News of Terrorism and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (June 17 – 23, 2020)

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Disinfecting the village of Taffuh, an epicenter of COVID-19 infection in the Hebron district (Facebook page of journalist Samer al-Sharawi, June 22, 2020).

Disinfecting the village of Taffuh, an epicenter of COVID-19 infection in the Hebron district (Facebook page of journalist Samer al-Sharawi, June 22, 2020).

Disinfecting the village of Taffuh, an epicenter of COVID-19 infection in the Hebron district (Facebook page of journalist Samer al-Sharawi, June 22, 2020).

Disinfecting the village of Taffuh, an epicenter of COVID-19 infection in the Hebron district (Facebook page of journalist Samer al-Sharawi, June 22, 2020).

Meeting of the Hamas faction of the Legislative Council in Gaza (Facebook page of the Hamas faction, June 16, 2020).

Meeting of the Hamas faction of the Legislative Council in Gaza (Facebook page of the Hamas faction, June 16, 2020).

The Popular Committee to Fight the Annexation Plan (aeinnnews Twitter account, June 18, 2020).

The Popular Committee to Fight the Annexation Plan (aeinnnews Twitter account, June 18, 2020).

The Popular Committee to Fight the Annexation Plan (aeinnnews Twitter account, June 18, 2020).

The Popular Committee to Fight the Annexation Plan (aeinnnews Twitter account, June 18, 2020).

Protest march in the Jabalia refugee camp (Palestine Online Twitter account, June 19, 2020).

Protest march in the Jabalia refugee camp (Palestine Online Twitter account, June 19, 2020).

Protest march in the Jabalia refugee camp (Palestine Online Twitter account, June 19, 2020).

Protest march in the Jabalia refugee camp (Palestine Online Twitter account, June 19, 2020).

Jibril Rajoub launches activities during a press conference in Ramallah (Jibril Rajoub's Facebook page, June 21, 2020).

Jibril Rajoub launches activities during a press conference in Ramallah (Jibril Rajoub’s Facebook page, June 21, 2020).

Rally in Jericho protesting Israel's annexation plans. The sign reads,

Rally in Jericho protesting Israel’s annexation plans. The sign reads, ” Palestine is not for sale and to the garbage heap of history with the deal of the century” (Wafa, June 22, 2020).

Rally in Jericho protesting Israel's annexation plans. The sign reads,

Rally in Jericho protesting Israel’s annexation plans. The sign reads, ” Palestine is not for sale and to the garbage heap of history with the deal of the century” (Wafa, June 22, 2020).

  • Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip have been relatively quiet (with the exception of the throwing of stones and Molotov cocktails at Israeli vehicles driving on roads in Judea and Samaria). Most of the PA and Hamas’ attention has been devoted to the fight against COVID-19 and the campaign against Israel’s “annexation plan.
  • The number of active COVID-19 cases in Judea and Samaria spiked this past week, considered in the PA as a second wave of infection. The number of active cases rose in one week from 71 to 618. The Hebron district is the epicenter of infection, with 581 active cases (about 94% of all patients in Judea and Samaria). On the other hand, Hamas continues to control the spread of the virus (with only 15 active cases).[1]
  • The widespread outbreak of coronavirus in Judea and Samaria has drawn a considerable amount of attention in the PA towards dealing with the virus and away from the campaign against Israel. That was evident at a rally held in Jericho which was supposed to be the opening shot in events to protest Israel’s annexation plans. The rally, which was attended by foreign representatives, had about 2,500 participants (most of them apparently arriving via organized transportation), about half of what was expected. In addition to calls to the Europeans, Jordan and other countries to support the Palestinian campaign, the PA and Fatah made efforts, led by Jibril Rajoub, to recruit the Palestinian public for a popular protest. So far the PA seems to be having difficulties, on the one hand because of the coronavirus crisis and its attendant problems, and on the other because of the lack of faith of the Palestinian public in the PA leadership.
  • In the meantime the PA and its security forces continue taking measures to implement Mahmoud Abbas’ declaration to end relations with Israel and finding a response to the moves Israel is expected to make. This past week the PA security forces reportedly destroyed secret documents out of concern the Israeli security forces would raid their offices. There were also reports about the PA’s stopping the transfer of population registration documents to Israel and about the promotion of companies, incentives and projects to develop the Jordan Valley. In the meantime problems have arisen, caused by the Palestinian measures. Following the PA;s refusal to receive tax revenues from Israel, the payment of PA employees’ salaries was postponed, and the families of oncology patients staged a demonstration in front of the government offices in Ramallah demanding that patients be sent to hospitals in Israel for treatment.
Judea and Samaria

