning fire towards farmers and workers collecting scrap metal, resulting in no injuries. No incidents affecting fishermen were reported.
Tunnels continue to claim
lives; one killed
On 24 October, a Palestinian worker was killed when a tunnel under the Gaza-Egypt border collapsed. Since the beginning of 2011, 33 Palestinians have been killed and 50 others injured in tunnel-related incidents, including air strikes, tunnel collapses and electrocution. While tunnel activity has declined since the Israeli decision to ease the blockade on 20 June 2010, it remains a main source for the transfer of goods and construction materials that are still restricted through the official crossings with Israel, as well as fuel that is significantly cheaper to buy from Egypt than from Israel.