Question of Palestine home || Permalink || About UNISPAL || Search

Follow UNISPAL RSS Twitter

Source: Division for Palestinian Rights (DPR)
30 November 2012



Division for Palestinian Rights

Chronological Review of Events Relating to the
Question of Palestine

Monthly media monitoring review

November 2012

Monthly highlights

• “Right of return” comment by PA President Abbas sparks protests in Gaza (5 November)

• Israeli cabinet ministers agree in principle on a range of retaliatory actions against the PA over their UN bid (6 November)

• Israel's Ministry of Housing publishes tenders for the construction of 1,285 new settlement units (6 November)

• Palestine circulates to UN Member States draft resolution requesting upgrade of its UN status (7 November)

• Hamas’ military chief is killed in an Israeli air strike marking the beginning of Israel’s “Operation Pillar of Defence” (14 November)

• Israel and Hamas agree to a ceasefire deal (21 November)

• Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People commemorates the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People at UN Headquarters (29 November)

• General Assembly upgrades the status of Palestine to that of a non-member observer State (30 November)

• Israel authorizes construction of 3,000 new settlement units, including preliminary zoning and planning work, in East Jerusalem and settlement blocks
including “Ma’ale Adumim” and the “E1” corridor (30 November)

1

Israeli soldiers entered the West Bank districts of Hebron, Bethlehem, Tulkarm and Ramallah, searching homes and detaining 11 Palestinians. The army also attacked the Ahmad Yassin Mosque in the town of Ithna, south of Hebron. (IMEMC)

According to the Israeli army, a relative of a Palestinian man who was arrested during a raid in the West Bank tried to stab an Israeli soldier. (Ma'an News Agency)

Israeli warships opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats off the coast of the As-Sudaniya area in northern Gaza. No casualties were reported. (Palestine News Network)

Israeli forces arrested a young Palestinian at the entrance of the Ibrahimi Mosque in the old city of Hebron and searched several houses in Ethna village in the same Governorate. (Palestine News Network)

According to local sources, Israeli forces raided the village of Beit Ummar in Hebron and searched several homes, arresting at least 11 Palestinians. (Palestine News Network, IMEMC)

A member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, Rabah Mhanna, said that Hamas was not interested in reconciling with Fatah at this time. (Palestine News Network)

The Carter Center issued a press release commending the 15 Christian leaders who recently urged the US Congress to investigate human rights violations by Israelis against Palestinians that violated US law. (WAFA)

Rabah Mhanna, a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, said that Hamas was unconcerned about reconciliation at this time because the movement was preoccupied with preparations for Hamas’ internal elections and its attempt to pursue a truce with Israel for 20 years. (Palestine News Network)

Speaking to Israeli TV Channel 2, Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas said, when asked whether he wanted to live in his boyhood town of Safad in the Galilee, “I visited Safad before once. But I want to see Safad. It's my right to see it, but not to live there'', adding, “Palestine now for me is 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital. This is now and forever ... This is Palestine for me. I am (a) refugee, but I am living in Ramallah. I believe that [the] West Bank and Gaza is Palestine and the other parts [are] Israel.'' Mr. Abbas also said that as long as he was in power, “there will be no armed, third armed Intifada. Never''. “We don't want to use force. We don't want to use weapons. We want to use diplomacy. We want to use politics. We want to use negotiations. We want to use peaceful resistance. That's it.'' Paul Hirschson, a spokesman for Israel's Foreign Ministry, said, “If he [Mr. Abbas] wants to see Safad, or anywhere else in Israel, for that matter, we would happily show him anywhere. But there has to be a desire to move forward on the peace process.'' As Abbas is not an Israeli citizen, Mr. Hirschson added, “he doesn't have a right to live in Israel. We agree on that.'' In Gaza, Hamas said that Mr. Abbas spoke only for himself and that the movement did not recognize Israel and had regularly exchanged fire with it. “No Palestinian would accept ceding the right of our people to return to homes, villages and towns from which they were displaced,'' said Hamas Spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri. (Reuters)

Jordan rejected an Israeli plan to establish a military academy on the Mount of Olives in East Jerusalem, Petra News Agency reported. Mount of Olives was part of Palestinian lands occupied in 1967, Jordanian Information Minister and Government Spokesperson Samih Maayatah said, noting that these lands had been designated as occupied territory by the United Nations and international law. (Xinhua)

According to a report issued by the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, total foreign liabilities in the form of stocks held by non-residents invested in Palestinian enterprises amounted to $2,571.5 million at the end of 2011. (WAFA)

According to the Israeli police and army, Israeli security forces demolished two structures which had been erected without permission near the “Yitzhar” settlement, sparking protests and resulting in the arrest of six settlers. (IMEMC, Ma'an News Agency, ReliefWeb, The Daily Star, The Jerusalem Post, Xinhua)

Israeli forces demolished, for the sixth time, a house in the West Bank village of Anata, north-east of Jerusalem. (Ma’an News Agency)

According to local sources, a group of settlers from the “Kedumim” settlement assaulted farmers in Jeit village, east of Qalqiliya. (Ma'an News Agency)

The PA Minister of Economy, Jawad al-Naji, welcomed a report by 22 non-governmental organizations calling on the European Union to ban products made in settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory. (Ma'an News Agency)

Israeli soldiers detained Dalaal Zamel, the mother of prisoner Mahran Abu Khamis, at a flying roadblock installed west of Nablus. Soldiers also apprehended Shereen Halahla, the wife of former political prisoner Tha’er Halahla, upon her return to the West Bank from a visit to Jordan. (IMEMC)

The Ahrar Center for Detainees’ Studies and Human Rights reported that Israeli soldiers, during the month of October, arrested 292 Palestinians, including 26 children, across the West Bank. (IMEMC)

A delegation of the Bahraini Royal Charity Organization visited Gaza and inaugurated three projects to serve 9,000 Palestine refugees in the Gaza Strip through the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). The delegation inaugurated a school, a library and a clinic. (Xinhua)

2

An Israeli man was stabbed and seriously wounded by two attackers in the Ras-al-Amud quarter, a mainly Arab area of East Jerusalem, police said. Israeli police Spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said, "Police are combing the area to try to find two young, unidentified men who fled the area after the attack." Asked if the attackers were thought to be Palestinians, Mr. Rosenfeld said that it was still unknown who stabbed the Israeli but that they had acted "in a way that indicated nationalist motivation". (AFP)

A 22 year-old Palestinian man was seriously wounded by cross-border fire from an Israeli tank, east of Bureij refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip, a spokesman for the Gaza health ministry said. An Israeli army spokeswoman said that troops in the area had fired at a person approaching the fence who they believed had attempted to plant an explosive charge. (AFP)

Israel acknowledged for the first time that its commandos had killed Khalil al-Wazir [better known as Abu Jihad], the deputy of the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat in a 1988 seaborne raid in Tunisia. Israel’s military censor had only now cleared the information to be published in the daily Yediot Ahronot. (AP)

A clergyman from the Church of the Holy Sepulchre said that its bank account had been frozen as a result of a long-standing dispute with an Israeli water company which demanded around $2.4 million. The move had impaired the Church’s ability to pay bills and salaries, and it was considering closing for a day in protest. Greek Orthodox Patriarch Theophilos III wrote to the leaders of Cyprus, Greece, Israel, Jordan, the Russian Federation and the United States with an appeal to intervene. Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman said that Moscow would not remain indifferent to the request. (AP, RIA Novosti)

Israeli forces, accompanied by Civil Administration personnel, entered the Khelit Harb area and distributed demolition orders for seven Palestinian houses in the Ethna village, west of Hebron. The orders were issued alleging that the houses had been built without a license. (Palestine News Network)

A security officer from “Alei Zahav” settlement arrested a Palestinian man while he had been trying to cut the settlement's fence. (Ynetnews.com)

After meeting with the Governor of the southern Gaza province, the chief of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Khan Yunis, Enrique Lomana, said that ICRC was not aware of any cancellation of prisoners’ family visits by Israel. Rather, ICRC had organized a visit the previous week that had gone on without obstacles, and another visit the following week had been approved by Israeli authorities. (Ma’an News Agency)

3

PA Presidential Spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeineh said that the PA would soon expose "secret talks" between Israel and Arab and Palestinian elements, including Hamas, aimed at preventing the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) from submitting its proposal to upgrade it UN status. (Ynetnews)

“[Abbas'] courageous words prove that Israel has a real partner for peace,'' Israeli President Shimon Peres said. “These are significant words ... We must all treat them with the utmost respect.'' (Reuters)

Settlers raided the Nablus village of Urif, injuring one man, PA official Ghassan Daghlas said. (Ma’an News Agency)

4

Palestinians threw three Molotov cocktails at Israeli vehicles near Bethlehem, Israel Radio reported. The attack caused no injuries or damage. (The Jerusalem Post)

Israeli forces detained at least 12 Palestinians across the West Bank during the night, locals and the army said. (Ma’an News Agency)

“I watched President Abbas’ interview over the weekend. I have heard that he has already managed to go back on his remarks [on the right of return],” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his Cabinet. Minister for Foreign Affairs Avigdor Liberman accused President Abbas of interfering in the coming Israeli elections. (The Jerusalem Post)

Amr Moussa, former Secretary-General of the League of Arab States, arrived in the West Bank to meet President Abbas and other senior officials. He arrived in Ramallah with a delegation of Arab dignitaries, including former Jordanian Prime Minister Abed al-Salam al-Majali. (Ma’an News Agency)

Some of the fuel donated by Qatar for the Gaza Strip had been held up in the Sinai as a result of unrest, Egyptian security officials said. (Ma’an News Agency)

5

Israeli soldiers shot and killed an unarmed, mentally disturbed 20-year-old Palestinian who had approached a fence near Gaza's border with Israel, medics said. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said that during the night an Israel Air Force aircraft struck a Palestinian rocket launching pad and two militant activity sites in the Gaza Strip after Gaza militants had fired some 15 rockets and mortars into southern Israel striking open areas. Two more rockets struck Israel shortly after the attack on Gaza. Hamas’ military wing claimed responsibility for the rockets. (Haaretz)

Syrian security forces reportedly broke into and closed the Damascus offices of Hamas. They also broke into the home of the head of the Hamas Political Bureau, Khaled Mashaal, confiscated equipment and his car, and that of the deputy head, Mousa Abu Marzouq. (IMEMC)

"Yesterday I invited President Abbas to start direct negotiations without preconditions," Prime Minister Netanyahu told Reuters in Jerusalem. "Unfortunately, I have still not heard back from the Palestinian side.... I hope they won't go to one-sided action in the UN because that will only push peace back and will only produce unnecessary instability," he said. President Abbas’ spokesman Abu Rudeineh said, "When we return from the UN General Assembly and are a non-member State based on 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as the capital, the way to direct negotiations will be open to achieve security and stability on this basis." (The Jerusalem Post)

PA President Abbas met with Jordan’s Minister for Foreign Affairs Nasser Judeh and discussed the Palestinian efforts to seek a status upgrade at the UN. (Xinhua)

During his meeting in Cairo with Moussa Abu Marzouq, the Deputy Head of Hamas’ Political Bureau, Russian Federation Minister for Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov said that the Palestinian issue cannot be resolved without unifying all Palestinian factions. According to MENA, Mr. Lavrov said that Hamas was capable of playing a vital role in the Palestinian issue. (Xinhua)

The Obama Administration and the European Union were reported to be pushing PA President Abbas to postpone his UN bid. One of the arguments was that launching such a move before the Israeli elections would play into the hands of Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and Foreign Minister Liberman, put an end to efforts to restart peace talks and weaken leftist and centrist forces. (Ynetnews)

"No matter what pressure we are facing ... we will not go back on our decision [on the UN bid]," PLO Executive Committee member Saeb Erakat said in Amman after talks between PA President Abbas and League of Arab States Secretary-General Nabil Elaraby. President Abbas and Secretary-General Elaraby discussed and agreed on a number of legal and diplomatic measures related to the UN move, Mr. Erakat said. Mr. Elaraby, meanwhile, said that the League’s Ministers would meet at their Cairo headquarters on 12 November to discuss the bid and would be joined the following day by representatives of the European Union for more talks. "It is time for Palestine to obtain such recognition at the United Nations," he said. (AFP)

Hamas authorities denied reports that their security forces had prevented Fatah Central Committee member Amal Hamad from leaving the Gaza Strip. Ms. Hamad had waited at the Palestinian side of the Erez crossing for two hours before she was turned back, Fatah said. She was to travel to a Central Committee meeting in the West Bank. (Ma’an News Agency)

PA Finance Minister Nabil Qasis said that it was too early to set a date for the payment of October salaries and that the announced donation of $42 million from the United Arab Emirates would help the PA with payments, but it had many financial obligations alongside public sector salaries. (Ma’an News Agency)

Comments made by PA President Abbas on his right to return to live in the town his family was forced to flee in 1948 sparked protests in Gaza where people in refugee camps burned his images. He was also denounced on Twitter by pro-Palestinian activists. President Abbas insisted that the comments he had made in an interview with Israeli TV had been selectively quoted and that the remarks were his personal stance, rather than a change of policy. (The Guardian)

Six Palestinian cars were vandalized during the night in the Shu’fat neighbourhood of East Jerusalem in an attack that bore the hallmarks of a hate crime by right-wing Israeli extremists. (AFP)