The spike in the number of COVID-19 cases in Judea and Samaria continues. At 11 a.m. on June 23, 2020, Mai al-Kayla, PA minister of health, reported that the number of active cases stood at 618 (160 cases more than the previous day). Most of the active cases (551) are in the Hebron district (compared with 399 on June 22, 2020). There are 32 cases in the Hebron district, and in the districts of Bethlehem, 17; Ramallah, nine; Jenin four; Tulkarm, three; and Jericho, two. The number of active cases in east Jerusalem currently stands at 30 (after the addition of 11 new cases on June 23, 2020, and the recovery of 19 patients). Since the outbreak of the coronavirus in Judea and Samaria 1,006 cases have been detected (Facebook page of the Palestinian ministry of health, June 23, 2020).

Spike in the number of COVID-19 cases in Judea and Samaria over the past week

Spike in the number of COVID-19 cases in Judea and Samaria over the past week

Preventive Measures
  •  Following the spike in the number of active cases in the Hebron district, a full lockdown was imposed for five days. Store owners in the city of Hebron were ordered to close their doors and local residents received stay-at-home orders. Large numbers of security forces deployed in the village of Taffuh (west of Hebron) which was an epicenter of the virus, and the village was completely locked down (Facebook page of journalist Samer al-Sharawi, June 22, 2020).
  • The rise in the number of cases in Judea and Samaria focused users of the Palestinian social media on the coronavirus. Many of them wrote posts suggesting they had panicked. Some called for the lockdown of other regions where active cases had been detected. Others objected to the lockdown and even took the side of the workers who went to Israel every day because they had to support their families.
Appointment of senior public health system officials criticized as nepotism
  • In the midst of the COVID-19 crisis Mai al-Kayla, PA minister of health, appointed Wa’el al-Sheikh, the nephew of Hussein al-Sheikh, a member of Fatah’s Central Committee, as acting deputy minister of health. Wa’el al-Sheikh’s previous position as head of the department of health of the Ramallah and al-Bireh district was given to Mutasem Jamal Muheisen, the son of Fatah Central Committee member Jamal Muheisen. Their appointment led to protests on the social media (al-Araby al-Jadeed, June 22, 2020; Ultra Palestine website, June 22, 2020). For example, Fadhel Suleiman wrote, “Whoever labored – found [what he was working towards], and whoever has a father on the Central Committee – profited [from the relationship]” (Facebook page of Fadhel Suleiman, June 22,2020)
Post about the appointment of Wa'el al-Sheikh (right) and Mutasem Muheisen, headed "Lords of the earth" (satirical Facebook page entitled "Mush hik," June 21, 2020).   Cartoon in response to appointments, headed "It's not what you know, it's whom you know..." (Shehab Twitter account, June 22, 2020).
Right: Cartoon in response to appointments, headed “It’s not what you know, it’s whom you know…” (Shehab Twitter account, June 22, 2020). Left: Post about the appointment of Wa’el al-Sheikh (right) and Mutasem Muheisen, headed “Lords of the earth” (satirical Facebook page entitled “Mush hik,” June 21, 2020).
The Gaza Strip[2]
  • On June 22, 2020, the ministry of health in the Gaza Strip reported that tests conducted during the previous 24 hours did not detect new COVID-19 cases (al-Ra’i news agency, June 22, 2020). So far the number of COVID-19 cases stands at 72, of whom 15 are active and being treated in the quarantine center at the Rafah Crossing. Fifty-six patients have recovered; one has died.
  • Dr. Ashraf al-Qidra, spokesman for the ministry of health in Gaza, reported that as of now the Rafah Crossing is closed and there is no date for its reopening. He said that according to medical protocol, all those who enter the Gaza Strip through the Rafah Crossing or the Erez Crossing must be quarantined for 21 days. He again complained of the shortage of medical equipment. He said that in the Gaza Strip there is a shortage of 44% of basic drugs, 30% of medical equipment and 65% of laboratory equipment. He also condemned the conduct of the PA, saying that Gaza had not received equipment from the ministry of health in Ramallah (al-Aqsa, June 22, 2020).
Rocket and mortar shell fire into Israel
  • This past week no rocket hits were identified in Israeli territory.
Rocket explodes in northern Gaza Strip before launching
  • The social networks reported that on the night of June 19, 2020, an explosion was heard in the northern Gaza Strip near the so-called “Palestine” post. Apparently a rocket exploded before it could be fired (Paldf, June 19, 2020; Twitter account of the Voice of al-Quds radio station, June 20, 2020).
Monthly Distribution of Rocket and Mortar Shell Fire

