GAZA, August 15, 2018 (Reuters) - Israel allowed commercial goods back into the Gaza Strip on Wednesday, in a sign of an easing of tensions as neighbouring Egypt pursued a long-term ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, the Palestinian faction that rules the enclave.
At Israel’s Kerem Shalom commercial crossing with Gaza, consignments of fruits and vegetables, fuel and construction material moved into the territory of two million people on Wednesday morning, a Reuters camera crew said.
Israel announced on Tuesday it would lift the commercial goods ban it imposed on July 9 in response to the launching by Palestinians of incendiary balloons across the frontier.
Israel also expanded Gaza’s fishing zone, in waters under Israeli naval blockade, from 3 to 9 nautical miles off the southern coast and to six nautical miles in the north, an area closer to the Israeli border, the head of Gaza’s fishermen’s union said.
Prior restrictions on the import of commercial goods that Israel says could also be used for military purposes remained in effect, a Palestinian border official said. He said they included balloons and tires.
Egypt and the United Nations have been trying to broker a comprehensive truce to prevent more fighting and to ease the deep economic hardship in Gaza.
Hamas officials said Palestinian factions were in Cairo to discuss terms for a ceasefire with Israel, whose security cabinet was due to consider the issue later in the day.
Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett, who heads the ultranationalist Jewish Home party in the governing coalition, put Netanyahu on notice that his faction would vote against an agreement with Hamas.
GAZA, August 11, 2018 (News Wires) - A 40-year-old Palestinian hit by Israeli fire during protests on the Gaza border died of his wounds on Saturday, taking the previous day's death toll to three, the territory's health ministry said.
He was among at least 131 Palestinians wounded by Israeli bullets during Friday's protests.
The health ministry identified the dead man as Ahmed Abu Lulu and said he was shot in a section of the border east of the southern city of Rafah where two other Palestinians were also killed.
The ministry identified them as Ali al-Alul, 55, and volunteer medic Abdullah al-Qatati, 21.
GAZA CITY, August 11, 2018 (MENA) - A Palestinian man died on Saturday of wounds he sustained during Gaza border protests on Friday, WAFA news agency quoted medical sources as saying.
Ahmed Jamal Abu Loly, 40, succumbed to his wounds after he was shot and critically injured by Israeli forces while participating in the Great March of Return protests to the east of the city of Rafah, south of the Gaza Strip.
This brings the total number of the Palestinians killed during Friday's protests to three.
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, August 9, 2018 (News Wires) — The United Nations’ Mideast envoy is expressing his concern about the latest escalation of hostilities in the Gaza Strip between Israel and Hamas.
Nickolay Mladenov, the UN special envoy who is involved in Egyptian efforts to broker a truce, said in a statement on Thursday that he’s “deeply alarmed” by “multiple rockets fired towards communities in southern Israel” the day before.
Mladenov’s statement came amid the latest surge in violence this week, in which Hamas fired over 150 rockets at Israel which in return, out over 140 airstrikes in the Gaza Strip.
Mladenov says that for months, he has warned the “humanitarian, security and political crisis in Gaza risks a devastating conflict that nobody wants.”
He added that “if the current escalation however is not contained immediately, the situation can rapidly deteriorate with devastating consequences for all people.”
Israeli warplanes hit struck dozens of targets in the Gaza Strip early this morning and three people were reported killed there, while Palestinian gunmen from the territory fired scores of rockets into Israel in a fierce burst of violence overnight.
The flare-up comes as Egypt is trying to broker a long-term cease-fire between the two sides.
Ramallah, August 9, 20l8 (MENA) Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas held intensive international contacts at all levels with the aim to end the Israeli escalation against the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.
Abbas warned against any further deterioration in the situation, saying that Israel may drag the region into a greater extent of destruction and instability.
Meanwhile, Secretary of the executive committee of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) Saeb Erekat on Thursday called on countries to reconsider their bilateral relations with Israel.
The PLO official asserted that as long as Israel continues violating the international law and legitimacy, it should never be regarded as a partner of any country that respects international law and human rights.
Erekat made the remarks in the wake of a series of Israeli air strikes launched since Wednesday on the Gaza Strip, during which three Palestinians, including a pregnant woman and her toddler, were killed.
Erekat urged for an immediate intervention by all parties concerned to implement a truce, end the Palestinian division and reconcile the Palestinian factions, pointing out that this is the only way to protect the Palestinian people and end the occupation.
Moreover, Erekat sent an official message to all countries through their diplomatic representatives in Palestine after the new "Jewish Nation-State bill" that has been recently approved by the Knesset.
The message explained the goals of the racist legislation which aims to legitimise Israel's political scheme and adopt two different regimes inside a single State.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas held intensive international contacts at all levels with the aim to end the Israeli escalation against the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.
Abbas warned that any further deterioration Israeli may drag the region into a greater extent of destruction and instability.
RAMALLAH, August 9, 2018 (MENA) - Three Palestinians were killed early Thursday and 12 others injured in Israeli shelling of various parts of the Gaza Strip.
Gaza's Health Ministry identified those killed in the airstrikes as 30-year-old Ali Ghandour, 23-year-old Enas Khamash and her one-year-old daughter Bayan.
The ministry said two of those injured are in a serious condition.
Meanwhile, The Palestinian Prisoners’ Club said that Israeli soldiers arrested late Wednesday and early Thursday seven Palestinians in several parts of the occupied West Bank.
In a press release, the club said Israeli forces detained four Palestinians in Qaffin town in Tulkarm and one from each of Qalqilia, Bethlehem and Hebron.
Meanwhile, the Israeli army carried out military exercises near two Palestinian villages; Faqoua and Galboun, east of the West Bank city of Jenin, according to Palestinian sources.
The army used live ammunition in the drills.