No ‘Status Quo’ in Jerusalem, Yet; Gaza’s Electricity Crisis Continues

What We’re Reading


Israel reopens Jerusalem's Noble Sanctuary after deadly shooting,

Israel reopened Jerusalem’s Noble Sanctuary-Temple Mount compound on Sunday, drawing a protest by Muslim religious authorities over the installation of metal detectors at entrances two days after a deadly shooting.

After Temple Mount Attack, Netanyahu and Abbas Work Together for Once,

Unlike previous instances, Netanyahu didn’t lash out publicly at Abbas and didn’t accuse him of incitement or responsibility for the attack. And the Palestinian president, unusually, condemned the attack and even issued an official statement of condemnation in Arabic. He also refrained from lambasting Israel publicly regarding the closure of the Temple Mount and pursued the matter through quiet diplomacy.

Waqf urges Muslims to boycott Temple Mount over metal detectors,

The Muslim religious authority charged with managing the Temple Mount joined with other Islamic groups on Monday to call on Muslims “to reject and boycott all the Israeli aggression measures, including changing the historical status quo including imposing the metal detectors.”

Police uncover weapons, but no guns, in Temple Mount searches,

Police have arrested eight suspects and uncovered dozens of weapons following a deadly terror attack by three Arab Israelis just outside the Temple Mount compound on Friday in which two officers were killed, the Jerusalem Police chief said.

Knesset Committee Approves Bill Requiring Supermajority To Divide Jerusalem,

The Ministerial Committee for Legislation approved an amendment to an existing Basic Law that would require a majority of at least 80 Knesset members to pass a decision to give up land in Jerusalem. The legislation, which is supported by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his ruling government coalition, is expected to pass the required three readings in the Knesset.

PA minister accuses Israel of exploiting attack to dig under Temple Mount,

Adnan al-Husseini, the Palestinian Authority’s Jerusalem Affairs minister, on Sunday accused Israel of taking advantage of the recent two-day closure of the Temple Mount to check for ways to dig under the Al-Aqsa Mosque….While there are excavations being carried out near the Temple Mount, Israel denies that any digging has breached the ground underneath the holy site.

Occupation/Human Rights

Gaza is Headed for a Deeper Political and Humanitarian Crisis,

Gazans fear worse conditions, and rightly so. The Strip’s likely loss of Qatar as a funder and ally, as well as the all-but-guaranteed continuation of collective punishment measures inflicted on Gaza by the Palestinian Authority (PA), signal even more miserable living conditions. This may be hard to imagine after ten years of a brutal Israeli blockade, interspersed with assaults that have left thousands of civilians killed or wounded and infrastructure devastated, but the recent electricity crisis has shown how conditions can go from worse to even worse: As we went to publication, Gaza was totally without power. Beyond the human suffering, this situation exacerbates political fragmentation and undoubtedly weakens the Palestinian quest for self-determination and freedom.

Gaza’s power plant has resumed operations. Only four consecutive hours of electricity available to residents,

Residents receive electricity in cycles of four consecutive hours, at most, followed by 12 hours of outage. Since the start of the current electricity crisis, about three months ago, hospitals struggle to provide essential services; the sea and land are being polluted due to the inability to operate sewage treatment facilities; entire neighborhoods are plunged into darkness, and; medical patients, children, and the elderly are put at great risk.

Israeli navy shoots, injures 2 Palestinian fishermen off Gaza coast,

Israeli naval forces shot and injured two unarmed Palestinian fishermen who were working off the coast of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip overnight Sunday. Spokesman for the health ministry in Gaza Ashraf al-Qidra said the  two fishermen were evacuated to Nasser Medical Center in Khan Yunis for treatment. They were both shot in the feet, according to al-Qidra.

Joint report estimates that 388 Palestinians arrested in June 2017,

According to a joint report issued by The Palestinian Prisoners Society, Al-Mezan Center for Human Rights, Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association and the Prisoners Affairs Commission, in the month of June 2017, 388 Palestinians from the West Bank, Gaza Strip and Jerusalem were seized by Israeli occupation forces, including 70 children and six women.

Israeli forces kill suspected Palestinian gunman in West Bank raid,

Israeli forces killed a suspected Palestinian militant they were seeking to arrest after he shot at them in the occupied West Bank, police and the military said. Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said the man was suspected of carrying out two shooting attacks in the West Bank on Saturday and opened fire at soldiers and policemen who had tracked him down.

Israeli settlers set up illegal caravans on Palestinian village lands near Bethlehem,

A spokesperson from the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), the Israeli agency responsible for enforcing the Israeli government’s policies in the West Bank, told Ma’an that “The trailers built in al-Khader are illegal and lacking the necessary permits from the authorities. Enforcement steps will take place against them according to the procedures.”

Yet Another Military Trial in the Occupied Territories,

Military trials held by the Israeli army – a defining feature of the 50-year occupation – have a near 100-percent conviction rate and fall well short of any standards of justice. I recently attended a hearing in the trial of Palestinian human rights defenders Issa Amro and Farid al-Atrash, which is following down the same, well-trodden path.

Israeli Politics

Stop the Incitement,

But this attack also released the dark inclinations of those who are quick to target the Arab community in Israel. Their work was easy this time. The three assailants, members of a single family from Umm al-Fahm, provided such people with proof that the entire Arab population is an enemy that must be rooted out.

U.S.-Israel/Palestinian Relations

Israel frets over Congress push to slash Palestinian aid over terror payments,

A Republican effort to prohibit US aid to the Palestinians until they stop payments to the families of those imprisoned or killed for attacking Israelis is running into opposition from a surprising source: Israel.