Monthly Distribution of Rocket and Mortar Shell Fire

Annual Distribution of Rocket Hits

Annual Distribution of Rocket Hits

Launching of IED/incendiary balloons into Israeli territory
  • This past week the balloon-launching units of the various terrorist organizations continued threatening to renew IED/incendiary balloon launching into Israeli territory. The joint operations room of the Hamas-affiliated Sons of al-Zawari units said in an announcement that in light of the fact that Israel (“the enemy”) did not keep promises it made in the past, did not extend the fishing zone and did not deliver fuel to the Gaza Strip, they had decided to make good on their threats and use their activities to force Israel to adhere to the understandings. They said that “[Israel] should not forget the summers of 2019 and 2019, when we made you taste the bitterness of fires and we launched suffering at you…” (Facebook page of the joint operations room of the Sons of al-Zawari, June 18, 2020). In reality, this past week no IED/incendiary balloons were located in Israeli territory.
Smuggling of weapons into the Gaza Strip prevented
  • Three months ago the Israeli security forces prevented weapons from being smuggled into Gaza by sea from the northern Sinai Peninsula. The Israeli security forces detained the people involved and after a chase at sea, the boat used for smuggling the weapons was halted as well. Two operatives were detained, one of them was Muhammad Bakr, a known weapons smuggler working for a number of terrorist organizations. According to the investigation, the weapons they tried to smuggle intended for Hamas naval commandos (IDF spokesman, June 17, 2020).
Stones and Molotov cocktails thrown at Israeli vehicles
  • In Judea and Samaria Palestinians continued throwing stones and Molotov cocktails at Israeli vehicles and at Israeli security forces. On June 21, 2020, during an IDF activity near the village of Deir Abu Mash’al (northwest of Ramallah) the fighters saw two Palestinians throwing rocks and Molotov cocktails at civilian Israeli vehicles. They shot at the Palestinians, wounding one; the other escaped (IDF spokesman, June 21, 2020).
  • The more notable events were the following:
    • June 22, 2020 – Molotov cocktails were thrown at civilian Israeli vehicles east of Ariel, causing a fire. No casualties were reported (Rescue Without Borders in Judea and Samaria, June 22, 2020).
    • June 21, 2020 – Stones were thrown at an civilian Israeli vehicle on a road west of Ramallah. No casualties were reported; the vehicle was damaged Rescue Without Borders in Judea and Samaria, June 21 ,2020).
    • June 21, 2020 – Palestinians built a barrier of rocks on the road southwest of Ariel. An Israeli vehicle drove into the barrier and was damaged. No casualties were reported (Rescue Without Borders in Judea and Samaria, June 21, 2020).
    • June 18, 2020 – Stones were thrown at a civilian Israeli bus south of Nablus. No casualties were reported; the bus was damaged (Rescue Without Borders in Judea and Samaria, June 18, 2020).
    • June 18, 2020 – Stones were thrown at an Israeli vehicle southeast of Ramallah. No casualties were reported (Rescue Without Borders in Judea and Samaria, June 18, 2020)
    • June 17, 2020 – Stones were thrown at the vehicle of an IDF officer on a road in the Jordan Valley. No casualties were reported; the Palestinian who threw the stones was apprehended (Rescue Without Borders in Judea and Samaria, June 17, 2020).
    •  June 17, 2020 – Border Police fighters detained a Palestinian woman who arrived at a check point near the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron. A knife was found in her purse. She was taken for interrogation (Rescue Without Borders in Judea and Samaria, June 17, 2020).
    • June 17, 2020 – A Molotov cocktail was thrown at the security fence of the Israeli community of Karmei Tzur (north of Hebron), causing a fire (Rescue Without Borders in Judea and Samaria, June 17, 2020).
    • June 16, 2020 – Stones were thrown at civilian Israeli vehicles south of Nablus. No casualties were reported; the vehicles were damaged (Rescue Without Borders in Judea and Samaria, June 16, 2020).
Significant terrorist attacks in Judea and Samaria since January 2019[3]