A group of EU heads of mission in Jerusalem and Ramallah visited the West Bank community of Khan-Al-Ahmar, located in Area C, and gained first-hand impression of the Bedouin village of Khan-Al-Ahmar and the school serving some 90 children of the community. The diplomats met with representatives of the Jahalin Bedouin community and were briefed on the latest legal proceedings and Israeli plans for potential displacements. (WAFA)

Mumbai will host the International Conference for Justice and Peace in Palestine on 17 and 18 November that would be organized by the India and Palestine Solidarity Forum. (Fars News Agency)

6

A Qassam rocket was fired from the Gaza Strip into southern Israel. There were no reports of damage or injuries. (The Jerusalem Post)

Three IDF soldiers were injured in an explosion near the border fence with the southern Gaza Strip. An IDF force fired back at suspicious targets. (Ynetnews)

Israeli forces arrested 13 Palestinians from across the West Bank, including two children and five teenagers, according to Palestinian security sources. (IMEMC, Palestine News Network, WAFA)

Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Lavrov, speaking following his meeting with the PA President Abbas in Amman, said that “Russia has no doubt in Palestine’s statehood. We recognized Palestinian State when it was proclaimed in 1988. [...] it is very important that President Abbas once again firmly confirmed his readiness for the re-launch of direct talks with Israel [...]. We support such a course of action”. (The MFA of the Russian Federation)

Army Radio reported that Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu convened a meeting of eight senior Ministers during which the Ministers reached an agreement in principle on a range of retaliatory actions against the PA over their UN bid, including freezing the distribution of funds to the PA, revoking the special privileges of senior Palestinian leaders and the adoption of the Levy Report [on settlements]. (Reuters, The Jerusalem Post, Haaretz)

A protest outside the Parliament building in Gaza which was organized by women activists, including the General Union of Palestinian Women, to demand national reconciliation, was reportedly harshly dispersed by Hamas police officers. (Ma'an News Agency)

Israel's Ministry of Housing published tenders for the construction of 1,285 new settlement units, including 607 units in “Pisgat Ze'ev” and 606 units in “Ramot” in Jerusalem; and 72 units in “Ariel” in the West Bank. (Haaretz)

Muhammad Shtayyeh, member of the Fatah Central Committee, commented on the latest Israeli decision on the construction of new settlement units: “This is all Netanyahu and Liberman have to offer: the destruction of the two-State solution and the imposition of an apartheid regime." Mr. Shtayyeh further said: "The Israeli Government's decision … is another reason why Palestine must go to the United Nations.” (Palestine News Network)

PA Presidential Spokesman Abu Rudeineh and PLO Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi condemned the submission of tenders for the construction of 1,213 housing units in illegal Israeli settlements built on occupied East Jerusalem land. “The new tenders in East Jerusalem and the overall settlement activities adopted by the Israeli Government are what push the PA to seek the UN non-member State status”, said Mr. Abu Rudeineh. (Ma'an News Agency, WAFA)

The Ma’an Mix Satellite TV station aired a video documenting several Israeli settlers breaking into a Palestinian residential building in East Jerusalem and attacking seven members of the family living in the building. The settlers had carried a court order granting them ownership but had not waited for the police to evict the family. (IMEMC)

Israeli soldiers demolished two Palestinian homes, a barn and two wells, and handed demolition orders against four more homes in the villages of Ad-Deerat and Al-Jawaya, south of Hebron, in the southern part of the West Bank. (IMEMC, WAFA)

Settlers from “Karmei Tzur”, protected by Israeli soldiers, stole olive crops from land belonging to Palestinians north of Hebron, according to local sources. (WAFA)

A report published by B'Tselem, the Israeli Information Centre for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories entitled “Arrested development: the long-term impact of Israel’s separation barrier in the West Bank,” stated that the separation Wall had caused "unnecessary suffering" to the Palestinian people. The Wall had "cut social ties and isolated villages from their farmland and citizens from their livelihoods". (Middleeastmonitor.com)

A Turkish court had launched the trial in absentia of four former Israeli military commanders over the deaths of nine Turkish activists on board a ship bound for Gaza in 2010. “This is not a trial but a show trial and has nothing to do with law and justice," Israeli Foreign Ministry Spokesman Yigal Palmor told AFP. "The so-called accused have not been notified or informed in any way that they are going to face charges or what the nature of the charges is," he added. (The Guardian, The Jerusalem Post)

Amnesty International demanded the immediate and unconditional release of Palestinian activist Bassem Tamimi whom an Israeli military court had sentenced to four months in prison for his part in a protest near a settlement in the West Bank in October. The organization said that Mr. Tamimi had been a victim of a "campaign of harassment, intimidation and arbitrary detention" by the Israeli authorities. (BBC)

7

Israeli soldiers detained four Palestinians during raids in Hebron, Bethlehem, Jericho, Ramallah and Tulkarm. (IMEMC)

PA President Abbas congratulated US President Barack Obama on his re-election victory and expressed hope that the US President would continue his efforts to achieve peace in the Middle East. Palestinian Chief Negotiator Erakat said that he hoped that President Obama's re-election would mean the creation of a Palestinian State in the next four years. (AFP, Ma'an News Agency, WAFA)

Quartet Representative Tony Blair said that US President Obama's re-election opened the way for renewed efforts to revive negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians. (Ma’an News Agency)

Hours after President Obama’s re-election, Israeli Minister of Defense Ehud Barak said on Israeli TV Channel 10 that Israel and the US must delay Palestinian statehood moves at the UN until after the Israeli elections. (The Jerusalem Post)

Speaking at a conference held at the Institute for National Security Studies, the US Ambassador to Israel, Dan Shapiro, said that US President Obama's re-election could move forward the stalled peace process. (Ynetnews)

Palestine circulated to UN Member States a draft resolution requesting an upgrade in its UN status to that of a non-member observer State and reiterating the Palestinian commitment to the two-State solution. The draft could be put for a vote later during the month. (Reuters)

Israeli TV Channel 7 reported that aides to Israeli Foreign Minister Liberman had said that the Foreign Minister had threatened to dissolve the PA if PA President Abbas insisted on going ahead with his request for non-member observer State status at the UN. (Middle East Monitor)

Hamas-affiliated Member of Parliament Yahia Mousa said that he would not welcome PA President Abbas to the Gaza Strip after the President was reported to have considered a joint visit with the Prime Minister of Turkey. (Ma’an News Agency)

Six hospitals in East Jerusalem were in a financial crisis due to PA’s inability to meet payments for their services, jeopardizing the healthcare of thousands of West Bank patients. The PA had reportedly accumulated an $18 million debt to the specialized health care centres during the year as a result of US sanctions and a shortfall of aid from Gulf States the previous year. (Gulf Times)

France condemned new Israeli settlement tenders for the construction of 1,285 homes in East Jerusalem and West Bank settlements. “France reaffirms its very grave concern at the provocative announcements and notices in an already tense situation. Israeli settlement activity – in all its forms – is illegal under international law. It is detrimental to efforts to restore trust between the parties and constitutes an obstacle to a just peace based on the two-State solution”, the statement said. (www.diplomatie.gouv.fr)

Norway’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Espen Barth Eide said: “I deplore the fact that Israel has once again approved the construction of a large number of new homes in East Jerusalem and the West Bank. The building of settlements on occupied land is a violation of international law and threatens the basis for a two-State solution”. (www.regjeringen.no)

UK Foreign Office Minister Alistair Burt said: "It is deeply disappointing that the Government of Israel continues to ignore the appeals of the UK and other friends of Israel", condemning its “provocative decision to advance settlement construction in East Jerusalem and the West Bank through the publication of tenders for 1,285 settlement housing units. The UK has been consistently clear that Israeli settlements are illegal under international law and by altering the situation on the ground are making the two-State solution, with Jerusalem as a shared capital, increasingly hard to realize”. (www.fco.gov.uk)

The new Foreign Affairs Minister of the Netherlands, Frans Timmermans, condemned Israel’s plans to build new housing in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, stating that such actions undermined the two-State solution. (www.expatica.com)

The PA Ministry for Agriculture had submitted a report to the International Fact-Finding Mission on Israeli Settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory appointed by the Human Rights Council. The report focused on Israel's protracted failure to comply with fundamental principles of the rule of law and human rights obligations related to its occupation of the Palestinian territory, repercussions of the Israeli occupation for the Palestinian people stemming from illegal settlement expansion, and Israel's responsibility to respect, protect and fulfil the human rights of Palestinians. (Palestine News Network)

Israeli settlers uprooted some 100 olive trees in the village of Al-Sawya, south of Nablus. (WAFA)

According to a local activist, Israeli forces issued eviction orders to 40 Palestinian families in the Tana locale, east of Nablus, ordering them to leave their homes by 10 November, as the area would be turned by the army into a training base. (WAFA)

Hundreds of Palestinian villagers from the northern Jordan Valley received orders from the Israeli army to leave their homes for the duration of a military training exercise to begin on 11 November. A thousand Palestinians would be displaced from the Aqaba and Yarza village, 57 families from the al-Hamamat, al-Burj and Humsa villages and 40 families in the Jordan Valley village of Khirbet Tana. (Ma'an News Agency)

Four prisoners held in Israeli jails remained on hunger strike demanding to be released, the Prisoners’ Club said. Ayman Sharawneh, from Hebron, was currently the prisoner on the longest hunger strike since 1 July, protesting his re-arrest after having been released in the swap of prisoners the previous year. (WAFA)

Seven Palestinians were injured and two others were arrested during confrontations that erupted between Palestinians and Israeli police in the East Jerusalem neighbourhood of Silwan, reportedly during a celebration to welcome the release of prisoner Mohammad Odeh. Israeli forces fired tear gas canisters and rubber bullets, causing the suffocation of seven Palestinians owing to gas inhalation. (WAFA)

The Princess Basma Jerusalem Centre for Disabled Children, Diakonia, and the European Union inaugurated a new department for children with autism. A statement by Diakonia said that the centre was fully equipped and that the staff had undergone the required training to provide services to children from East Jerusalem and the West Bank. (WAFA)

8

The military wing of Hamas, the Izz ad-Din Al-Qassam Brigades, said that it had detonated a roadside bomb east of Khan Yunis targeting Israeli troops in the southern Gaza Strip. The Brigades said that the operation was a response to Israeli incursions into Gaza and the killing of 13-year-old Hamid Younis Abu Daqqa earlier in the day. The boy was killed when he was hit by Israeli machine gunfire after Israeli forces had targeted houses and farms east of Khan Yunis. Palestinian medics said that the shot had been fired either from Israeli helicopters or tanks that had taken part in clashes. Military Spokeswoman Avital Leibovich said that the IDF had come under fire and had responded by firing at "suspicious locations". Asked about the boy's death, she said, "I cannot confirm that we targeted anyone. We don't have any information at all." (Ma’an News Agency)

Four Israeli military vehicles briefly penetrated the southern Gaza Strip, leading to clashes with Palestinians. No injuries had been reported. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces arrested a Palestinian youth from the West Bank town of Bethlehem. (Bahrain News Agency)

A joint IDF and Shin Bet operation led to the arrest of two Palestinians from the village of Azum in connection with the shooting of an Israeli car in late September. (Ynetnews)

Egyptian security sources reported that the army and the police, operating against armed criminal groups in the Sinai, would soon start a large operation to resume demolition of border tunnels with Gaza that were used for the smuggling of weapons between Gaza and the Sinai. (IMEMC)

In Athens, PA Foreign Minister Riyad Malki met with Greek Foreign Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos. Mr. Malki said that the Palestinian people would not accept any less right than those already earned by the people of the Arab Spring. Mr. Avramopoulos said that Greece’s position was “towards the creation of an independent and viable Palestinian State that could safely and peacefully coexist with Israel”, adding that the Palestinian issue was a priority for Greece. (greece.greekreporter.com)

In a speech before students at Columbia University in New York City, former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert asserted that Israel must reach an agreement with the Palestinians within four years. He said that the Palestinian case was the most important issue on the agenda ahead of Israeli elections, and stressed that in order to reach a peace agreement the Israeli Prime Minister must personally be involved in the negotiations with Palestinians. He also said that "time is running out for us, not the Palestinians", warning that if the two-State solution was not achieved, Israel ran the risk of becoming a binational State with a Palestinian majority. (Palestine News Network)

Israeli Foreign Minister Liberman warned that there would be “far-reaching implications” to the Palestinians’ bid to upgrade their UN status. “This unilateral step has broken the rules and crossed a red line,” Mr. Liberman said before heading to Vienna to attend an urgent meeting of Israeli ambassadors to Europe that he had called. (The Jerusalem Post)

In separate meetings with the Quartet Representative Blair, US Consul Michael Ratney and French Consul Frédéric Desagneaux, Chief Palestinian Negotiator Erakat said that Palestine's request for non-member observer State status at the UN did not contradict the two-State solution. He said that it was Israel's settlement policy that threatened the two-State solution. (Ma’an News Agency, WAFA)

EU Foreign Affairs Spokeswoman Maja Kocijancic said that European Ministers for Foreign Affairs would debate the Palestinian UN bid at a regular meeting in Brussels on 19 November, adding that "The EU maintains that negotiations remain the best way forward to resolve the Middle East peace process." At the same time, a senior EU diplomat said that the EU remained divided on the matter, noting that Member States' votes "will probably follow the same pattern as with UNESCO", referring to the admission of Palestine as a member the previous year. (euobserver.com)

