United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in the occupied Palestinian Territory (OCHA): Bi-weekly report (August 25 – September 7, 2020)

  • An Israeli civilian was killed and an Israeli police officer and a soldier were injured by Palestinians in two separate incidents. On 26 August, a Palestinian stabbed to death an Israeli man in the city of Petah Tikva, in Israel. The suspected assailant, a 46-year-old man from the Nablus area, reportedly holding a work permit, was subsequently arrested. In the West Bank, a Palestinian drove his car into Israeli forces at the Za’atra checkpoint, in the Nablus governorate, causing light injuries to a soldier and a police officer; the driver was shot and injured, reportedly after he exited the car and ran towards the forces while brandishing a knife, and subsequently arrested. On 6 September, a Palestinian attempted to stab an Israeli soldier near the Ariel settlement (Salfit) and was arrested.
  • Seventy Palestinians and two Israeli soldiers were injured in various clashes across the West Bank. Most Palestinian injuries were sustained in clashes that erupted during five search-and-arrest operations. Another eight Palestinians were shot with live ammunition and injured in various incidents while attempting to cross into Israel through breached sections of the Barrier in the northern West Bank. Three Palestinians and two Israeli soldiers were injured during clashes in Hebron city. Of the Palestinians injured, ten were hit by live ammunition, two were hit by rubber bullets, and two were physically assaulted, while the others inhaled tear gas, requiring medical treatment.
  • Overall, Israeli forces conducted 152 search-and-arrest operations across the West Bank, arresting 117 Palestinians. On the overnight of 7 September, a large-scale operation took place across the Hebron governorate, with at least 30 Palestinians being arrested. Another large operation was carried out on 26 August across multiple East Jerusalem neighbourhoods simultaneously, in which ten people were arrested, reportedly for working for the Palestinian Authority in East Jerusalem, in contravention to Israeli law. Regular policing activities and related tensions in Al-‘Isawiya neighbourhood of East Jerusalem continued; in one incident, a journalist was arrested and his equipment was confiscated.
  • On 31 August, after over three weeks of intermittent hostilities in Gaza and southern Israel, relative calm was restored and the Israeli access restrictions imposed in that context were lifted. During the escalation 12 Palestinians and six Israelis had been injured, and extensive damage to property on both sides had been recorded. Following the de-escalation the entry of goods, including construction materials and fuel, resumed, reducing daily power cuts to 12-16 hours, while the permissible fishing areas were restored to pre-escalation level, up to 15 nautical miles off the southern shore.
  • On at least 17 occasions, Israeli forces opened fire near Israel’s perimeter fence with Gaza, and off its coast, presumably to enforce access restrictions, resulting in no injuries. Also, on three occasions, Israeli forces entered Gaza and carried out land-leveling and excavation operations near the perimeter fence.
  • On 31 August, two Palestinian children aged 8 and 12 were injured as explosive remnants of war (ERW) they handled detonated while they were collecting scrap metal near Khuza’a village (Khan Younis). Since the end of the last large-scale hostilities in Gaza, in 2014, 19 Palestinians have been killed and 172 injured by ERW.
  • Thirty-three Palestinian-owned structures were demolished or seized for the lack of Israeli-issued building permits, displacing 98 Palestinians, over half of whom were children, and otherwise affecting about 100 people. Most demolitions and displacements were recorded in Area C, with the largest number of displacements (45 people) recorded in two incidents in the Bedouin community of Wadi As Seeq (Ramallah). Also, 12 people were displaced following the demolition of five structures in the herding community of Jinba (Hebron), located in an area designated as a ‘firing zone’ for Israeli military training. In Ras at Tin, another herding community located in a ‘firing zone’ in the Ramallah area, parts of a donor-funded school, which was under construction, along with equipment and construction materials, were seized. Four demolitions in East Jerusalem resulted in the displacement of 39 people; in three of these incidents, the demolitions were carried out by the owners, who were forced to do so to avoid additional fees and fines.
  • Two Palestinians were injured and Palestinian-owned property was vandalized in settler-related incidents. Palestinians from Kafr Malik (Ramallah) clashed with Israeli settlers, when the latter attempted to set up a new outpost on the village’s land; Israeli forces who intervened in the incident shot with live ammunition and injured a Palestinian man. In another incident, a Palestinian woman was stoned and injured while travelling on Road 60, in the Nablus governorate; three more cars sustained damage by stones. A shepherd from At Tuwani village (South Hebron) reported that a settler had rammed into his sheep, killing ten and injuring five. In three separate incidents, settlers vandalized four vehicles in Asira al Qibliya and Huwwara (both in Nablus), where they sprayed graffiti on the walls of houses, and on Road 60 in the Hebron governorate. Additionally, a staircase leading to a kindergarten in the H2 area of Hebron was damaged by settlers.
  • Three Israelis were injured and 12 vehicles were damaged as a result of stone-throwing by assailants believed to be Palestinians, according to Israeli sources. The stones were thrown at Israeli-plated vehicles driving on West Bank roads.