Significant terrorist attacks in Judea and Samaria since January 2019

Campaign to protest Israel’s annexation plan
  • In addition to the PA’s protest campaign, the terrorist organizations in the Gaza Strip, led by Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), announced they were launching activities to protest Israel’s annexation plan. Statements from Hamas and PIJ leaders included threats of an armed struggle and an intifada. Some of them continue protesting against the PA, which, they claim, has not in practice separated itself from Israel. Maher Saleh, secretary of Hamas “abroad,” said Hamas had formulated a plan to “resist” the annexation, beginning in the West Bank and including other territories. He called for support for the residents of Jerusalem, stressing that he was certain of their ability to defend al-Aqsa mosque (Dunia al-Watan, June 20, 2020).
  • At a meeting of the Hamas faction of the Legislative Council, senior Hamas figure Mahmoud al-Zahar called for energizing the “resistance” using all measures to respond to the annexation plan with an intifada. Salah al-Bardawil, a member of the Hamas’ political bureau and the Legislative Council, said the Palestinian organizations had formulated a comprehensive plan to fight annexation (Facebook page of the Hamas faction, June 16, 2020).
Meeting of the Hamas faction of the Legislative Council in Gaza (Facebook page of the Hamas faction, June 16, 2020).    Meeting of the Hamas faction of the Legislative Council in Gaza (Facebook page of the Hamas faction, June 16, 2020).
Meeting of the Hamas faction of the Legislative Council in Gaza
(Facebook page of the Hamas faction, June 16, 2020).
  • On June 17, 2020, Hamas convened a meeting of the “Popular Committee to Fight the Annexation Plan and the Deal of the Century.” Khalil al-Haya, a member of Hamas’ political bureau, said the time had come for Gaza to use its weapons to defend the Palestinian cause (Hamas website, June 17, 2020). A speech by Saleh al-‘Arouri, deputy head of Hamas’ political bureau, was televised. He called for a new wave of “resistance” [i.e., terrorism], so that Israel would understand that it was facing a tidal wave of “resistance” activities for which it had no response (Hamas website, June 17, 2020).
 The Popular Committee to Fight the Annexation Plan (aeinnnews Twitter account, June 18, 2020).      The Popular Committee to Fight the Annexation Plan (aeinnnews Twitter account, June 18, 2020).
The Popular Committee to Fight the Annexation Plan
(aeinnnews Twitter account, June 18, 2020).
  • On Friday, June 19, 2020, after the prayers in the mosques, Hamas held a march in the Jabalia refugee camp to protest the [Israel] annexation decision and the “deal of the century.” Senior Hamas figures participated in the march (Hamas website, June 19, 2020)
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) march held in the Jabalia refugee camp on June 18, 2020). There were signs with pictures of the rulers of the Gulf States marked with an X. The signs read, "Normalization [of relations with Israel] is treason." Marchers also held pictures of Donald Trump, Benjamin Netanyahu and Israel Defense Minister Benny Ganz, all marked X. The signs read, "No to the policy of annexation and the plans to destroy [the Palestinian cause." As the march ended the signs were set on fire.   Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) march held in the Jabalia refugee camp on June 18, 2020). There were signs with pictures of the rulers of the Gulf States marked with an X. The signs read, "Normalization [of relations with Israel] is treason." Marchers also held pictures of Donald Trump, Benjamin Netanyahu and Israel Defense Minister Benny Ganz, all marked X. The signs read, "No to the policy of annexation and the plans to destroy [the Palestinian cause." As the march ended the signs were set on fire.
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) march held in the Jabalia refugee camp on June 18, 2020). There were signs with pictures of the rulers of the Gulf States marked with an X. The signs read, “Normalization [of relations with Israel] is treason.” Marchers also held pictures of Donald Trump, Benjamin Netanyahu and Israel Defense Minister Benny Ganz, all marked X. The signs read, “No to the policy of annexation and the plans to destroy [the Palestinian cause.” As the march ended the signs were set on fire.
  • Senior Hamas and PIJ figures gave speeches calling for action against the Israeli plan:
    • Senior Hamas figure Fathi Hamad said the Palestinian decision to resist the American “deal of the century” and the Israeli annexation plan would be manifested by every means the Palestinians had at their disposal. He called on the Palestinians to rise up and unite under the flag of “resistance and jihad” (al-Aqsa, June 19, 2020).
    • Senior Hamas figure Musheir al-Masri called on Palestinians living in the West Bank to rise up against Israel because they were “the first line of defense.” He said the residents of the West Bank were those who had courageously resisted in the past using explosives, suicide bombing attacks and intifadas. He said that for the sake of Palestine the Palestinians would sacrifice themselves and use their weapons, their missiles, they would blow up [Israeli] buses and carry out suicide bombing attacks (al-Aqsa, June 19, 2020).