Abbas Zaki, member of the Fatah Central Committee, said that the Oslo Accords would cease to exist the day after the UN voted in favour of upgrading the status of the Palestinian UN membership. Mr. Zaki said, "Once we become a recognized State, we will go to all UN agencies to force the international community to take legal action against Israel." Mr. Zaki denied that some Arab countries had been exerting pressure on the PA leadership to refrain from the statehood bid. (The Jerusalem Post)

Senior Fatah Official Nabil Sha’ath said that the United Kingdom was pressuring the PA to drop its UN bid and allow room for the US to launch new political initiatives, but that he did not expect anything new until 2013. "The PA will not postpone the UN bid as it is a strategic decision," Mr. Sha’ath said. (Ma’an News Agency)

A statement issued by the League of Arab States said that Secretary-General Elaraby and the secretariat staff would participate on 11 November in a stand of solidarity with the Palestinians at the League’s headquarters in Cairo. The stand aims at supporting the Palestinian National Youth week 2012. Mr. Elaraby will be delivering a speech via videoconference while PA President Abbas will inaugurate the festival, where Missions from 21 Arab States will be participating. (Xinhua)

Israeli forces cut down dozens of olive and almond trees from land belonging to Palestinians in the village of al-Nahalin, west of Bethlehem. (WAFA)

The European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton issued a statement regretting Israel’s publication of tenders to expand the settlements of “Ramot”, “Pisgat" and "Ze’ev” (www.consilium.europa.eu)

Ireland’s Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Eamon Gilmore, condemned the publication of tenders by the Israeli authorities for the construction of 1,285 settlement housing units in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank. (www.dfa.ie)

Spain condemned, in a statement by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, the publication of the Israeli Government tenders to build 1,285 housing units in two East Jerusalem settlements and one in the West Bank, stressing the illegitimacy of settlements under international law and calling for the need to stop any action that would jeopardize the viability of a two-State solution. (WAFA)

Turkey strongly condemned Israel over its decision to go ahead with the construction of more than 1,200 new homes for Jewish settlers in East Jerusalem and the West Bank. A statement released by the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs said that the move was “unacceptable” and a clear violation of international law. (www.mfa.gov.tr)

Armed settlers from the settlement of “Beit Hagai” attacked Palestinian farmers while they were picking olives and stole their olive crops in Al-Reheya village, south of Hebron. (WAFA)

Palestinians, mainly women, protested in front of the International Committee of the Red Cross Sub-delegation office in Gaza in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails. The protest was in reaction to the arrest, on 5 November, of Nawal Al-Saadi, a 50-year-old woman from the Jenin refugee camp. (presstv.com)

During the annual debate in the Special Political and Decolonization Committee (Fourth Committee) of the General Assembly, the Commissioner-General of UNRWA, Filippo Grandi, called for a just solution to the plight of the 5 million Palestine refugees. He expressed “extreme concern” that most of the 518,000 Palestine refugees in Syria were now directly caught up in the conflict. He paid special tribute to the five Palestinian UNRWA staff members killed in Syria, and pointed to two key challenges that hindered UNRWA’s ability to carry out its work: the scarcity of funds and the prevalence of conflict. (www.unrwa.org)

9

In a statement issued by the office of Israeli Defense Minister Barak, the Minister blamed Hamas for the detonation of an explosive tunnel along the Gaza border south of Kissufim which had slightly wounded a soldier, and said that was mulling how and when to respond. The blast, which had been claimed by the Izz ad-Din Al-Qassam Brigades had also thrown an army vehicle 20 metres into the air, although no one was inside it at the time. (AFP)

The IDF entered Hebron and searched several houses as well as the Hebron Municipality inspectors’ office. The IDF also entered into the village of Yatta, south of Hebron, and set up military checkpoints at the main entrances and at the main entrance of Beit Ummar village in the same Governorate. (Palestine News Network)

The Head of Palestinian Affairs of the League of Arab States, Mohammad Sobeih, said that 51 countries were undecided over the Palestinian bid to acquire UN non-member observer State status, while 115 States were expected to vote in favour and 27 were against the bid. Mr. Sobeih said that the undecided 51 States were hesitant because of US pressure. PA Economy Minister Jawad al-Naji said that the UN bid could exacerbate the PA’s financial crisis. He said that he expected further restrictions after the UN vote, and that Israel might stop transferring Palestinian tax revenues it collected on behalf of the PA. (Ma’an News Agency)

PLO Executive Committee member Wasel Abu Yousef said that the PA would not back down from its decision to request an upgrade for its UN status, "The decision is final and we are going to the UN in November". Mr. Abu Yousef was reacting to reports that the United States might ask the Palestinians to delay their proposal until President Barack Obama presented new ideas on reviving the stalled Palestinian-Israeli negotiations. He said that a draft proposal of the resolution for Palestine’s non-member observer State status had already been handed to the UN Missions. PA President Abbas had also sent envoys to several countries to seek their support for the UN resolution. (DPA)

At a press briefing, the Director of the General Assembly, Economic and Social Affairs, Ion Botnaru, in response to a question about the Palestinian request for upgraded membership, said that his office would address the issue only after a draft resolution had been tabled with the Secretariat. States must first negotiate the issue, issue an “L” document, and collect sponsors. Then, at the request of the sponsors, a plenary meeting would be scheduled. He said that a draft text could emerge when the General Assembly considered the question of Palestine and the Middle East. But generally, it was too early to answer the question. (UN News Centre)

The IDF handed orders demanding that the Husan village council, west of Bethlehem, remove a power grid saying that it was built in area C, which was under full Israeli control, according to member of the village council Taha Hamamreh. (WAFA)

10

Four Israeli soldiers were wounded when Gaza militants fired an anti-tank missile at their jeep near the Karni crossing. The military wing of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine took responsibility for the attack. IDF forces arrived at the scene and a heavy fire exchange followed, with the IDF using tanks and machine guns, killing four Palestinians and wounding 25 others. Ashraf al-Kidra, a Gaza health official, said that all four Palestinians killed were between the ages of 16 and 18, and that there had been children among the wounded. (AP, Ynetnews)

Israel Defense Minister Barak said: "We will not allow the escalation at the [Gaza] fence to go unanswered.” The Israeli military said it held Hamas responsible for the attack. Hamas Spokesman Fawzi Barhoum threatened to respond saying, “Targeting civilians is a dangerous escalation that cannot be tolerated. The resistance has the full right to respond to Israeli crimes.” (AP)

Acceding to a Palestinian official, Egypt had been trying to broker a ceasefire between the Palestinian factions and Israel. No deadline had yet been set for the commencement of the ceasefire. (AFP)

Israel's Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz said that Israel would stop collecting tax revenues for the PA and would not hand over any money if President Abbas went through with the UN bid. (Ma’an News Agency)

11

Israeli air strikes hit Palestinian targets in Gaza scoring direct hits on a "terror tunnel" and a weapons storage facility, a military representative said, adding that Palestinian militants had launched more than 110 rockets beginning the previous day. According to WAFA, the Palestinian death toll had since stood at 6, with more than 30 wounded, 10 of them critically. (CNN)

PA President Abbas’ Spokesman Abu Rudeineh said that in a telephone conversation, US President Obama had told PA President Abbas that his Administration opposed the Palestinian bid at the UN. Mr. Obama reaffirmed his commitment to Middle East peace and his strong support for direct negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians. (AFP)

According to PA President Abbas, the Russian Federation will join an international investigation to determine the cause of death of the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. (Reuters)

12

Gaza militants fired 11 rockets at southern Israel. One rocket exploded next to a house and two heading for Ashkelon were intercepted by the Iron Dome anti-missile system, the army said. Another rocket struck a factory causing damage. The armed wings of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine, the Popular Resistance Committees and the Islamic Jihad took responsibility for the attacks. (AFP, Ynetnews)

Hamas and Islamic Jihad, following a meeting called by Hamas, said that they were ready for a ceasefire if Israel "stops its aggression" against the territory and “ends the Gaza blockade”. (AFP, Haaretz)

Israeli officials were reportedly considering targeting prominent militants as well as a systematic attack on Gaza's infrastructures and Hamas institutions. The Knesset will hold a meeting on Thursday morning to discuss the escalation with Gaza, following a petition by over 25 Knesset members from Kadima, Labor and Meretz. Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin said that the upcoming elections should not deter the military from a wide-scale operation in Gaza. (The Jerusalem Post, Haaretz, The Washington Post)

Hamas had reportedly filed a complaint with the UN against Israeli attacks on civilians in the Gaza Strip, a spokesman, Taher al-Nunu, said. (Ma'an News Agency)

Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu told a group of ambassadors in Ashkelon that Israel would not accept the ongoing rocket fire from the Gaza Strip. Home Front Defense Minister Avi Dichter told them that Israel "cannot continue to accept a situation where the military terror entity called Gaza continues to exist between Israel and Egypt". Meanwhile, Vice Prime Minister Moshe Ya'alon warned that Israel had "a full box of tools ... that we have not yet used.” (The Jerusalem Post)

The Ambassador of Egypt to the PA, Yasser Othman, denied reports claiming that Egyptian efforts seeking a truce between Israel and Gaza had failed, as no official communication had taken place in this regard. (www.Alresalah.ps)

The following statement was issued by the office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General:


European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Ashton issued a statement expressing her concern about the latest escalation of violence between Gaza and Israel. (www.consilium.europa.eu)

According to Al-Hayat, PA President Abbas would be holding a meeting with Egypt’s President Mohamed Morsy to discuss the recent escalation in the Gaza Strip and southern Israel. (Palestine News Network)

Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud met with PA President Abbas in Riyadh where they discussed Palestinian issues and the obstacles facing peace in the region. (Saudi Press Agency)

The UK Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, William Hague, said: “I am very concerned by the violence in Gaza and southern Israel, and the reported death of a number of civilians, including a child, in Gaza. I condemn the indiscriminate firing of over 100 rockets into Israel by Gaza-based militants. The UK supports the Egyptian Government in its efforts to achieve a ceasefire. All sides need to demonstrate restraint to prevent a dangerous escalation that would be in no one’s interests.” (UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office)

In a statement, France strongly deplored the renewed escalation of violence in Gaza. It strongly condemned the firing of rockets from Gaza targeting the population of southern Israel. “We urge the parties to demonstrate the utmost restraint in order to avoid any further escalation. In this context, France is more concerned than ever about the spread of weapons toward Gaza”, said the statement. (The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of France)

According to WAFA, PA President Abbas will attend a meeting of the Arab League Follow-up Committee, which would be held in Cairo. Qatar's Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Prince Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al-Thani, will preside over the meeting. Mr. Abbas will discuss Palestine’s UN bid and the League of Arab States Secretary-General Elaraby will discuss the League’s support. (Ma’an News Agency)

PA President Abbas announced that the PA will present its UN bid for non-member observer State status despite US and Israeli opposition. Following talks with Secretary-General of the League of Arab States Elaraby in Cairo, he said that "it has been agreed that the request will be presented on November 29". "We don't want any confrontations with the United States or Israel. If we could start a dialogue or negotiations the day after the vote, we will", Mr. Abbas added. (AFP, Financial Times)

Israeli authorities kept the Kerem Abu Salim commercial crossing with Gaza closed owing to the deteriorating security situation. (Bahrain News Agency)

The European Union, the Netherlands and Sweden announced a donation of €19 million to the PA to help pay the October salaries of around 84,200 civil servants. (WAFA)

The IDF, accompanied by Israeli bulldozer and protected by Israeli forces, destroyed a water spring used by Palestinian residents for agricultural purposes in the Beit Anoun area, north of Hebron. (WAFA)

According to Peace Now Spokesman Lior Amihai, Israel was planning a fivefold expansion of the “Itamar” settlement in the northern West Bank. The plan, which had yet to be approved, would expand homes in “Itamar” from 137 to 675. According to Mr. Amihai, a Ministry of Defense committee would convene on 14 November to start preparing plans for the expansion. Israeli Defense Minister Barak had agreed to advance the plans. (AFP, Haaretz)

"During the current Government's term, we doubled the budgets allocated to [settlements],” Israeli Finance Minister Steinitz said. The Government had done it quietly, so that "elements in Israel and abroad" would not attempt to prevent it, Mr. Steinitz, who was honoured by the settlement movement for his contributions, added. (Haaretz)

More than 50 settlers, with IDF protection, entered the location of the evicted settlement of “Kadim,” east of Jenin, set up tents, blocked roads and stopped Palestinian traffic. (WAFA)

Speaking at the opening ceremony of a conference sponsored by Tunisia in support of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, Tunisia’s President, Moncef Marzouki, said that Tunisians stood by the Palestinians now more than ever, calling on the world to mobilize in order to resolve the Palestinian issue and avoid a never-ending war. (www.middleeastmonitor.com)

Seven Palestinian refugees had been killed in a refugee camp in Damascus, the Yarmouk coordination committee said. (Ma'an News Agency)

During the consideration of the annual report of the Special Committee to Investigate Israeli Practices Affecting the Human Rights of the Palestinian People and Other Arabs of the Occupied Territories, most speakers held that the Special Committee’s report was a “grim reminder” of the obstacles to peace, urged both parties to do the hard work necessary to advance the two-State solution, and warned that it was becoming “too dangerous” not to insist that Israel “do no less and no more” than was expected of other Member States in meeting its international law obligations. The representative of Israel expressed his disbelief at the accusations against Israel expressed during the meeting, described the debate as a “theatre of the absurd” and called it one-sided, adding that it “turned a blind eye” to the culpability of Palestinians, who had launched more than 1,000 rockets and mortar shells against Israeli towns and villages in the past year. (www.un.org)

