Chronology 16 August–15 November 2007
Abstract: 

COMPILED BY MICHELE K. ESPOSITO
16 AUGUST

In the West Bank, Israel Defense Forces (IDF) soldiers conduct arrest raids, house searches in and around Hebron; patrol in and around Jenin. In Gaza, where Israel has completely sealed borders to all but humanitarian aid since Hamas’s 6/15/07 ouster of Fatah (see Quarterly Update), 3 Hamas mbrs. are injured when rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) they are handling explode prematurely. The Hamas-dominated Executive Support Force (ESF) detains pro-Fatah Palestinian Authority (PA) Atty. Gen. Ahmad Mughami when he returns to Gaza, which he had fled during the 6/07 intra-Palestinian clashes, and orders him to stay away fr. his offices; Mughami refuses to resign, is released. (NYT 8/17; OCHA 8/22; PCHR 8/23)

17 AUGUST

In Gaza, Palestinians begin experiencing longer blackouts resulting fr. fuel shortages since Israel closed the Nahal Oz pipeline on 8/15. Hamas volunteers undertake a clean-up campaign in Khan Yunis, where municipal sanitation workers have been on strike over salary issues. The IDF makes an air strike on an Islamic Jihad rocket-launching site nr. Bayt Lahiya in n. Gaza, causing no injuries. A 10-yr.-old Palestinian boy is injured when a Palestinian rocket fired fr. Gaza toward Israel hits a Palestinian home nr. Bayt Hanun, nr. the n. Gaza border. In the West Bank, the IDF kills 2 Islamic Jihad mbrs. in an exchange of fire nr. Jenin; sends troops into Kafr Dan nr. Jenin to patrol, firing on stone-throwing youths who confront them, killing a 14-yr.-old Palestinian boy, prompting an exchange of gunfire with Palestinian resistance mbrs. that leaves 1 armed Palestinian dead, 7 Palestinians wounded; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus (firing on residential areas, wounding a Palestinian woman in her home), in Qalqilya, nr. Hebron; fires rubber-coated steel bullets, percussion grenades, tear gas at Palestinian, Israeli, international activists taking part in the weekly nonviolent demonstration against the separation wall in Bil`in, injuring 5. (BBC 8/17; NYT 8/19; OCHA 8/22; PCHR 8/23)

18 AUGUST

IDF troops on the central Gaza border fire on 3 unarmed Palestinians attempting to sneak into Israel to find work, killing 1 Palestinian, arresting 2. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches nr. Bethlehem; patrols in Nablus and neighboring `Ayn Bayt al-Ma’a refugee camp (r.c.). A 13-yr.-old Palestinian boy is injured by unexploded IDF ordnance (UXO) nr. Tubas. (OCHA 8/22; PCHR 8/23)

19 AUGUST

In Gaza, the IDF sends tanks, bulldozers into al-Bureij r.c. to level land, sparking an exchange of gunfire that leaves 1 Palestinian bystander wounded. Israel authorizes the Nahal Oz fuel pipeline to reopen, but the European Union (EU), which underwrites PA fuel imports, suspends payments for fuel supplies until it receives assurances that the Hamas government in Gaza will not receive tax revenues fr. the sale of electricity produced with the fuel imports. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches nr. Jenin and in Bethlehem, Qalqilya, Tulkarm; patrols in al-Yamun nr. Jenin. In Gaza, unidentified gunmen raid Fatah’s Dayr al-Balah offices, confiscating computers, documents. (NYT 8/19; OCHA 8/22; PCHR 8/23)

20 AUGUST

The IDF shells a car driving nr. al-Bureij r.c., assassinating 2 ESF officers (Muhammad Abu `Arab, Ali Baroud) and 4 Hamas mbrs. (Ismail Abu Abda, `Abid Abu Hilu, Ahmad al-Qrainawi, Muhammad al-Qrainawi), wounding 1 bystander; sends troops into Abasan nr. Khan Yunis, bulldozing land, firing on residential areas, wounding 1 Palestinian. An Islamic Jihad mbr. is injured when explosives he is handling detonate prematurely. Gaza’s sole power plant, which produces 25% of Gaza’s electricity, shuts down after depleting its fuel reserves (see 8/19; 70% of Gaza’s electricity is provided by Israel, 5% by Egypt). In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus and nr. Bethlehem, Hebron, Jenin, Ramallah, Tulkarm; fires on stone-throwing Palestinian youths outside `Ayn Bayt al-Ma’a r.c., wounding 2; later patrols in `Ayn Bayt al-Ma’a, exchanging fire with local gunmen, killing 1 armed Palestinian. (HA, NYT 8/21; OCHA, WP 8/22; PCHR 8/23)

