Israeli forces injure more than 500 Palestinians in wave of West Bank protests against Israel’s bombardment of Gaza.
Israel continued to bombard the Gaza Strip with air raids and artillery shells on Saturday, killing several children and women at a refugee camp.
As of early Saturday, at least 137 Palestinians, including 36 children, have been killed and 920 have been wounded since hostilities flared up on Monday.
The death toll is expected to rise, as another series of Israeli air assaults hit the Shati refugee camp in Gaza killing at least two women and seven children, while burying several others in the rubble. At least 15 others were injured, including an infant named Omar.
Another air raid also reportedly hit a house in Khan Yunis.
Thousands of Palestinian families have taken shelter in United Nations-run schools in northern Gaza to escape Israeli artillery fire. The UN has said it estimates approximately 10,000 Palestinians have left their homes in Gaza amid the Israeli offensive.
Despite international calls for an immediate halt of all hostilities, including from United Nations chief Antonio Guterres, Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pledged the offensive will continue “as needed to restore calm in the state of Israel”.
Hamas fired another barrage of rockets towards Israel, hitting the city of Ashdod early on Saturday.
At least eight people in Israel have also been killed, according to Reuters news agency. The Israeli army said hundreds of rockets have been fired from Gaza towards various locations in Israel and they have added reinforcements near the enclave’s eastern lands.
Meanwhile, violence is brewing between Israeli settlers and Palestinian citizens in the occupied West Bank, as well as in Israel.
At least 11 Palestinians have also been killed by Israeli security forces in the occupied West Bank.
Here are the latest updates:
New Israeli air strikes hit Gaza’s Khan Yunis
A video posted by Safa Press agency showed the latest Israeli air strikes in the southern part of Gaza.
According to the report, Israeli planes hit the al-Mawasi area west of Khan Yunis governorate.
📹 من قصف طائرات الاحتلال لمنطقة المواصي غرب محافظة خان يونس. pic.twitter.com/zoN8enZhuU
— وكالة صفا (@SafaPs) May 15, 2021
Injuries reported after Palestinians protest in the West Bank
Injuries have been reported in the West Bank following confrontations between Palestinian protesters and the occupying Israeli security forces.
A social media post by the Shehab new agency showed Palestinian protesters carrying their injured fellow marchers on Saturday morning in Nablus near the Hawara checkpoint.
Early on Saturday, thousands of worshippers coming from morning prayers in Nablus joined a large march in the city denouncing the Israeli occupation and the latest deadly bombings in Gaza that left at least 137 dead.
Separately, Israeli security forces also shot dead at least 11 Palestinians who have been protesting in the West Bank.
— وكالة شهاب للأنباء (@ShehabAgency) May 15, 2021
Shelling reported in Gaza’s Khan Yunis
Israeli artillery fire has reportedly hit some agricultural lands in the eastern part of Gaza’s Khan Yunis governorate.
Safa Press also reported on Saturday that there were also renewed shelling at the coastal area of Gaza.
There were no immediate reports on casualties or property damage.
Body of child recovered from Gaza ruins after Israeli bombardment
Members of a medical team in Gaza have recovered from under the rubble the body of another child following Israel’s bombardment of a residential property in the Palestinian territory’s al-Shati refugee camp.
The latest child fatality was the seventh confirmed minor killed in the attack, according to the New Press social media post. Two adult women were also killed.
Several people remain missing and are believed to be buried under the rubble of the bombing site.
Thousands gather in Nablus to denounce Israeli occupation
Thousands of Palestinians marched in the West Bank early on Saturday to denounce the continued Israeli occupation and the ongoing bombardment of Gaza.
The protesters were heading home after dawn prayers when they joined the march in the city of Nablus, according to a video posted on social media by Safa Press agency.
📹 متابعة صفا| مسيرة حاشدة في نابلس بعد صلاة الفجر العظيم نصرة لغزة ودعما للمقاومة pic.twitter.com/BaHCZr6G8H
— وكالة صفا (@SafaPs) May 15, 2021
Israeli air strike hits home in Shujayea
Safa Press agency is reporting in the last half hour that an Israeli air strike has hit and detroyed a house in the Shujayea neighbourhood of Gaza City.