13

Israel hit three targets in the Gaza Strip in response to rocket fire during the night. A Palestinian health official said that a militant had died of wounds sustained in an Israeli air strike two days earlier. (AP, DPA)

Mohammed Shtayyeh, a senior official and a member of the Palestinian team working on the UN resolution, said: "We are not going back to humiliating negotiations; there will either be meaningful negotiations or no negotiations at all”, adding that “most of the declared measures against the PA will be empty threats, rather than serious ones, because Israel has a vested interest in maintaining the status of the PA". (Reuters)

US State Department Spokesman Mark Toner said that Special Envoy David Hale would meet with President Abbas the following day in Switzerland. "We're still at the stage where we're actively trying to convince them that this is a bad idea, that this is not going to get them the results ultimately that they seek," Mr. Toner said. "We've been clear in the past about … some of the consequences that this would generate”. (AP)

China said that it supported the Palestinian bid for UN non-member observer State status, with a vote on the matter at the United Nations later during the month. (Reuters)

Speaking at Yale University, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said: “As you know, the issue of Palestinian status at the United Nations is once again in the news. The Charter of the United Nations is clear. Such matters are solely in the hands of Member States. I share the frustration that the two-State solution may seem ever more distant. As all involved now consider the options, we know actions have consequences. None of us would want to see harm to the prospects for peace. None of us should act in any way that would place a return to talks at risk. There can be no substitute for meaningful negotiations.” (UN press release SG/SM/14629)

Christian communities in the Holy Land urged Europe and the international community to support the upcoming Palestinian bid at the United Nations, in a statement signed by 100 individuals and organizations, including the former Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, Michel Sabbah. (Middle East Online)

Israeli forces re-arrested a female prisoner, Muna Qadan, 40, in Jenin, the Ahrar Centre for the Study of Prisoners and Human Rights said. Ms. Qadan was released in the prisoner swap the previous year and spent three years in prison for her affiliation with Islamic Jihad. (Ma'an News Agency)

Israeli soldiers demolished a home in Jerusalem, a car repair shop near Bethlehem and a water pool near Hebron. (IMEMC)

An Israeli military court sentenced Asma Batran to 10 months in jail and fined her $500, a prisoners’ group said, for organizing political activities at a university. Ms. Batran, said to be affiliated with Hamas, had previously spent 20 months in Israeli jails before being released in 2009. (Ma’an News Agency)

14

The military chief of Hamas, Ahmed al-Jabari, along with another Palestinian, was killed by an Israeli air strike, Hamas and Israel said. Hamas said “resistance’s possibilities” were now open and would include suicide bombings and high profile attacks inside Israeli cities. Shortly after, two rockets exploded in an open area near Ashkelon, 20 Grad rockets were fired towards Beersheba and Ofakim in Israel. The rockets that landed in Beersheba caused damage to a vehicle and stores, but no injuries were reported. (Ma’an News Agency, Ynetnews, Reuters, Ynetnews)

The IDF said that Mr. Jabari's assassination marked the beginning of “Operation Pillar of Defence”. Israeli aircraft struck at least 20 rocket-launching pads belonging to Hamas and Islamic Jihad. Dozens of long-range rockets were destroyed. Palestinian medical sources said that 9 people had died in the Israeli air strikes, including a young girl, and 35 others had been wounded. According to reports in Gaza, Israel had also tried to kill Ra'ad al-Atar, another senior Hamas commander, who apparently had survived. The Palestinians reported that Israel had attacked another top militant, but his name had not been released and there had been no confirmation whether he had been killed in the strike. Meanwhile, the IDF had decided to deploy additional infantry units ahead of a possible ground offensive in Gaza. (CNN, Ynetnews)

Following the assassination of Hamas commander Jabari, Egypt recalled its Ambassador to Israel, Yasser Ridha. Meanwhile, President Obama spoke with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and Egyptian President Morsy about the rocket attacks being launched from Gaza into Israel and the escalating violence in the Gaza Strip. (AP, Haaretz, Reuters, Ynetnews)

The Secretary-General of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, strongly condemned the aggression of the Israeli forces against the Gaza Strip, which had left a number of Palestinian dead and wounded. (Qatar News Agency)

The PA urged the Security Council to take a stand on Israel's latest offensive in the Gaza Strip, which it said amounted to "illegal criminal actions". Israel's Permanent Representative to the UN, Ron Prosor, responded by calling on the international community to condemn "indiscriminate rocket fire against Israeli citizens – children, women." (Reuters)

The Security Council held an emergency meeting to discuss the Israeli strikes against the Gaza Strip but took no action. Meanwhile, the US State Department issued a statement strongly condemning the barrage of rocket fire from Gaza into southern Israel, and expressing regret for the death and injury of innocent Israeli and Palestinian civilians caused by the ensuing violence. (Reuters, US State Department)

According to Egyptian Government sources, PA President Abbas called for an urgent meeting of the League of Arab States on Israel's strikes on Gaza. (MENA)

Israeli President Shimon Peres visited the city of Sderot following recent rocket attacks. He said that Hamas was responsible for firing rockets at Israel and called for a stop to the transfer of funds to Gaza. (Ynetnews)

The Geneva Initiative called a reported Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs position paper considering the ouster of PA President Abbas if he proceeded with the UN bid "idiotic and anti-Israeli". (The Jerusalem Post)

Israeli Foreign Minister Liberman was considering a draft document that would offer the Palestinians immediate recognition of statehood within provisional borders as an incentive for dropping their UN bid, a senior official in the Ministry said. (Haaretz)

Palestinian Monetary Authority Governor Jihad Al Wazir said that he had readied the financial system to withstand the repercussions that might follow the planned bid at the UN. (Business Week)

During a meeting of the Arab League Follow-up Committee in Cairo, Arab States promised the PA a one-time transfer of $100 million if Israel imposed economic sanctions. PLO Executive Committee member Saeb Erakat told the Al-Quds newspaper that Palestinians were confident that their Arab brothers would stand behind their pledge. (IBA World Service)

The World Bank and the Government of Kuwait signed a $50 million grant agreement to support the ongoing Palestinian Reform and Development Programme. (KUNA)

Talking points for Israeli diplomats obtained by AP say that the General Assembly’s approval of the Palestinian request would violate the 1990s agreements between the two sides and "give Israel the right to reconsider and nullify" them in whole or in part. "Adoption of the resolution by the General Assembly will have grave consequences and set in motion unilateral Israeli responses," the Ministry for Foreign Affairs said, cautioning that it would also complicate future diplomatic progress. (AP)

Palestinian prisoners’ rights organization Addameer released a report expressing concern about the deteriorating health of four Palestinian prisoners presently held in Israeli prisons, three of whom were still on hunger strike. (www.addameer.org)

Thousands of Palestinians and foreign activists rallied across the West Bank and blocked roads used by settlers as part of the National Youth Week, ahead of Independence Day. Israeli forces fired tear gas during clashes with the protesters, according to witnesses, causing many cases of suffocation. Several people were hurt, including Ramallah Governor Laila Ghannam and the Chairman of the Supreme Court for Sharia Law, Sheikh Yousef Idais. Two Israelis were slightly injured by stones hurled at their cars north of the settlement of “Efrata.” (WAFA, Ynetnews)

Hundreds of settlers protected by the military visited Joseph's Tomb in Nablus during the night, local sources told Ma'an. (Ma’an News Agency)

Emer Costello, Chair of the European Parliament's Delegation for Relations with Palestine, expressed her grave concerns about the relocation of Bedouin communities in the Negev Desert and the situation of those living in the West Bank, following a visit by a parliamentary group to the region. (WAFA)

15

Israeli police were searching Jerusalem for the remains of rockets that Hamas said its armed wing, the Izz ad-Din Al-Qassam Brigades, had fired. Israeli police spokesman Rosenfeld said that the rocket had landed in open area near “Gush Etzion”, a block of settlements in the West Bank, south-east of the city. There were no reports of injury or damage. (Haaretz, Ma’an News Agency)

The IDF said that two Iranian-made Fajr rockets were fired toward Tel Aviv. The IDF said that it had struck most of the launching sites of the rockets in Gaza, and was now preparing for the possibility of expanding the operation, including the use of ground forces in the Gaza Strip. (Haaretz)

Israeli air strikes killed two Hamas militants in the northern Gaza Strip, bringing the Palestinian death toll to 13 in less than 24 hours. (Ma’an News Agency, WAFA)

Palestinian militants fired nearly 150 rockets into Israel, killing three people and striking the southern outskirts of Tel Aviv. (AP)

Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu stressed that the country's military was prepared to extend its operation against Hamas in the Gaza Strip. (BBC)

In a televised address, Egyptian President Morsy condemned the Israeli air strikes on the Gaza Strip and said that he had asked Egypt's Prime Minister Qandil to visit Gaza, adding, “We are in contact with the people of Gaza, and with the Palestinians, and we stand by them until we stop the aggression.” He said that the Israelis must realize that this aggression would lead to instability in the region. Mr. Morsy also said that he had spoken by telephone with US President Obama and discussed “ways to reach calm and end the aggression''. He also said that UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon had promised to relay Mr. Morsy’s demand for an end to the violence to the Israelis. (Reuters)

Palestinians across the West Bank demonstrated in solidarity with the people of Gaza. The participants flew banners and held up signs condemning Israeli attacks on Gaza. (WAFA)

PA President Abbas cut short a trip to Europe to deal with the crisis surrounding Israel's military operation in the Gaza Strip. (AP)

Russian Federation Foreign Minister Lavrov said that Moscow was “extremely concerned” about the outbreak of violence in the region and inside of the Palestinian territory. "What has happened on the Palestinian territories arouses serious concern. It is necessary to immediately stop shootings and attacks." (RT)

Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu spoke with French President Francois Hollande about ways to restore quiet to Israel and Gaza, a spokesperson for the French Embassy in Tel Aviv said. According to the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem, Mr. Netanyahu had also spoken with Russian Federation President Putin and planned to speak with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper soon. (Times of Israel)

Noting that Hamas bore principal responsibility for the current crisis, UK Foreign Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Hague expressed grave concern “by the situation in Gaza and southern Israel and deep regret for the loss of civilian life on both sides”. He called upon “all those involved to avoid any action which risk[ed] civilian casualties or escalat[ing] the crisis". (UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office)

PLO Executive Committee member Ashrawi denounced Israel’s latest military escalation against Gaza and its policies of targeted assassinations and air strikes, which had resulted in the killing and injury of Palestinian civilians. (WAFA)

According to sources within the PA Ministry of Health, the PA was trying to get medicine into hospitals in the Gaza Strip. President Abbas had instructed the Ministry of Health to transfer 20 trucks of medical supplies to Gaza. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Permanent Observer of Palestine to the UN, Riyad Mansour, wrote to the President of the Security Council for the month of November, Hardeep Singh Puri of India, saying, “We thus reiterate our urgent appeal to the Security Council ... to uphold its Charter duties and to act now to protect the Palestinian civilian population under Israel's occupation in accordance with international humanitarian law''. (Reuters)

Marwan Abu El Qumsan, a teacher employed by UNRWA, was killed by an Israeli air strike in northern Gaza. UNRWA schools had been closed owing to the security situation. (UNRWA)

Dozens of Egyptian youths protested in front of the headquarters of the League of Arab States in Cairo and burned Israeli flags. Protesters in the port city of Alexandria also burned Israeli flags. (Reuters)

16

According to Gaza health officials, 23 Palestinians had been killed, including 11 civilians, and 250 people had been wounded over the past days. (Haaretz)

Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu said, “The Israel Defense Forces will continue to hit Hamas hard and are prepared to broaden the action inside Gaza.'' (Reuters)

Prime Minister Netanyahu met with President Peres and had spoken to world leaders, including US President Obama, who agreed that the operation in Gaza was a justified one. “Israel will continue to do everything in its power to avoid civilian casualties," the Prime Minister said, while President Peres said, “Those who preach to us about morality should offer an alternative way to stop the rocket fire from Hamas. No country would agree for its children to live in that intolerable situation.” (The Jerusalem Post)

Egypt’s attempt to reach a three-hour truce in Gaza for the duration of Prime Minister Qandil’s visit to the Gaza Strip were dashed when rockets fired from Gaza hit several sites in southern Israel. According to a Hamas source, the IAF launched an attack on the house of the Hamas commander for southern Gaza which resulted in the death of two civilians, one a child. But Israel's military had strongly denied carrying out any attacks during the visit, accusing Hamas of violating the three-hour deal. (Reuters)

Israeli military sources indicated that Hamas was in an advanced development stage of drone production and was preparing to conduct flight tests. Sources also said that the IDF had attacked Gaza workshops to hinder production. (Haaretz)

Israeli military spokeswoman Lt. Col. Avital Leibovich said that the military had called 16,000 reservists, with the authority to draft an additional 14,000 soldiers. She said that no decision had been made on whether to send ground troops or how long the Israeli offensive would last, but all options were open, "including a ground operation". Along the Israeli-Gaza borders, tanks, armoured vehicles and military bulldozers were massed, while buses filled with soldiers had moved into the area. (Haaretz)

PA President Abbas said that Israel had launched the current Gaza assault to undermine Palestinian efforts to achieve non-member observer State status at the UN. “Undoubtedly, we consider that this aggression is against us, the Palestinian people,'' he said. He added, “We are going to the United Nations to vote on the resolution of our becoming an observer State on the 29th of this month. Nothing will deter us.” (Reuters)

Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan accused Israeli officials of having ordered the air strikes on the Gaza Strip as an electoral move ahead of January's general election, according to the Anatolia News Agency. Mr. Erdoğan said that he would discuss the attacks with US President Obama and that he had requested meetings with Russian President Putin and Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, hoping to put an end to Israel's “aggressive attitude” either through a Security Council decision or by a stance adopted by the world's major Powers. (AFP)

Egyptian Prime Minister Qandil entered Gaza accompanied by Egypt’s Secret Service Chief and other officials. Palestinian officials close to Egyptian mediators said that Mr. Qandil’s visit was to show solidarity with the Palestinian people. During the visit, Mr. Qandil said, “Egypt will spare no effort ... to stop the aggression and to achieve a truce.” He visited a Gaza hospital and met with Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh. (Reuters)

Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs Bob Carr called on Israel to show restraint in its retaliation against Gaza-based militants. Australian Defence Minister Peter MacKay urged all players in the Middle East conflict to show restraint and end the violence. (The Australian, The Globe and Mail)

The Tunisian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Rafik Abdessalem, visited the Gaza Strip to show solidarity with its people. (WAFA)

Turkish Prime Minister Erdoğan said that Turkey would be willing to pressure Hamas to halt rocket attacks on Israel on the condition that the US provided guarantees. He did not elaborate what kind of guarantees Turkey would like to see. (Hürriet Daily News)

In a speech at Cairo University, Prime Minister Erdoğan warned that Israel would be held accountable for “the massacre of these innocent children killed inhumanely in Gaza". (Hürriet Daily News)

In a statement issued by Arab Ministers for Foreign Affairs who met in Cairo, they expressed their backing for Egyptian efforts to secure a truce between Israel and Hamas. The Ministers also agreed to send a delegation to Gaza within "one or two days" in a show of support. (Reuters)

According to a Kremlin press release, Russian Federation President Putin told Egyptian President Morsy in a telephone call that the Russian Federation supported Egypt's efforts to halt the escalating violence in Gaza. He called upon the sides involved in the conflict to exercise restraint and stop military actions resulting in civilian deaths. (AFP)

US Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes said in a conference call with reporters: “We've ... urged those that have a degree of influence with Hamas, such as Egypt and Turkey and some of our European partners, to use that influence to urge Hamas to de-escalate''. US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said in an interview with Voice of America, “I understand the reasons Israel is doing what they're doing. They've been the target of missiles coming in from Gaza.'' (Reuters)

Egypt’s State news agency MENA said that President Morsy made a speech after Friday prayers denouncing Israel's attacks on the Gaza Strip as a “blatant aggression against humanity", adding that "Cairo will not leave Gaza on its own ... Egypt today is not the Egypt of yesterday, and Arabs today are not the Arabs of yesterday.” He said that the blood Israel shed would be a "curse upon it", adding that "Egyptians love peace ... but they have always been able to fend off aggressors and protect the land, the nation and the Muslim world." (AP, Ma'an News Agency)

Hamas Political Bureau Chief Mashaal, who was on a visit to the Sudan for an Islamic conference, told worshippers at Friday prayers that his group would retaliate for Israel’s arms factory attack the previous month. (Reuters)

Hundreds of Hamas supporters marched on Ramallah's main square, waving green Hamas flags, while some carried posters of Hamas leader Ahmad Jabari who was killed on 14 November. Local radio stations switched from pop to nationalistic songs. (Reuters)

Palestinian officials announced that workers had begun opening the concrete-encased grave of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat in Ramallah using jackhammers. (The Washington Post)

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon “urgently appeals to all concerned to do everything under their command to stop this dangerous escalation and restore calm,” his Spokesperson told a news briefing. “Rocket attacks are unacceptable and must stop at once. Israel must exercise maximum restraint,” he added. The Spokesperson noted that the Secretary-General had continued to speak with international and regional leaders and officials by telephone and in person and he planned to visit the region shortly. (UN News Centre)

The Spokesman for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said in a press briefing at the United Nations Office at Geneva that Navi Pillay denounced Israel's aerial attacks on the Gaza Strip as well as rockets fired by Hamas militants into southern Israel and called on both sides to step back from the brink. (Reuters)

The Bureau of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People issued a statement condemning, in the strongest possible terms, the deadly military attacks perpetrated by Israel in the Gaza Strip. The Bureau also strongly condemned the killing of Israeli civilians and the wounding of others as a result of rocket fire into Israel. It demanded that Israel end, immediately and unconditionally, its military campaign in the Gaza Strip. It considered extrajudicial killings inadmissible under international law, saying that Israel should be held accountable for the killing and wounding of the innocent civilians in Gaza, calling on the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to take urgent action to uphold their obligations. It also considered that it was incumbent upon the Security Council to exercise its responsibilities and engage itself fully with a view to defusing the crisis and saving civilian lives. (UN press release GA/PAL/1247)

17

According to emergency services in Gaza, at least eight Palestinians had been killed in new Israeli raids on the Gaza Strip. (Albawaba News)

Israel broadened its assault on the Gaza Strip from mostly military targets to centres of Government infrastructure, obliterating the four-storey headquarters of Hamas leader Haniyeh with a barrage of five bombs. (The New York Times)

According to a Royal Court statement, King Abdullah II of Jordan had instructed the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to take immediate measures to enhance the capabilities of Jordan’s military field hospital in Gaza. (Petra)

Morocco had sent more than 90 tons of humanitarian aid in the form of foodstuffs, pharmaceutical and medical products and blankets) to the Palestinian Red Crescent. Planes carrying tons of additional aid destined for Gaza arrived at the Egyptian airport of El Arish. (Haba24)

The World Health Organization expressed its deep concern about the escalating situation in the Gaza Strip and Israel and its impact on the health and lives of civilian populations in the area. (WHO)

18

According to medical officials, an Israeli missile killed at least 11 Palestinian civilians in Gaza including four children. (Reuters, The New York Times)

The Israeli military struck two buildings used by journalists in Gaza. Hours later, [projectiles] landed in southern Israeli cities and the country’s missile defence system intercepted a powerful long-range rocket over Tel Aviv. (The Washington Post)

Dozens of Palestinians suffered minor injuries near the Ofer military camp in Beitunia, west of Ramallah, during confrontations between Israeli soldiers and Palestinians, who demonstrated against the ongoing Israeli attacks on Gaza. (WAFA)

According to eyewitnesses, Israeli gunboats shelled the coastline of Gaza City and central Gaza. (Ma’an News Agency)

According to eyewitness accounts, Israeli jets bombed several sites in southern Gaza. (Ma’an News Agency)

India called upon the Israeli Government and Hamas to exercise maximum restraint and avoid taking any action that could further exacerbate the situation. India stressed that it was necessary that direct talks begin between the two sides without any further delay. (The Times of India)

A spokesman for the Czech Prime Minister Petr Nečas announced that the Prime Minister and Israeli Prime Netanyahu had spoken on the telephone over the weekend. Mr. Nečas stressed that Israel had the right to defend itself. (Ceskenoviny.cz)

UK Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Hague expressed grave concern on the situation in the Middle East, noting that the UK supported the efforts by the Egyptians to broker peace between Israel and Hamas. He warned that Israel would lose Israel international sympathy and support if it carried out a ground invasion of the Gaza Strip. (AFP, Foreign and Commonwealth Office)

French Minister for Foreign Affairs Laurent Fabius said that a ceasefire between Israel and Gaza militants was an urgent necessity. "War is not an option, it is never an option," he told journalists in Tel Aviv. "France would like to be a facilitator in a ceasefire," he said, adding that Paris had no direct contacts with Hamas. (AFP)

Jailed Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti called upon PA President Abbas and PLO leaders to visit Gaza to demonstrate "steadfastness and resistance". Mr. Barghouti condemned the "brutal Israeli aggression" against the Gaza Strip, describing it as an assault on all Palestinians, Arabs, Muslims, and free people of the world. (Ma’an News Agency)

During a news conference in Thailand, US President Obama said that it would be "preferable" to avoid an Israeli ground invasion of Gaza. However, Mr. Obama put the onus on Egypt and Turkey to get Hamas to halt cross-border rocket fire, saying that Israel had the right to defend itself. Mr. Obama implicitly appealed to Prime Minister Netanyahu to allow more time for Middle East leaders to rein in Hamas. (Reuters)

PA President Abbas called on Palestinians to stage "peaceful" demonstrations against Israel's military offensive against Gaza. (Ynetnews)

In a statement, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon strongly urged Israel and Palestinians to cooperate with all efforts led by Egypt to reach an immediate ceasefire. He arrived in Cairo and was expected to arrive in Jerusalem the following day to support efforts in that regard. (The Jerusalem Post, UN News Centre)

Eighty truckloads of medical equipment and food passed into Gaza through the Kerem Shalom crossing throughout the day. Israeli Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) Major-General Eitan Dangot worked with senior PA officials and international community members to enable the opening of the crossings, COGAT reported. Both the Kerem Shalom and Erez crossings were open to enable goods to pass through to Gaza, as well as allow foreign diplomats and patients with medical conditions to enter Israel, according to COGAT. (The Jerusalem Post)

19

Two children were killed in an air strike in southern Gaza. A father and his two sons died in another air strike north of Gaza City. (DPA)

A 22-year-old Palestinian man was shot dead by Israeli soldiers in Hebron during protests in support of Gaza. Four more Palestinians were critically wounded. A 28-year-old Palestinian protester shot in Saturday protest died in the hospital. (Ma’an News Agency, Ynetnews)

Ministers in Prime Minister Netanyahu's inner Cabinet held lengthy talks over whether to agree to a ceasefire or embark on a ground operation, but the decision had been put off by at least a day after it had been decided to give Egypt more time to try to broker the ceasefire with Hamas, a senior Israeli official said. (Haaretz, Israel Radio)

According to PA officials, clashes broke out between Palestinian students and Israeli soldiers in the village of Tuqu, east of Bethlehem, critically injuring a student and causing minor injuries to others. (WAFA)

Palestinian sources in Gaza reported that Israeli Air Force planes had struck a naval police post in the northern Gaza Strip. (Ynetnews)

The number of Palestinians killed in Gaza during Israel's ongoing offensive had reached 100, health authorities in Gaza said. The dead included 24 children and 10 women. Figures for the number of men killed made no distinction between civilians and militants. Some 850 people had been wounded, including 260 children and 140 women. Israel placed its death toll at three civilians – two men and a woman – killed by a rocket from Gaza. Police said that more than 60 people had been wounded. (Reuters)

A 22-year-old Palestinian was shot dead by Israeli troops on a road in Hebron, Palestinian medics and police said. The circumstances of the man’s death were not immediately clear. (AFP)

The Israeli military said that it could not yet provide an explanation about an air strike on Gaza that had killed 11 Palestinian civilians, including 9 members of a single family. A military spokeswoman said that the circumstances were still under investigation. (Reuters)

The religious authorities in Gaza said that Israel had damaged over 25 mosques in six days of heavy shelling across the enclave. (Ma’an News Agency)

In a press release issued by PLO's Negotiations Affairs Department, Chief Palestinian Negotiator Erakat condemned, "in the strongest terms, the latest Israeli attacks against media outlets and journalists in the Gaza Strip by Israeli occupation forces". (Palestine News Network)

An Israeli negotiating team arrived in Cairo for talks. Egypt's General Intelligence apparatus was mediating the talks between the Israeli team and a Hamas delegation, both of which were staying at different locations in the Egyptian capital. (Ahramonline)

During a meeting with Quartet Representative Blair in Ramallah, PA President Abbas called for a stop in the ongoing Israeli war on Gaza and for a mutual comprehensive calm. (WAFA)

King Abdullah II of Jordan held a telephone conversation with Crown Prince Salman Bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia on the Israeli offensive on Gaza and the regional and international efforts to end it. (The Jordan Times)

Representatives from Hamas, Fatah and Islamic Jihad held a meeting to discuss efforts to end Israel's war on the enclave. Fatah senior official Nabil Sha’ath, representing PA President Abbas at the meeting, said that President Abbas had sent him to Gaza to consolidate unity and end the years-long division between Fatah and Hamas. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Government of Brazil condemned the "disproportionate use of force" in Gaza and called upon Israel and Palestinians to end the fighting immediately. (BrazilMag)

China urged Israel and the Palestinians to halt clashes that had killed scores of civilians, saying that the violence would only add to the tensions in the Middle East. (Reuters)

The Israeli Cabinet met to discuss an Egyptian proposal for ending six days of Gaza violence, Public Radio reported. The report did not identify the points of Egypt's plan. (AFP)

The Council of the European Union, at its 3199th Foreign Affairs meeting, adopted conclusions on Gaza which said: “All attacks must end immediately as they cause unjustifiable suffering of innocent civilians. [Council] therefore calls for an urgent de-escalation and cessation of hostilities. It supports the efforts of Egypt and other actors to mediate for a rapid ceasefire and welcomes the mission of the United Nations Secretary-General to the region.” (www.consilium.europa.eu)

Quartet Representative Blair told Israeli President Peres in a meeting at the President's residence that the Quartet was working with the US, the UN and Egypt to bring an end to the ongoing conflict in Gaza. (The Jerusalem Post)

An Egyptian official had expressed frustration with the role played so far by the US, which had made no attempt to publicly urge Israel to halt its air strikes. “The US has the most sway with Israel of any ‘country on earth’”, he said, speaking on the condition of anonymity. "The Israelis would not listen easily to any other voice.” (The Washington Post)