Musheir al-Masri speaking in the Jabalia refugee camp (Palestine Online Twitter account, June 19, 2020).
Musheir al-Masri speaking in the Jabalia refugee camp
(Palestine Online Twitter account, June 19, 2020).

  • Senior PIJ figure Ahmed al-Mudallal said Israel had to be confronted in the West Bank, even igniting an intifada. He called for giving the “resistance” free rein to act, especially with “armed resistance” [i.e., terrorist attacks]. He added that the entire Gaza Strip would support the West Bank’s struggle (alresala.net, June 17, 2020).
The ongoing PA campaign against Israel’s intention to annex territories

Overview

The PA continues its public, media and diplomatic activity in preparation for July 1, 2020, the date of the imposition of Israeli sovereignty on parts of Judea and Samaria. This past week the PA launched a campaign to get the Palestinian public in Judea and Samaria to demonstrate and protest Israel’s planned move. At the hub of the campaign is senior Fatah figure Jibril Rajoub.[4]

  • According to Jibril Rajoub, the Palestinians have a strategy consisting of stages to fight Israel’s annexation plan. The first stage was the declaration of ending political, security, economic, legal and administrative connections with Israel. The second stage is reneging on commitment to all agreements with Israel. The third stage is the decision to demand, at a specific point in time, that Israel take responsibility as the occupying power of the Palestinian territories. He also threatened that if Israel does actually annex territories, the Palestinians will take to the streets and treat Israel as an enemy (Palestinian TV, June 21, 2020).
  • The main Palestinian activity this past week was a rally organized by Fatah and the PA and held in Jericho on June 22. 2020. It was attended by senior PA figures as well as (exceptionally) representatives from other countries, the EU and the UN (see below). Despite the PA’s efforts to enlist as many participants as possible, the protest was limited and Palestinian participation in the rally did not meet the PA’s expectations.
  • Thus apparently even in this struggle the PA finds it hard to enlist the Palestinian public to participate in large popular protest activities. In ITIC assessment the lack of public response is caused by a number of factors, among them the rise in the number of COVID-19 cases in Judea and Samaria, the lack of public interest in political issues and the lack of faith in the leadership.