There were no immediate reports on casualties.
The report said that the home of the Hassouna family located in eastern Gaza City was destroyed during the strike early on Saturday.
Shujayea was the site of a heavy Israeli bombardment in 2014 that killed several civilians. The incident was described as a “massacre”.
Drones target tower in Gaza City’s south
Israeli drones launched early on Saturday hit a structure in the southern part of Gaza City, the New Press site reported.
The report said that four missiles hit the al-Rawda Tower 2 located at Tal al-Hawa located south of Gaza City.
Hamas denounces Israeli ‘massacre’ at al-Shati refugee camp
The Palestinian group Hamas denounced the “massacre” at the al-Shati refugee camp in Gaza, following an Israeli air strike early on Saturday that left at least eight people dead and 15 others injured.
In a statement early on Saturday, Hamas spokesman Hazem Qassem said the attack “is a full-fledged war crime” committed by Israel against Palestinians.
“This crime reflects the inability of the occupation to confront the resistance in Gaza, the West Bank and Jerusalem,” Qassem said.
Earlier, Hamas fired a volley of rockets into Israeli territories in retaliation of the latest air strikes.
Infant survives Israeli air strike at Shati refugee camp in Gaza
An infant was among the survivors being treated for their injuries following the Israeli air strike early on Saturday at the Shati refugee camp in Gaza, according to Safa Press agency.
Al Jazeera’s Safwat al-Kahlout, who is reporting from Gaza, said at least 15 people were injured in the attack, although he did not give details on the extent of their injuries.
Kahlout earlier said that eight people were killed in the strike, including two women and six children.
At least nine other people are still believed to be trapped in the three-story building that collapsed following the Israeli strike.
📷 متابعة صفا| الناجي الوحيد من المجزرة الإسرائيلية باستهداف منزل على رؤوس قاطنيه في مخيم الشاطئ غرب مدينة غزة، ما أدى إلى استشهاد امرأتين وخمسة أطفال pic.twitter.com/YM2bquZYJE
— وكالة صفا (@SafaPs) May 15, 2021
Israeli strike hits another home in Khan Yunis
Another Israeli air strike early on Saturday hit a home in Khan Yunis neighbourhood of Gaza, according to Al Jazeera’s Safwat al-Kahlout, who is reporting from the Palestinian territory.
There were no immediate reports on casualties in the latest strike which hit Gaza in the last half hour.
Thousands of Palestinians have been fleeing their homes in the last few days following intense air strikes by Israel.
Some Gaza civilians said that there homes were targeted by Israel without any warning, resulting in the deaths of family members, many of them women and children.
US analyst: Prospect of peace under Netanyahu ‘not strong’
Richard Goodstein, a Democratic analyst and former advisor to former US President Bill Clinton, told Al Jazeera on Saturday that the prospects of peace between Israelis and Palestinians under Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s watch “are not strong”.
Goodstein, a foreign policy advisor to Clinton, said that if Netanyahu loses his post, given his legal and political troubles, US President Joseph Biden may be in a better position to negotiate a more lasting peace in the region.
He also said that Biden inherited a delicate position from Trump, and the new US president is responding to the current crisis “in a way that is nuanced”, while adding that the launching of rockets from Gaza “needs to come to an end”.
Rockets from Gaza hits building in Israel’s Ashdod
Rockets fired from Gaza early on Saturday hit a building in Israel’s Ashdod, according to the Jerusalem Post, adding that no one was reported injured in the incident, although a multi-story building sustained some damage.
Hamas earlier said that the latest barrage of rockets were in retaliation to the deadly Israeli air raid that killed several people, including children, at the Shati refugee camp in Gaza.
Israel’s public broadcaster, Kann, also reported that rockets have also been fired in Ashkelon and Shephelah in Israel.
Several dead, others believed trapped after Israeli bombing in western Gaza
At least seven Palestinians, including six children, are reported killed following another Israeli air assault on a home in the Shati refugee camp west of Gaza.