21 AUGUST

In Gaza, the IDF makes an air strike on a group of armed Islamic Jihad mbrs. nr. the n. Gaza border fence, killing 3 Islamic Jihad mbrs.; makes an air strike on 2 Hamas mbrs. nr. the border barrier e. of Gaza City, killing 1 Hamas mbr., wounding 1; makes an air strike on an Islamic Jihad training site nr. Rafah, wounding 1 Islamic Jihad mbr.; fires a tank shell at 2 Palestinian children (ages 9, 12) nr. a site previously used to launch rockets, killing them (the IDF claims that militants often use children to retrieve rocket launchers, so they were a viable target). Palestinians fire 3 rockets fr. Gaza into Israel, causing light damage but no injuries. In Bayt Hanun, a Palestinian is injured when explosives he is handling detonate prematurely. Hamas takes over management of the Rafah Labor Association, formerly headed by Fatah. (OCHA,WP 8/22; PCHR 8/23)

22 AUGUST

Fuel imports to Gaza resume for the 1st time since 8/15 after the EU receives assurances that Hamas will not benefit fr. electricity sales. The IDF bulldozes Palestinian land along the Gaza border e. of Jabaliya r.c. to improve lines of sight. The Israeli navy fires on Palestinian fishing boats off the Rafah coast, damaging 10 boats, arresting 8 fishermen, forcing others to return to shore. In the West Bank, the IDF demolishes a Palestinian home nr. Salfit; patrols in Jenin town and r.c.; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Hebron, in `Ayn Bayt al-Ma’a r.c. (3 IDF soldiers are wounded in an exchange of fire with armed Palestinians). (PCHR 8/23; OCHA 8/29; PCHR 8/30)

23 AUGUST

Overnight, the IDF makes an incursion into Khuza’a nr. Khan Yunis, storming houses, occupying homes and a school as observation posts, clashing with and calling in air strikes on armed Palestinians who confront them (wounding at least 6 Palestinians, including 2 civilians), bulldozing 6 dunams (d.; 4 d. = 1 acre) of Palestinian land, detaining 5 Palestinians (4 of whom are released later in the day). During the day, IDF troops on the Gaza border fire a surface-to-surface missile into Gaza at a group of Hamas mbrs., killing 1 Hamas mbr., wounding 1. Islamic Jihad mbrs. fire an RPG at an IDF patrol on the Gaza border nr. Dayr al-Balah, causing no damage or injuries. Nr. Gaza City, 1 Hamas mbr. is killed, another wounded when a roadside bomb they are planting explodes prematurely. In 2 separate incidents in Hebron, Jewish settlers attack, vandalize Palestinian homes. In Wadi al-Juz in East Jerusalem, the IDF raids a home where some 25 Israeli Palestinian religious figures, including Islamic Movement head Shaykh Raed Salah, are having a dinner, ordering the group to disband because they are holding an “illegal meeting”; when the group refuses, the IDF fires percussion grenades into the home, injuring 4. (REU 8/23; OCHA 8/29; PCHR 8/30)

24 AUGUST

In Gaza, the IDF fatally shoots 2 armed Palestinians on the border nr. Jabaliya; sends troops into Shuka nr. Rafah to bulldoze 6 d. of agricultural land nr. the Gaza airport; bulldozes Palestinian land along the border fence n. of Bayt Lahiya. In the West Bank, the IDF sends undercover units into Sa`ida nr. Tulkarm to raid 2 Palestinian homes, mortally shooting Islamic Jihad cmdr. Tariq Milhem in an exchange of fire, allowing him to bleed to death over 2 hrs., also fatally shooting his 11-yr.-old brother, wounding 2 other family mbrs. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in, fires on residential areas of Balata r.c. nr. Nablus, wounding 1 Palestinian woman; conducts house searches in `Ayn Bayt al-Ma’a; fires rubber-coated steel bullets, percussion grenades, tear gas at Palestinian, Israeli, international activists taking part in the weekly nonviolent demonstration against the separation wall in Bil`in, injuring 2. Jewish settlers fire on a Palestinian wedding party nr. Nablus, wounding 2 Palestinians. Jewish settlers in Hebron assault an 11-yr.-old Palestinian boy riding his bike, breaking his arm. Meanwhile, 500 Fatah mbrs. hold an unauthorized protest against the Hamas-led government outside the main security headquarters in Gaza City, throwing stones at ESF officers guarding the building, who fire into the air and beat back the demonstrators, injuring 15. Separately in Gaza City, ESF officers raid a wedding to halt celebratory gunfire, scuffling with guests, beating and injuring 1 Palestinian. (WT 8/25; OCHA 8/29; PCHR 8/30