The internal Palestinian arena

  • This past week the PA and Fatah leaderships held a series of meetings and conferences. Fatah’s Central Committee held a conference where they decided to hold popular anti-annexation activities in all the districts, and Jibril Rajoub, secretary of Fatah’s Central Committee, was put in charge (Wafa, June 19, 2020). Mahmoud al-‘Alul, deputy Fatah Central Committee chairman, said legal committees had been appointed to examine the possibility of declaring a constituent assembly[5] (Sama, June 20 2020).
  • The PLO’s Central Committee held a meeting to discuss the continuation of the protest activities. According to Mahmoud Abbas, who chaired the meeting, the way to peace was through commitment to the decisions of international institutions and the establishment of a Palestinian state with the 1967 borders and east Jerusalem as it capital (Wafa, June 19, 2020). The meeting discussed enlarging popular activities, especially in regions under the threat of Israeli annexation, such as the Jordan Valley (Amad, June 17, 2020).
Mahmoud Abbas speaking at a meeting of Fatah's Central Committee in Ramallah (Wafa, June 19, 2020).    Mahmoud Abbas speaking at a meeting of Fatah's Central Committee in Ramallah (Wafa, June 19, 2020).
Mahmoud Abbas speaking at a meeting of Fatah’s Central Committee in Ramallah
(Wafa, June 19, 2020).

The international arena

  • The PA continues its diplomatic activity to enlist global public opinion in support of the Palestinians. According to Saeb Erekat, secretary of the PLO’s Executive Committee, 192 countries announced, in different ways, their objection to Israel’s plan. Some even threatened to impose sanctions on Israel (Sawa, June 22, 2020).
  • On June 18, 2020, Ayman al-Safadi, the Jordanian foreign minister, arrived in Ramallah for a visit. At a meeting with Mahmoud Abbas they discussed Israel’s annexation plan, and he gave Mahmoud Abbas a communiqué from the Jordanian king (Twitter account of the Jordanian foreign ministry, June 18, 2020). Al-Safadi held a press conference with Riyad al-Maliki, Palestinian foreign minister, where he said that Jordan’s position was that the rights of the Palestinians had to be realized, one of which was the establishment of an independent country with the 1967 borders (Wafa, June 18, 2020). Fatah spokesman Usama al-Qawasmeh said Jordan regarded the annexation as a serious blow to its peace agreement with Israel (al-Mayadeen, June 19, 2020).
  • A Palestinian source revealed that the PA asked Jordan and Egypt to send identical communiqués to Israel and the United States stating that Israel’s continued adhering to its decision to annex Palestinian territories would harm the peace agreements they had signed with Israel (al-Araby al-Jadeed, June 20, 2020).

Encouraging “popular” protests and demonstrations

  • The PA and Fatah held a protest rally in Jericho on June 22, 2020. It was supposed to be the opening shot in a series of protest activities (Palestinian TV, June 21, 2020). About 2,500 participated in the rally, half of what had been expected, even though the PA organized buses to bring participants from the various districts. Among the participants were PA Prime Minister Muhammad Shtayyeh, Jibril Rajoub, secretary of Fatah’s Executive Committee, and Saeb Erekat, secretary of the PLO’s Executive Committee. There were also representatives from European countries, from China, Japan and Jordan, and Nikolay Mladenov, the UN envoy to the peace process, and the EU representative in the PA.
  • Palestinians spokesmen threatened they would fight against Israel’s decision. Some of them, such as Walid Assaf, chairman of the authority for the fight against the fence and construction in the settlements, said the struggle would be carried out by “popular resistance” [i.e., popular terrorism] (Palestinian TV, June 22, 2020). Saeb Erekat noted the “unprecedented” participation of international figures, which proved, he claimed, the Palestinians were not alone. He said the EU was interested in holding an international conference that would lead to the renewal of talks between Israel and the Palestinians. He added he was certain that the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) and the court judges were listening to what was being said at the rally (Palestinian TV, June 22, 2020).