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah pledged to support Gaza in the face of Israel's air war. "Iran, Syria and Hezbollah will not give up on the people of Gaza and its resistance, and this is our religious and moral and humanitarian obligation," he said. (AFP)

Germany’s Minister for Foreign Minister, Guido Westerwelle, arrived in Israel and met with Prime Minister Netanyahu and Foreign Minister Liberman, before heading to Ramallah to meet with President Abbas. (The Jerusalem Post)

According to eyewitness accounts, a group of Palestinians, international activists and members of the Popular Committees against the Wall and Settlements demolished part of the separation Wall in Rafat village, west of Ramallah. (Palestine News Network)

According to a PA official, settlers burned a Palestinian-owned car and sprayed racist graffiti on the entrance of the town of Sinjil, north of Ramallah. (WAFA)

Residents of the Palestinian village of Orif near Nablus claimed that a group of settlers from a nearby settlement had come to their local mosque before dawn, poured gasoline on an old carpet near the mosque's door and set it ablaze. (The Jerusalem Post)

According to recent polls, overwhelming majorities in the UK and other western European countries believed that Palestinians should have their own State and wanted their respective Governments to vote for recognition of Palestine at the UN at the end of November. (The Guardian)

Gaza's hospitals were reporting a shortage of medical supplies as the territory struggled to cope with Israel's continued bombardment. (International Business Times)

According to the official Qatari news agency, the Emir of Qatar announced the donation of $10 million towards the treatment of Palestinians wounded by Israeli forces during the recent conflict. (Middle East Monitor)

According to a Palestinian official, Israel closed the Kerem Shalom crossing with Gaza owing to ongoing violence in the area. (Ma’an News Agency)

The Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the UN, Vitaly Churkin, said that Morocco had circulated a proposed press statement since [15 November] but foot-dragging by one Security Council member meant that it "is still bogged down”. He said that the Russian Federation might introduce a resolution calling for a ceasefire and for the Palestinians and Israelis to resume peace talks. (AP)

The Security Council held closed-door negotiations on a possible statement proposed by the Arab bloc. Russian Federation Permanent Representative to the UN Churkin said that if the Council could not agree on a statement, he would put a resolution to a vote on 20 November to call for an end to the violence. Britain, France, Germany and the US had problems with the text because it made no mention of rocket fire by Palestinian militants, diplomats said. The diplomats, who had not wanted to be identified, said that the US diplomats had been instructed by Washington not to engage in consultations on a statement and that Britain, France and Germany had submitted earlier amendments to the draft Security Council statement. (AFP, Reuters, The Telegraph)

The Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People held its 346th meeting, where it heard briefings by Palestine’s Permanent Observer to the UN, Riyad Mansour, and by Richard Wright, Director of UNRWA’s New York Representative Office. The Committee approved four draft resolutions on the "Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People”, the “Division for Palestinian Rights”, the “Department of Public Information special information programme”, and the “peaceful settlement of the question of Palestine”, and accredited for civil society organizations. (Division for Palestinian Rights)

20

Israel’s ongoing war on the Gaza Strip resulted in the killing of 12 Palestinians, raising the death toll to 127. Medical sources reported that six Palestinians were killed in a hit that targeted two vehicles in the Sabra neighbourhood, south of the Gaza Strip. Six Palestinians were killed in separate air strikes that targeted family houses in Shijaia and Zeitoun, and random locations in the city of Beit Hanoun, injuring more than 20 people, some of them in critical condition. (WAFA)

Israeli air strikes killed three Palestinian journalists in a car with press markings, a Gaza health official and the head of the Hamas-run Al Aqsa TV said. Israel acknowledged targeting the men, claiming that they had ties to militants. Later, an Israeli air strike hit a building that housed the AFP office. No one was injured and the agency’s office was not damaged. Another Israeli missile killed an employee for Al Quds Educational Radio, a private station, said Ashraf al-Kidra, a Gaza health official. (AP)

An IDF soldier was killed in a rocket and mortar salvo that was fired on the Eshkol Regional Council. In a separate incident, an Israeli civilian was killed in the same region by a projectile fired from Gaza. Another civilian was seriously injured and 15 soldiers were lightly hurt in the attack. (Ynet news)

Israel struck more than 100 targets in Gaza, including the headquarters of the Islamic National Bank in Gaza City. (AP, DPA)

Following their meeting in Jerusalem, Prime Minister Netanyahu said in a public statement alongside visiting US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that "If there is a possibility of achieving a long-term solution to this problem with diplomatic means, we prefer that but if not, I'm sure you understand that Israel will have to take whatever action is necessary to defend its people." (Ma’an News Agency)

The President of Argentina, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, wrote to the President of the Security Council to request urgent action on the Gaza violence, Argentina's Consulate to Palestine said. She said that while Argentina would not take its seat on the Council until January 2013, "the current situation can not wait.” "As you know, Gaza has a population density that prevents avoiding civilian casualties even when air strikes have specific targets … It is difficult not to [feel] outrage at the number of children that are among the hundreds of casualties and thousands of injured," President Kirchner said. (Ma’an News Agency)

League of Arab States Secretary-General Elaraby, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Turkey Ahmet Davutoğlu, and a number of Arab Ministers for Foreign Affairs were expected to visit Gaza. It had not been made clear if Hamas would allow PA Minister Malki into Gaza. (Al-Jazeera, The Jerusalem Post)

Following his meeting with League of Arab States Secretary-General Elaraby in Cairo, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said: “My message is clear: all sides must halt fire immediately. Further escalating the situation will put the entire region at risk. I appreciate the League of Arab States, led by Dr. Elaraby, for rapidly mobilizing diplomatic support for efforts led by Egypt to seek a ceasefire. I support these efforts. There is no time to waste to end the violence.” [...] “We all must recognize that Israel has legitimate security concerns that must be respected in accordance with international law. But a ground operation would be a dangerous escalation.” (UN News Centre)

UNRWA Commissioner-General Grandi visited Gaza to see first-hand the immense destruction that had taken place and to recognize the work by UNRWA staff despite the violence. Mr. Grandi met with refugees and also spoke to staff at the Jabalia distribution centre which had been badly damaged in the air strikes but had been repaired by staff to enable food distributions to thousands of refugees. Mr. Grandi emphasized that the immediate issue was to achieve a ceasefire, but he also stressed that the underlying issues should not be forgotten. For years, Gazans had been living under a blockade that restricted their movement and exports, and had decimated the economy. “The blockade is affecting their daily lives and must be solved,” he said. (www.unrwa.org)

21

An explosion hit a bus in central Tel Aviv, wounding at least 21 people. Ofir Gendelman, a spokesman for Prime Minister Netanyahu, said that the explosion was a terrorist attack and that most of the injured had suffered only mild injuries. (Haaretz)

The Palestinian group Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade had claimed responsibility for the bus bombing in Tel Aviv, according to unconfirmed Palestinian media reports. Hamas Spokesman Abu Zuhri praised the bombing but stopped short of claiming responsibility. (The Jerusalem Post)

The United States denounced the bus bombing in Tel Aviv. "These attacks against innocent Israeli civilians are outrageous. The United States will stand with our Israeli allies," said a White House statement, which also reaffirmed Washington's "unshakable commitment" to the security of Israel. Britain and France also issued condemnations, with the latter warning that such attacks could trigger an Israeli retaliation that could "degenerate into open conflict". (DPA)

Israeli intensified its bombing in the Gaza Strip, killing 22 Palestinians and injuring dozens of others. (IMEMC)

An Israeli soldier had died from a serious head injury in a rocket attack from Gaza the previous day. (Haaretz)

An Israeli warplane fired a missile towards the house of Essam al-Daalees, a top adviser to Gaza Prime Minister Haniyeh at the Nusseirat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip that flattened the property. Medics reported that one passerby had been wounded, adding that the house had been evacuated earlier. (Reuters)

Five Palestinians were wounded by rubber bullets fired by Israeli soldiers in Beit Ummar during a demonstration against Israeli attacks in Gaza. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces arrested 33 Palestinians, including children, from across the West Bank, according to local and security sources. Arrests took place in the village of Hussan, west of Bethlehem; in the al-Dheisheh Refugee Camp, south of Bethlehem; in Jenin area; and in the Hebron area. Arrests followed raids and search of several Palestinian houses. (WAFA)

Small clashes broke out between Palestinians and the Israeli army in multiple locations across the occupied West Bank in protests over the ongoing conflict in the Gaza Strip. Medics said that two Palestinians were shot in the legs by Israeli gunfire in a demonstration outside Ofer military prison near Ramallah. The three main cities in the West Bank – Ramallah, Hebron and Nablus – all saw dozens of Palestinian youths hurling stones at soldiers, with some using sling-shots. They were met with tear gas canisters, stun grenades, rubber bullets, foul smelling "skunk" spray and live ammunition. In Nablus, hundreds waved Palestinian and Islamist Hamas flags in a rally against the eight-day conflict. (Reuters)

The body of a Palestinian woman had been pulled out from a house shelled by Israeli air forces, which had killed 10 other family members, raising the death toll to 164, including 43 children. (WAFA)

An Israeli military spokesperson said that a suspect – “an Arab-Israeli from Taybe and a member of Hamas” – had been arrested in the Tel Aviv bus bombing. Officials said that a number of Palestinians affiliated with Hamas and Islamic Jihad in the West Bank had also been arrested, suspected of having recruited the suspect. (BBC)

US Secretary of State Clinton met with PA President Abbas for 45 minutes at his headquarters in Ramallah. Neither made any comment to journalists following the meeting. "President Abbas told Clinton that Egypt was the key to everything," said Palestinian Chief Negotiator Erakat. "President Abbas wished that before Clinton leaves Egypt, a ceasefire will be announced," Mr. Erakat said. "The Secretary of State assured President Abbas that the United States has done everything possible to reach a ceasefire", Mr. Erakat said. "Every hour that passes without a ceasefire is a human catastrophe in Gaza," added Mr. Erakat, who accused Israel of obstructing efforts to reach a truce, without elaborating. President Abbas and Secretary Clinton also addressed the issue of a Palestinian bid for enhanced United Nations status, and she "urged Abbas to postpone this effort", Mr. Erakat said. (AFP)

US Secretary of State Clinton went back to Jerusalem after holding talks in the West Bank with PA President Abbas to meet again with Prime Minister Netanyahu, Minister of Defense Barak and Foreign Minister Liberman in her attempts to help reach an agreement. Ms. Clinton was due to travel later to Cairo to meet with Egyptian officials who were mediating the crisis. (AP)

Minister of Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Hua Chunying said that China backed the mediation efforts by Egypt and other Arab States as well as the League of Arab States to ease the current situation in Gaza. "China is paying great attention to the situation in the Gaza Strip," Ms. Hua told reporters. Chinese Minister for Foreign Affairs Yang Jiechi talked with his Egyptian counterpart, Mr. Amr, over the phone about the situation. Ms. Hua said, "We urge parties concerned, Israel, in particular, to show maximum restraint, reach a ceasefire as soon as possible, and avoid taking any actions to escalate the situation." The spokeswoman said that China supported necessary actions taken by the international community, including the Security Council. (Xinhua)

In an oblique criticism of Israel’s offensive in Gaza, Indian Minister for External Affairs Salman Khurshid told reporters: “We did say categorically that the disproportionate use of force is unacceptable.” He added, “It is a very sad and tragic escalation of violence that cost the loss of some innocent lives, particularly women and children.” He also reaffirmed India’s commitment to an independent State of Palestine. (firstpost.com)

Pope Benedict told pilgrims and tourists at his weekly general audience in St. Peter's Square that he backed efforts to negotiate a ceasefire. "I appeal to the authorities on both sides to take courageous decisions in favour of peace and bring an end to a conflict with negative repercussions on the entire Middle East, which is already tormented by too many conflicts and so in need of peace and reconciliation," the Pontiff said. (The Jerusalem Post)

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called for an immediate halt to rocket attacks on Israel from the Gaza Strip after talks with Palestinian leader Abbas. "I reiterate my call for an immediate cessation of indiscriminate rocket attacks by Palestinian militants targeting Israeli populated centres. This is unacceptable," he told a news conference in the West Bank city of Ramallah. "Now is the time for diplomacy and stopping the violence," he said, a week into deadly Israeli air strikes on the Gaza Strip from which militants had been firing hundreds of rockets at the Jewish State. (AFP)

The following statement, attributable to the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General, was issued today:


Speaking after a meeting with Egyptian President Morsy, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said, "I am particularly concerned about the spiral of violence at the time of intense efforts to reach a ceasefire in Gaza and Israel"… We all know there are many details to work out. But while that happens, civilians continue to die." (Reuters)

Israel and Hamas had reached a ceasefire agreement as announced by Egyptian Foreign Minister Amr in a joint news conference with US Secretary of State Clinton. The deal was set to take effect at 9 p.m. local time in which Israel and Hamas had agreed to an immediate halt in the violence. Israel would end its policy of assassinating top Hamas officials, while Hamas promised to halt all rocket fire by the many militant groups operating in the Gaza Strip. (AP, Ma’an News Agency)

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the Security Council welcomed the ceasefire. “I commend the parties for stepping back from the brink,” Mr. Ban said as he briefed the Security Council via video-link from Tel Aviv. “Our focus now must be on ensuring that the ceasefire holds and that all those in need in Gaza – and there are many – receive the humanitarian assistance that they need.” The Security Council in turn issued its own press statement unanimously welcoming the agreement. It called upon the parties to both uphold the agreement and to “act seriously to implement its provisions in good faith”. (UN News Centre)

The Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, Irina Bokova, stated “I am deeply concerned about the reported targeting of media facilities and personnel that have left three Palestinian journalists dead: Mahmoud Al-Komi, Hossam Salameh Mohammed and Abu Eisha. The civilian status of journalists and their right to carry out their professional duties should be respected. I am equally alarmed by strikes on schools in both Gaza and southern Israel. Schools should offer a safe environment for children. Attacks against them are a denial of the right to education and should be firmly condemned. I wish to join my voice to the UN Secretary-General, whose paramount concern is for the safety and well-being of all civilians.” (www.unesco.org)

The Member States of the European Union were heading for an abstention on the subject of the Palestinian request to become a UN non-member observer State at the General Assembly, which would take place on 29 November, in the opinion of a European source. The Ministers for Foreign Affairs had discussed this request at the Council on 19 November without a decision being made. (Agence Europe)

Israeli settlers detained three Palestinians from a Nablus village before handing them over to Israeli soldiers, a local official said. (Ma’an News Agency)

The sole crossing for commercial goods into Gaza would stay closed owing to security reasons, a Palestinian official said. The Kerem Shalom crossing at the extreme south of the Israel-Gaza border, next to Egyptian territory, was the only freight passage into the blockaded territory. (Ma’an News Agency)

22

Israeli forces seized 55 suspected Palestinian militants in the West Bank, the Israeli army said. (Reuters)

While welcoming the ceasefire, the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child expressed its deep concern at the devastating and lasting impact the crisis in Gaza and Israel was having on children. (www.ohchr.org)

French Foreign Minister Fabius told members of the French Senate: “I would like to remind you of campaign pledge … of … President François Hollande, which said that there would be an international recognition of a Palestinian State.” A French Government source said that the comment was intended to indicate that France was leaning towards voting for the Palestinian request. (Reuters)

The European Parliament adopted a statement expressing support for the Palestinian bid for UN recognition as a non-member observer State. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli settlers in the southern Hebron Hills uprooted around 400 olive trees belonging to a Palestinian farmer. (Ma’an News Agency)

23

Two Palestinians died from wounds sustained in Israeli air strikes in Gaza. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli troops fired to push back crowds in Gaza surging towards Israel’s border fence, killing a 20-year-old Palestinian man and wounding 19. (AP)

Israeli forces detained 28 Palestinians in the West Bank, including at least five members of the Palestinian Legislative Council affiliated with Hamas. (Ma’an News Agency)

Following a meeting with Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi in Beijing, Palestinian envoy Bassam Al-Salhi said that China backed the Palestinians in the Gaza conflict and in their bid to upgrade their status at the UN, adding that China was giving them $1 million in aid. “We think that China should, can take more (of a) role in the area, to support ending the occupation and have the peace process more balanced because we think that the Israelis are using all the time the position of the United States, which is supporting the Israelis,” Mr. Al-Salhi said. (AP)

Russia Federation Foreign Minister Lavrov told reporters: “We have said at the Quartet’s meetings that this format is insufficient for effectively looking into today’s problems and working out viable proposals and agreements. … The Quartet needs … to work together with the League of Arab States representatives and work out solutions together … to restart Israeli-Palestinian talks.” (AFP)

US Secretary of State Clinton had reportedly warned Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu during her talks in Israel during the week not to take any extreme actions in response to the Palestinian move in the United Nations, saying that such steps against the PA could bring about its collapse. (Haaretz)

24

Israeli forces arrested Yasser Mansour, a Hamas-affiliated member of the Palestinian Legislative Council, in Nablus. (WAFA)

The office of Hamas leader Haniyeh said in a statement that Egypt had notified them that Israel had allowed Palestinian fishermen to fish in Gaza’s waters at a distance of 6 miles, up from 3 miles. (Reuters)

Israeli settlers hurled stones at a Palestinian school near Nablus, damaging the building. The school was empty at the time and no injuries were reported. (Ynetnews)

25

Three Palestinians were injured after Israeli soldiers stationed across the border opened fire at them east of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip. (IMEMC)

Israeli forces arrested 16 Palestinians in the West Bank during the night. (Ma’an News Agency)

The White House had reportedly told Israel that it would try to soften the wording of the PA proposal at the General Assembly. Prime Minister Netanyahu's representative at the talks, Yitzhak Molcho, had reportedly left for Washington, D.C., to meet with senior White House and State Department officials. (Haaretz)

UK Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Hague called for a “decisive lead” from the US in seeking a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. He argued that “some good” could come out of the Gaza crisis if it was possible to open access in and out of Gaza and halt weapons smuggling. He also called upon the US to show “necessary leadership” in the coming months because of its “crucial leverage with Israel”. “It is time for a huge effort on the Middle East peace process. … We’re coming to the final chance, maybe, for a two-State solution in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to be successfully resolved,” he said. (BBC)

Hamas Spokesman Nunu told reporters in Gaza City that direct damage caused by the Israeli aerial bombardment amounted to $545 million, while indirect damage added up to some $700 million. He said that the Israeli operation had completely destroyed 200 homes and damaged another 8,000. Another 42 non-residential buildings, including the government headquarters, were also completely destroyed, according to Mr. Nunu. Three mosques and a health centre had been levelled, and hundreds of official buildings had also been partially razed. (AFP)

UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator James W. Rawley said in his remarks in Gaza City: “In just eight days, at least 103 civilians were killed, including 33 children and 13 women; hundreds more were injured, many critically, as a result of the recent hostilities in Gaza. About 700 families have been made homeless by the destruction of their homes and have been displaced. Bridges, schools, clinics, media offices and sports facilities were damaged. … And it has further contributed to the “de-development” of Gaza. … I am especially concerned about the water sector, where the aquifer – the main source of drinking water – may well be on the verge of collapse. (www.ochaopt.org)

Israeli police said that Palestinian cars had been vandalized during the night in East Jerusalem, and one was daubed with the slogan in Hebrew reading “"Price tag Gaza”. (AFP)

Hamas Spokesman Nunu said at a press conference in Gaza City: “The Hamas Government has decided to pardon all … Fatah members [in cases] related to the internal division since 2006.” He said that Hamas had decided to set up a committee “to implement this decision and establish a new stage of reconciliation”. Later in the day, PLO official Sha’ath said that the PA would release Hamas-affiliated detainees as a goodwill gesture to boost reconciliation efforts. (AFP)

26

Two men were shot and injured by Israeli forces east of Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip. (Ma’an News Agency)

A Palestinian man in Gaza City died of wounds sustained in an Israeli strike that killed two of his relatives on the first day of Israel’s offensive on Gaza. (Ma’an News Agency)

A 20-year-old man died after being electrocuted in a tunnel under the Gaza-Egypt border. (Ma’an News Agency)

Medical sources in the Gaza Strip reported that four Palestinians had been injured after having been fired upon by Israeli soldiers near the eastern border of the Gaza Strip. (IMEMC)

Medical sources in the Gaza Strip reported that a Palestinian woman had died of wounds suffered during the Israeli strikes on Gaza. (IMEMC)

Palestinian sources reported that clashes took place between dozens of residents and Israeli soldiers after the army placed iron barriers blocking the eastern entrance of Ya’bod village, near the West Bank city of Jenin. (IMEMC)

Egyptian mediators have begun separate talks with Hamas and with Israel to flesh out details of a ceasefire agreement. An Egyptian said that the talks would deal with Palestinian demands for the opening of more Israeli crossings into Gaza. (Haaretz, Reuters)

Pope Benedict had made a new appeal for peace in the Middle East and freedom of worship for Christians, following repeated bouts of violence and intimidation that have caused deep concern to the Vatican. (The Jerusalem Post)

The PA submitted a draft resolution to the General Assembly which, if approved, would upgrade its status to non-member observer State. The draft resolution reportedly calls for a resumption of peace talks with Israel following the UN vote. According to The Wall Street Journal, the draft lacked any mention of a settlement moratorium as a precondition for future negotiations or of joining UN agencies and treaties. (The Jerusalem Post)

Britain was considering backing the Palestinian bid in an attempt to bolster PA President Abbas' stance, The Financial Times reported. London's support was conditioned upon continued peace talks with Israel and the PA refraining from bringing cases against Israeli officials to the International Criminal Court, the newspaper said. (Haaretz)

Hamas Spokesman Abu Zuhri said that the group backed any political gain PA President Abbas could achieve at the UN “without causing any harm to the national Palestinian rights”. Hamas leader Mashaal told Mr. Abbas by telephone of his support for the UN bid. (Reuters, WAFA)

Egyptian authorities transferred 200 tons of food aid to the Gaza Strip through the Rafah crossing, Egyptian security officials said. (Ma'an News Agency)

A Western diplomat said that the EU was recommending a blacklist of “known violent settlers” to be blocked from entering EU Member States. (Haaretz)

Settlers razed land east of the settlement of “Rotem” in the Jordan Valley, according to a local official. (WAFA)

At the inauguration ceremony of the King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz International Centre for Interreligious and Intercultural Dialogue in Vienna, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said: "More than ever, we need a negotiated two-State solution ending the occupation and the conflict," adding that “The underlying issues must be addressed. This is critical to regional stability. A just and comprehensive peace is our ultimate goal – and it is the only way to bring lasting security to all." (UN News Centre)

27

There was "no mistake" in an Israeli air strike that killed 12 Palestinians in Gaza, including 10 from the same family, the Israeli army said, adding that the raid had targeted a "terror operative". (www.news24.com)

Media outlets reported that Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs had instructed its embassies to reject any official letter that included what it referred to as “problematic terms”, such as the "State of Palestine”, "occupied Palestine” or "occupied Jerusalem". The embassies had been told to accept letters containing the phrase "Palestinian Authority territories". (Ynetnews)

International forensic experts exhumed the body of the late PA President Yasser Arafat as part of an investigation to determine whether he had been poisoned. (Ma’an News Agency, The Financial Times)

The media reported that the Palestinian leadership would petition the International Criminal Court if it found proof that the late Yasser Arafat had been poisoned. (www.ngrguardiannews.com)

Representatives of all Palestinian factions held a meeting in Gaza City during which they all agreed to organize on 29 November a joint rally raising Palestinian flags to show support for the Palestinian statehood bid. (Ma’an News Agency)

Permanent Observer of Palestine to the UN Mansour said that the Palestinians would not rush to join the International Criminal Court if they won a UN status upgrade, but warned that seeking action against Israel in the Court would remain an option. (Reuters)

According to the media reports, Israel will take a “low-profile” approach to the Palestinians’ expected bid to upgrade their status at the UN. Israel’s position was that the resolution seeking Observer State status was a clear violation of the underlying principle of the peace process, which required all outstanding issues to be resolved by negotiations. (The Jerusalem Post)

Prime Minister of Australia Julia Gillard told the Labour caucus that after strong lobbying by both Left and Right factions, Australia would not oppose the UN bid and abstain instead. (Brisbane Times)

Sweden announced that it would vote in favour of the Palestinian bid. (WAFA)

Foreign Minister of France Fabius announced in the Lower House of Parliament that France would vote in favour of Palestine becoming a non-member observer State at the UN. (AFP, The Wall Street Journal)

It had been reported that US Secretary of State Clinton and the State Department were being sued for allegedly allowing American aid money meant for the PA to be used by “terror groups” such as Hamas. The lawsuit was filed in Washington, D.C., on behalf of 24 US citizens living in Israel by the Israel Law Centre, a Tel Aviv-based legal group that specialized in fighting "terrorist organizations and the regimes that support them". The suit accused the defendants of having "authorized, sanctioned, encouraged, and/or facilitated funding to the Palestinian Authority without imposing the controls and oversight mandated by federal statute". (AFP)

The World Bank Group Board of Directors had approved a $6.4 million grant to improve and expand coverage of water and sewage services in Gaza. (www.worldbank.org)

Palestinians from the West Bank village of Sinjil said that settlers vandalized more than 20 cars. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli police have reportedly begun ordering Palestinian labourers with [Israeli] work permits off buses from the Tel Aviv area to the West Bank, following complaints from settlers that Palestinians pose a security risk. The Israeli Transportation Ministry said that it was considering adding bus lines that would be geared towards Palestinian labourers. (Haaretz)

Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails launched a one-day hunger strike in solidarity with two long-term hunger strikers who were at risk of death. (Ma’an News Agency)

In his briefing to the Security Council, UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Robert Serry elaborated on the situation in Gaza and the next steps to be taken to ensure a lasting ceasefire. In connection with the Palestinian request to raise its status in the General Assembly, he called upon Member States to protect the crucial achievements of the Palestinian Authority. (www.un.org)

28

According to Palestinian medics, Israeli forces shot and injured seven Palestinians near the border in the central Gaza Strip, east of Maghazi and Bureij refugee camps. The injured Palestinians were transferred to the al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital. (Ma’an News Agency)

The IDF detected a bomb placed on a road leading to a Palestinian village south-west of Nablus. The bomb was detonated in a controlled environment. (Ynetnews)

The Israeli navy opened fire at two Palestinian fishing boats six nautical miles off the Gaza coast. The fishermen were taken to Ashdod Port for further questioning. (Ma’an News Agency)

A Palestinian man died from injuries sustained in Israel's eight-day assault on the Gaza Strip, according to Egyptian medics. (Ma’an News Agency)

Egyptian security sources announced that they were planning an "extraordinary" crackdown on smuggling tunnels under the Gaza border. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli forces prevented villagers in Jenin from performing morning prayers, according to locals. (Ma’an News Agency)