Under a temporary cease-fire brokered by the Palestinian Clerics Association btwn. the Lebanese army and Fatah al-Islam (FI) militants who have been fighting in and around the Palestinian refugee camp of Nahr al-Barid nr. Tripoli since 5/07 (see Quarterly Update), army soldiers escort the remaining families of FI mbrs. (22 women, 41 children) out of the r.c. in anticipation of a final assault. The army estimates that 70 FI mbrs. are left in the camp and are refusing to surrender. (NYT, WT 8/25)

25 AUGUST

In Gaza, 2 armed Palestinians representing the Fatah-linked al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade (AMB) and the Popular Resistance Comms. (PRCs; an umbrella group including mbrs. of all factions) infiltrate the Israeli border, open fire with automatic weapons at the IDF post at Erez crossing, lightly wounding 2 soldiers before being shot dead. The IDF directs heavy machine gun fire at Palestinian homes in Shuka, makes several air strikes on the area during the day, wounding 1 Palestinian. Hamas mbrs. detonate a roadside bomb under an IDF vehicle patrolling the Gaza border nr. Shuka, causing no injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF sends undercover units into Jenin in cars with Palestinian license plates, ambushing and assassinating Islamic Jihad mbrs. Ala’ Sorour and Mustafa Atiq, wounding 3 other Islamic Jihad mbrs.; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Jenin town and r.c., nr. Hebron. Jewish settlers fr. Kiryat Arba in Hebron attack a Palestinian home in an area previously targeted by settlers for confiscation. The IDF forcibly removes some 100 Jewish settlers who reoccupied the vacant Homesh settlement site earlier in the day. (IFM, WT 8/26; OCHA 8/29; PCHR 8/30)

26 AUGUST

In Gaza, the IDF makes an air strike on a suspected rocket-launching site nr. Bayt Hanun, causing no injuries. The UNRWA appeals to Israel to allow 5 truckloads of paper into Gaza so that textbooks may be printed for students, who resume classes on 9/1, arguing that the paper constitutes humanitarian aid; Israel refuses, saying the paper might be used to print books “with Hamas ideology . . . or for other propagandist endeavors.” UNRWA also argues that Israel should resume imports of construction materials to Gaza for homes, schools, other infrastructure projects, the deterioration of which constitutes a public health concern. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches in Nablus and neighboring Askar r.c. A Jewish settler in Hebron injures a Palestinian woman in a deliberate hit-and-run incident. The Palestinian Union of Medical Professions in Gaza announces a work slowdown, with mbrs. working only btwn. 8:00 A.M. and 11:00 A.M., to protest the Hamas acting government’s replacement of senior health officials at several clinics and hospitals (see Quarterly Update in JPS 145). (UNIS 8/27; OCHA 8/29; PCHR 8/30; OCHA 9/13)

Clashes with FI in Nahr al-Barid r.c. leave 3 Lebanese soldiers dead. (WP 8/27)

27 AUGUST

IDF troops stationed on the Gaza border fatally shoot a Palestinian shepherd who strays nr. the border fence nr. Juhur al-Dik; troops conduct bulldozing operations in the area. The IDF makes an air strike on a suspected rocket-launching site nr. Bayt Hanun, causing no injuries. The Israeli navy fires on Palestinian fishing vessels off the Bayt Lahiya coast, forcing them to return to shore. In the West Bank, the IDF arrests Palestinian Awad Abu Suway, head of a Bethlehem group that organizes local nonviolent protests against the separation wall, and his 65-yr.-old father; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Jenin town and r.c. and in Hebron, Nablus, and neighboring Balata r.c. PA police rescue an IDF soldier who mistakenly drives into Jenin and is surrounded by an angry mob; police safely turn over the soldier to the IDF, but the crowd burns his vehicle; Israel praises the PA police, saying their actions are a sign of PA Pres. Mahmud Abbas’s growing authority. A Palestinian civilian injured in an 8/14 IDF air strike on Khan Yunis dies. (AP 8/27; WP 8/28; OCHA 8/29; PCHR 8/30)

28 AUGUST

IDF troops on the Gaza border, shoot, wound, detain, and transport to Israel a mentally handicapped Palestinian who strays nr. the border barrier nr. Jabaliya. The IDF makes an incursion into Abu Safiyya nr. Bayt Hanun, searching homes, arresting 12 Palestinians. Palestinians fire a rocket fr. Gaza into Israel, hitting a home, injuring 1 Israeli. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in Qalqilya, firing on stone-throwing Palestinians who confront them, injuring 14 (including 9 children). Meanwhile, armed clashes erupt in Khan Yunis when ESF officers attempt to arrest a wanted Fatah mbr., leaving 17 Palestinians injured. Hamas closes 4 private medical clinics in Gaza that were adhering to a Fatah work slowdown. In Nablus, suspected Fatah mbrs. kidnap, beat, release a Hamas mbr. (WT 8/29; IFM 8/29; OCHA 8/29; PCHR 8/30)

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