The Israeli Palestinian Conflict

The Palestinian Perspective on the IDF Operation in Rafah

IDF forces initiated a military operation in limited areas in east Rafah, targeting Hamas terrorist facilities. The forces took control of the Gazan side of the Rafah Crossing, which is situated in the east of the city. Prior to the operation, the IDF began evacuating the residents of east Rafah to an expanded humanitarian zone in Mawasi Khan Yunis in the central Gaza Strip. UNRWA and Palestinian media outlets reported tens of thousands of residents evacuated from the area, although Hamas claimed lower numbers. The IDF takeover and closing of the Rafah Crossing provoked reactions from Palestinian figures and international aid organizations. The Arab world also condemned the IDF's action and expressed concern regarding the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip. Hezbollah, the Houthis and the pro-Iranian militias in Iraq threatened that if Israel entered Rafah they would escalate their attacks, and have in fact carried out their threats. Egypt prepared for the operation and raised the alert level of its forces in the border area, out of concern that Gazans would enter its territory. It is currently unclear how long the IDF operation in east Rafah will last and if it will expand to other areas. Meanwhile, the efforts of the United States, Qatar and Egypt to reach a deal to release the hostages continue. Contrary to the statements of senior Hamas members before the operation, its representatives continued the negotiations for a ceasefire and a hostage deal even as IDF forces operate in Rafah.
Read more...

Spotlight on the Israel-Palestinian Conflict (April 16 – May 7, 2024)

On the night of May 6, 2024, guided by intelligence, IDF forces began a targeted activity in limited areas of eastern Rafah, achieving operational control on the Gaza side of the Rafah Crossing. Meanwhile, IDF forces continued attacking terrorist targets and rocket launchers in the central Gaza Strip and Beit Hanoun (northern Gaza Strip). Terrorists in the Gaza Strip continued firing rockets at the cities, towns and villages surrounding Gaza and in southern Israel. Four IDF soldiers were killed in a Hamas rocket and mortar shell attack on a concentration of forces in the Kerem Shalom area. In response, IDF forces attacked rocket launch centers in Rafah and closed the Kerem Shalom Crossing. After a series of meetings and the submission of proposals and counter-proposals, Isma'il Haniyeh, head of Hamas' political bureau, informed that Hamas agreed to the outline proposed for a ceasefire with Israel as part of the negotiations for the release of the hostages. The delivery of humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip continues, especially to the north. During the past three weeks Palestinian terrorists carried out 11 attacks of various types. The Israeli security forces continued their counterterrorism activities. Mahmoud Abbas continued his efforts with international parties to end the war in the Gaza Strip and prevent the IDF's operation in Rafah. A proposed resolution will be voted on by the General Assembly on May 10, 2024. Meanwhile, with Chinese support, an attempt was made to renew the Palestinian internal reconciliation, despite low expectations for its success.
Read more...

Spotlight on the Israel-Palestinian Conflict (April 9-16, 2024)

IDF forces continued their activities in the Gaza Strip mainly in the central Gaza Strip and in the east of Gaza City. Three sons and four grandsons of Isma'il Haniyeh were killed in an airstrike; several Hamas senior terrorist operatives were killed in Jebalya and Rafah. Rocket fire from the Gaza Strip continued to attack Israeli Air Force aircraft attacked the launching areas. Hamas rejected the last offer made in Cairo and continues to insist Israel meet its previous conditions. The IDF spokesperson announced Israel's intention to increase the number of trucks entering the Gaza Strip with humanitarian. Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) justified the Iranian attack, calling it Iran's "natural right. This past week there were two terrorist attacks. A 14 year-old Israeli boy was murdered near an outpost northeast of Ramallah. In response, Jewish settlers took revenge on Palestinian villages in the area. Mahmoud Abbas and Mohammad Mustafa, the new PA prime minister, continue "political" activity to end the war and introduce humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip.
Read more...

Spotlight on the Israel-Palestinian Conflict (April 2-9, 2024)

On April 7, 2024, IDF forces left the combat zone in Khan Yunis. Several rockets were launched at the cities, towns and villages surrounding the Gaza Strip. The Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) claimed responsibility for most of the attacks. The Palestinian media continued to follow and quote statements from the Israeli prime minister and government officials about a possible IDF activity in Rafah. Another round of talks was held in Cairo. Despite optimistic forecasts, Hamas stated that they were examining the proposal formulated during the talks, which they claimed did not meet their demands. The Palestinians continue to complain about the rate of humanitarian aid deliveries for the Gazans. This past week there were four terrorist attacks. The security forces exposed a terrorist squad planning to kill the Israeli minister of national security and attack national institutions. The Palestinian Authority (PA) security forces exposed a squad of ISIS terrorists planning to carry out attacks. The PA continues to press its suit for full membership in the UN, and the Security Council passed the request to the relevant committee. Muhammad Mustafa, prime minister of the new Palestinian government, held his first government meeting, as well as a round of meetings with regional leaders. It is possible that Mustafa and Hussein al-Sheikh, secretary of the PLO's Executive Committee, will pay a visit during the second half of April 2024.
Read more...

Organizing Aid Flotillas to the Gaza Strip and international arenas

Since the beginning of the Gaza Strip War, initiatives have been undertaken around the globe to organize boats and ships to bring aid to the Gaza Strip, leading to the establishment of the International Campaign to Save Gaza (ICSG), which was announced on November 23, 2023 during a conference held in Istanbul.. Recently the organization, behind which is the Freedom Flotilla Coalition (FFC), announced it would launch a ship from Libya to El Arish in the near future, and would launch another ship from Lebanon. Zaher Birawi, the ICSG chairman, announced the launch of a flotilla to "break the blockade of the Gaza Strip," most likely four ships from European countries. The Turkish IHH announced it had purchased several ships for the flotilla, which is expected to set sail in mid-April. In addition to sending humanitarian the flotilla organizers intend to turn them into anti-Israeli media campaigns. The arrival of aid ships, especially those with "activists" from around the world, could challenge the Israeli Navy. There is also a concern that aid arriving by sea will enter Gaza without Israeli supervision and the ships will be used to smuggle weapons. Should the ships also be carrying people with political influence and media personnel, they could complicate world public opinion for Israel. In the past Zaher Birawi stated that the main purpose of the flotillas was to raise awareness and discredit Israel, and to publicize the political and media campaigns accompanying the flotillas.
Read more...

Spotlight on the Israel-Palestinian Conflict (March 26 – April 2, 2024)

The activities of IDF forces in the Gaza Strip focused on three locations: Shifa Hospital in Gaza City, where the activity ended on April 1, 2024. Hundreds of Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) terrorist operatives were detained, including senior operatives, about 200 terrorists were killed and large quantities of weapons were seized. The central Gaza Strip, where the IDF attacked Hamas checkpoints and surveillance centers. The Khan Yunis area, where the forces operated in the al-Amal neighborhood and the village of al-Qarara. Talks for a hostage deal in Cairo continued without a breakthrough. The introduction of humanitarian aid into the Gaza Strip continues. Reportedly, Hamas has changed the nature of its combat and transitioned to limited attacks to preserve its forces and capabilities for "the day after There were three terrorist attacks. The Israeli security forces carried out counterterrorism activities in the Jenin and Tulkarm (Nur Shams) refugee camps.. The prayer on the third Friday of Ramadan on the Temple Mount passed with relative calm. According to reports, 125,000 worshipers came to pray . The new Palestinian government was sworn in. The Palestinian Authority called on the United States to change its policy towards the Palestinians.
Read more...