Cutting ties with Israel: continuing practical measures

  • Palestinian security sources told Agence France-Presse that following instructions of high-ranking Palestinian security officers, Palestinian security force operatives had destroyed secret documents out a concern that Israeli forces would raid their offices. A different source said the destruction of the documents had begun immediately after Mahmoud Abbas’s declaration on May 19, 2020, about ending the agreements with Israel (France 24, June 16, 2020).
  • According to a program aired on al-Mayadeen TV, the PA stopped sending population registration documents to Israel, and they were working to get international support to exert pressure on Israel to recognize the Palestinian population documents. According to the program, Israel is not giving up control of the Palestinian population registry and is exploiting its position to disrupt the passage of Palestinians through the crossings (al-Mayadeen, June 21, 2020).
  • At a Palestinian government meeting, PA Prime Minister Muhammad Shtayyeh said a committee would be appointed which would include the minister of the treasury, the minister of agriculture and the minister of international economic affairs to promote a package of incentives and projects to develop the Jordan Valley (Wafa, June 22, 2020).
  • Signs of the ending of coordination with Israel are already being manifested:
  •  Given the PA’s refusal to take tax revenues from Israel (which may also be a way to exert pressure on Palestinian residents), the payment of salaries to PA employees has been postponed. Muhammad al-Laham, a member of Fatah’s Revolutionary Council, said it was possible that some of the salaries would be paid, but it was also possible that they would pay only part of the salaries for this month and next month (30% or 40%). He said the payment of salaries depended on the budget for the coming months, and that he expected the crisis to continue for several months (Dunia al-Watan, June 16, 2020).
Cartoon of the dissatisfaction of PA employees, who sing a song popular during the first intifada, "Where are the millions?" (Facebook page of cartoonist Isma'il al-Bazam, June 19, 2020). Left: Cartoon criticizing the PA's refusal to receive tax revenues from Israel, which is a hard blow to needy families (Facebook page of cartoonist Isma'il al-Bazam, June 21, 2020).   Cartoon of the dissatisfaction of PA employees, who sing a song popular during the first intifada, "Where are the millions?" (Facebook page of cartoonist Isma'il al-Bazam, June 19, 2020). Left: Cartoon criticizing the PA's refusal to receive tax revenues from Israel, which is a hard blow to needy families (Facebook page of cartoonist Isma'il al-Bazam, June 21, 2020).
Cartoon of the dissatisfaction of PA employees, who sing a song popular during the first intifada, “Where are the millions?” (Facebook page of cartoonist Isma’il al-Bazam, June 19, 2020). Left: Cartoon criticizing the PA’s refusal to receive tax revenues from Israel, which is a hard blow to needy families (Facebook page of cartoonist Isma’il al-Bazam, June 21, 2020).
  • The families of cancer patients held a rally in front of the government offices in Ramallah to demand patients again be sent to Israel for treatment. The families want the patients considered as exceptions from the procedures to end coordination with Israel. The families said that the health of their relatives was failing. They demanded the PA finance their transfer to hospitals in Israel (Watan, June 17, 2020).

[1] For further information, see the June 22, 2020 bulletin, “Spike in the Number of COVID-19 Infections in the Palestinian Authority Territories – Overview and Analysis (Updated to June 22, 2020).

[2] For further information, see the June 21, 2020 bulletin, “The Fight Against COVID-19 in the Gaza Strip.


[3] A significant attack is defined by the ITIC as involving shooting, a vehicular attack, the use of IEDs, or a combination of the above. Stones and Molotov cocktails thrown by Palestinians are not included.


[4] Jibril Rajoub held a press conference where he called on Palestinians to participate in all the activities what would be held in the coming days. He also called on Palestinians living in Europe to demonstration in front of the Israeli and United States embassies (Palestinian TV, June 21, 2020).


[5] An assembly of popularly elected representatives which is assembled for the purpose of drafting or adopting a constitution or similar document (Wikipedia)



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