PA President Abbas arrived in New York for the General Assembly session that would take up the Palestinian request for UN non-member observer State status. He met with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and discussed the request. (IMEMC)

Permanent Observer of Palestine to the UN Mansour told reporters at a press conference held at the UN Headquarters that “voting to grant non-member observer State status to Palestine would be an implicit recognition that the State of Palestine existed, and would open the way for negotiations, and give delegations the chance to join the side of history and humanity”. (UN DPI)

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu met with PA Abbas in New York. Mr. Davutoğlu stated that he would attend the General Assembly vote the following day, and hoped that Palestine would be upgraded as a non-member observer State. (Anadolu Agency)

Britain said that it would support the Palestinian bid for a diplomatic upgrade at the United Nations if it were assured that the Palestinians would return to peace talks and would not pursue Israel through the International Criminal Court. (Reuters)

Switzerland will vote in favour of the Palestinian request for non-member observer State status. According to the Federal Council, the change of status should contribute to a revitalization of the principle of a two-State solution in Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations. (www.eda.admin.ch)

Norway will back the Palestinian demand for non-member observer State status, said its Foreign Minister. (www.thesundaily.my)

Denmark, Spain and Austria said that they would vote for the upgrade of Palestine’s status at the UN, while Germany said that it would oppose it. (Reuters, Ynetnews)

Guyana and Suriname will support the Palestinian bid for upgraded status at the UN. (www.caribbeannewsnow.com)

France warned the Palestinians against taking Israel to the International Criminal Court should they win upgraded UN status, saying that it would damage peace efforts. (AFP)

US Secretary of State Clinton said that UN recognition of an independent Palestine won't help Palestinians or Israelis reach a lasting two-State peace agreement. Mrs. Clinton stressed that the "path to a two-State solution that fulfils the aspirations of the Palestinian people is through Jerusalem and Ramallah, not New York." (NewsChannel5.com)

The Russian Federation Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced that the Russia Federation would vote in support of Palestine’s UN status upgrade. The Ministry emphasized that the intention was not only based on its position with regard to Palestine but also on the fact that Palestinians did not consider the bid as an alternative to the peace process. (The Voice of Russia)

PLO Executive Committee member Ashrawi said that a bid for UN recognition of the State of Palestine was a last-ditch attempt to rescue the troubled Middle East peace efforts. She urged the US to drop its opposition to the bid, dismissing its stance as "pathetic" and harmful to American interests in the region. Ms. Ashrawi also said that the Palestinian leadership had not given in to heavy international pressure to commit that they would not sue Israeli officials at the International Criminal Court should they win recognition as a non-member observer State at the UN. (AP, AFP)

Hamas leader Mashaal revived a long-standing proposal for his militant party to join the Palestine Liberation Organization. Speaking at an academic conference from his new base in Doha, the Hamas leader called upon Palestinians to unite through new PLO elections that would rebuild the organization “on a correct basis that included all Palestinian forces”. (The New York Times)

The Minister of Health of Tunisia, Dr. Abdul-Latif Al-Makky, arrived in the Gaza Strip and was welcomed by several health officials. (IMEMC)

EU Representative to the West Bank and Gaza Strip John Gatt-Rutter visited Gaza and signed an 11.5 million agreement to support UNRWA’s activities in the areas of health, education and social services, commending the outstanding work by the agency during the recent eight-day conflict. (www.unrwa.org)

Deputy Director-General for Europe at the Israeli Foreign Ministry called the ambassadors of Denmark, Ireland and the EU to protest against the holding of a conference about the possibility of labelling goods made in the settlements, which was scheduled to take place in Brussels. (The Jerusalem Post)

Settlers pumped wastewater into Palestinian agricultural lands in Husan, Wadi Fukin and Nahalin villages in Bethlehem, causing severe damage to the crops. (Palestine News Network)

A group of Nobel Peace Prize laureates, prominent artists and activists issued a call for an international military boycott of Israel following its “Operation Pillar of Defence” in Gaza. (The Guardian, Ynetnews)

The Secretary-General of the Fédération internationale de football association (FIFA), Jerome Valcke, said that FIFA would help to rebuild the Palestine stadium in Gaza City after it was partially destroyed in the recent Israeli air strikes. (Ynetnews)

29

Israeli forces opened fire and injured a Palestinian man east of Jabalia in the Gaza Strip. An Israeli army spokesman said that troops fired "in accordance with the rules of engagement" after a group of Palestinians approached a border fence "acting violently" and tried to damage it. (Ma’an News Agency)

Israeli military vehicles crossed into the Gaza Strip near the al-Qarara town, north-east of Khan Younis, in a new breach of the Gaza ceasefire. (Ma’an News Agency)

A member of Hamas' military wing died from wounds he sustained during Israel's latest assault on Gaza. (Ma’an News Agency)

The media reported the indictment of two former Israeli border police officers who had been charged with aggravated battery and abuse of power for attacking a Palestinian man from Hebron at a checkpoint in 2010. (Ynetnews)

In a historic move, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution upgrading the status of Palestine to that of a non-member observer State, with 138 votes in favour (including 14 EU Member States), 9 against (including Israel, the US, Canada and the Czech Republic) and 41 abstentions. Five countries did not take part in the vote. (ww.un.org)

Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu said that the recognition of an independent State of Palestine by the General Assembly would not advance the Palestinians' quest for a homeland. He stressed that the Palestinians would not win a State until they recognized Israel as the Jewish homeland, declared an end to their conflict with the Jewish State and agreed to security arrangements that protected Israel. (AP)

Former Israeli Prime Minister Olmert broke ranks with official policy by saying that he saw “no reason to oppose” the Palestinian bid for UN recognition. Mr. Olmert said that the General Assembly decision would “lay […] the foundation for the idea” of a two-State solution. (Haaretz)

EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Ashton issued a statement reiterating that only a political solution to the conflict could bring lasting security, peace and prosperity to Palestinians and Israelis. “Looking ahead after today’s vote, it is important for all parties and actors involved to work towards a settlement of the conflict with renewed purpose and sense of urgency,” she said. (www.consilium.europa.eu)

According to an official, Israel would not cancel any agreement with the PLO over the Palestinian UN bid but rather uphold them "to the letter". "We could [withhold] some funds to pay off the debts accumulated by the Palestinian Authority," he said. "Arrears to the Israel Electric Company amounted to over $700 million shekels ($170 million)." "Israel could also reduce the amount of water it supplies, since we supply the Palestinians far more than what the agreements necessitate," the official said. (AFP)

The President of the [Israeli] military court system in the West Bank was pushing an initiative to apply Israel's penal code to Palestinian residents of the territory instead of the current mix of military orders and the Jordanian code. (Haaretz)

The Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People held a special meeting in observance of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People at UN Headquarters. The speakers included the Chair of the Committee, the President of the General Assembly, the UN Secretary-General, the President of the Security Council, the PA Foreign Minister, the Chair of the Special Committee to Investigate Israeli Practices Affecting the Human Rights of the Palestinian People and Other Arabs of the Occupied Territories, as well as representatives of intergovernmental and civil society organizations. In attendance were PA President Abbas, PA Prime Minister Fayyad, Turkish Foreign Minister Davutoğlu and other high-level officials. (Division for Palestinian Rights, UN News Centre)

A special meeting was held at the United Nations Office at Geneva to mark the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. (UNOG)

The Government of India contributed $1 million for UNRWA’s projects for the year 2012-2013. (WAFA)

Palestinians across the West Bank rallied in support of President Abbas' bid to upgrade Palestine's status at the UN. (Ma’an News Agency)

30

Hamas' military wing said that one of its fighters was killed when remnants of Israeli weaponry from the latest Gaza assault exploded in the northern Gaza Strip. (Ma’an News Agency)

In his address to the General Assembly before the historic vote, PA President Abbas said that the General Assembly was asked “to issue the birth certificate of Palestine", stressing that the vote was the last chance to save the two-State solution. (AP)

Israeli Ambassador to the UN Prosor, in his speech after the vote, expressed Israel’s opposition to the General Assembly resolution, called it "so one-sided it doesn't advance peace, it pushes it backward", and adding nothing would change on the ground as the resolution "will not confer statehood". (AFP)

In a statement following the vote, US Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice said, “Today's unfortunate and counterproductive resolution places further obstacles to peace. [..] No resolution can create a State where none exists". (The Wall Street Journal)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu dismissed the vote as an empty gesture that made little difference for Palestinians and made peace prospects more remote. "The decision at the UN today won't change a thing on the ground”, he said prior to the vote. "Peace will be reached through agreements reached between Jerusalem and Ramallah, and not through declarations passed at the UN.” (The Wall Street Journal)

Prior to the vote at the General Assembly, US State Department Spokeswoman Vitoria Nuland said, "Regardless of what happens in New York today, the United States is going to continue to try to bring these parties back to the table". (The Wall Street Journal)

In response to the General Assembly vote, US lawmakers introduced three separate initiatives proposing punitive measures against the Palestinian Authority and the Palestine Liberation Organization. (The Wall Street Journal)

Crowds of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza gathered to celebrate the upgrading of Palestine’s status at the UN. (AP)

PLO Executive Committee member and Head of the PLO Department of Culture and Information Ashrawi thanked, on behalf of the Palestinian leadership and people, the 138 countries that voted in support of Palestine’s enhancement of status at the UN. (Palestine News Network)

Hamas officials welcomed the General Assembly vote recognizing Palestine as a non-member observer State. Hamas leader Mashaal said that the vote would "unify Palestinian national efforts" as part of the reconciliation process with Fatah. (Ma’an News Agency)

The UN move to upgrade Palestine’s status was a strong gesture of support to the Palestinians that could help to end the stalemate in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, said Russian Federation Permanent Representative to the UN Churkin. (http://rt.com)

Canada’s Minister for Foreign Affairs John Baird issued a statement expressing its disappointment at the positive vote at the General Assembly, and informing of its decision to bring its heads of missions in Israel and Ramallah and Permanent Representatives to the UN back to Ottawa temporarily “to assess the implications of yesterday’s UN General Assembly vote and inform Canada’s response to it”. The statement furthermore stated that “Canada will now review the full range of its bilateral relationship with the Palestinian Authority”. (www.international.gc.ca)

Prosecutors at the International Criminal Court said that they would study what the PA’s upgraded status following the adoption of the General Assembly resolution meant for its relationship with the Court, in particular, the legal implications of the resolution. (AP)

Palestine's recognition as a non-member observer State of the UN had brought with it obligations under international law, Amnesty International said. Palestine was in a position to ratify the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court and other human rights and international humanitarian law treaties, bolstering accountability for human rights violations and crimes under international law, the organization added. (Amnesty International)

PA President Abbas said that UN recognition would require the international community to hold Israel accountable for the infractions it had committed since 1967. (Ynetnews)

President Abbas told reporters in New York that the Palestinians were ready to resume negotiations and added: "We are not setting any condition but there are at least 15 UN resolutions which consider settlement activity as illegal and an obstacle to peace which must be removed … Why do (the Israelis) not stop settlement?" (AFP)

A senior PLO official announced that PA President Abbas was planning to visit the Gaza Strip following the UN vote. (The Jerusalem Post)

Israel authorized the construction of 3,000 new settlement units, including preliminary zoning and planning work for thousands of units in East Jerusalem and settlement blocks including “Ma’ale Adumim” and the “E1” corridor. Israel had frozen much of its activities in “E1” under pressure from former US President George W. Bush, and the area had been under the scrutiny of his successor, President Obama. (AFP, Reuters)

The Vatican hailed the United Nations implicit recognition of a Palestinian State and called for "an internationally guaranteed special statute" for Jerusalem, aimed at "safeguarding the freedom of religion and of conscience, the identity and sacred character of Jerusalem as a Holy City, [and] respect for, and freedom of, access to its holy places." (Reuters)

The General Assembly concluded its debate on the question of Palestine and adopted four resolutions on: the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People (106 to 7, with 56 abstentions); the Division for Palestinian Rights (103 to 7, with 61 abstentions); the special information programme on the question of Palestine of the Department of Public Information (160 to 7, with 7 abstentions), and on the peaceful settlement of the question of Palestine (163 to 6, with 5 abstentions). Under the agenda item “the situation in the Middle East”, the Assembly adopted resolutions on Jerusalem and the Syrian Golan. (UN press release GA/11319)

A survey conducted among Israelis between 21 and 26 November indicated that 51 per cent of them did not believe that a peace agreement would be reached with the Palestinians, while 40 per cent thought that peace would be possible. (Ynetnews)

Human rights groups have reacted angrily to reports that Israel’s Ministry of Transportation was considering operating separate buses for Jews and Palestinians in the West Bank, following recent complaints from Jewish settlers who claimed that Palestinian day labourers returning to the West Bank posed a “security threat”. Israeli human rights group B’Tselem said that the Ministry, like all other governmental bodies, could not provide services on a discriminatory basis and there was no legal justification for separating Palestinians from Israelis. B’Tselem Executive Director Jessica Montell said that State-provided services must be available on an equal basis to all. (www.irishtimes.com)

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, in his remarks before the General Assembly following the adoption of the resolution upgrading Palestine’s status at the UN, underscored the urgency of a resumption of negotiations “to ensure that an independent, sovereign, democratic, contiguous and viable State of Palestine lives side by side with a secure State of Israel”. (www.un.org)


____________

Follow UNISPAL RSS Twitter