About 20 people are also believed to be trapped, or buried under the rubble, after Israel launched five missile strikes early on Saturday.
Safa Press agency posted on social media an image showing a pile of concrete debris as several men tried to dig through the rubble of the destroyed structure.
— وكالة صفا (@SafaPs) May 14, 2021
Gaza correspondent taking shelter
Al Jazeera’s Safwat al-Kahlout reporting from Gaza said in the last half hour, Israel has been “bombarding warning rockets” towards two homes “just a few steps from our office”.
“We are expecting anytime these two houses could be bombarded … causing a huge explosions and blasts in the area,” he added.
“We were advised and all my colleagues are taking shelter in the office.”
Senator Bernie Sanders calls for ‘evenhanded’ approach
Senator Bernie Sanders said in a New York Times guest essay that the US must consider the rights of Palestinians as Israel’s bombardment continues.
“We must change course and adopt an evenhanded approach, one that upholds and strengthens international law regarding the protection of civilians, as well as existing U.S. law holding that the provision of U.S. military aid must not enable human rights abuses”, he wrote.
"Israel has the absolute right to live in peace and security, but so do the Palestinians," Sen. Bernie Sanders writes in a guest essay. "We must recognize that Palestinian rights matter. Palestinian lives matter." https://t.co/YYfuPDh8uC
— The New York Times (@nytimes) May 14, 2021
“In this moment of crisis, the United States should be urging an immediate cease-fire. We should also understand that, while Hamas firing rockets into Israeli communities is absolutely unacceptable, today’s conflict did not begin with those rockets.”
West Bank: 11 Palestinian civilians killed
Israeli forces have killed a total of 11 Palestinians in the occupied West Bank during confrontations.
According to a statement by the Palestine Red Crescent Society, its medical teams dealt with 11 fatalities and 1,334 injured cases in different parts of the occupied West Bank.
Second Lebanese protester killed
A second Lebanese protester who was injured earlier from Israeli gunfire during a pro-Palestinian rally at the Lebanese-Israeli border has died of his wounds, a Lebanese security source and local media said.
The protester’s identity was not revealed.
The United Nations Interim Forces in Southern Lebanon (UNIFIL) said it has launched an investigation to determine the facts and circumstances surrounding the deaths.
Video: Israeli forces ‘brutally arrest’ Palestinian in Sheikh Jarrah
Mohammed el-Kurd, a writer from occupied East Jerusalem has posted videos on Twitter, showing developments unravelling in Sheikh Jarrah.
— mohammed el-kurd (@m7mdkurd) May 14, 2021
“Here they are again, using American taxpayer money to illegally break open the gates of a private home and brutally arrest a Palestinian,” el-Kurd wrote.
Gaza correspondent: No strikes in the past hour
Al Jazeera’s Safwat al-Kahlout reporting from Gaza said that in the past hour, Israeli forces have not carried any attacks on the enclave.
“This was something unusual in the last five days of escalation. We could hear some explosions, or some bombardment from the Israeli artillery that are deployed along the border line with Gaza in the north,” al-Kahlout said.
“You could also tell there was some explosion from the Israel Navy bombarding the coastline of the Gaza Strip. Apart from that, we can say, we had one hour of relative quiet.”
Activist: Netanyahu is calling the right wing to use their power
Responding to critique from Israelis that Hamas went too far and Israel had to respond, Issa Amro, a Palestinian activist based in Hebron, in the occupied West Bank told Al Jazeera that it wasn’t Hamas who planned to displace families from Sheikh Jarrah.
“Hamas didn’t attack Al Aqsa Mosque. They didn’t attack the worshippers. Thousands were injured inside the mosque,” Amro said.
“Israeli police use the massive, violent power against the Palestinian worshippers who were worshipping inside the walls.
“Netanyahu himself is really calling the right wing … the extremist elements … and he’s saying that they should use power against the Palestinians and telling the police do whatever you want,” Amro said.
Children in Gaza ‘already traumatised’: Save the Children
Jason Lee, director for Save the Children for the Palestinian Occupied Territories, told Al Jazeera from occupied East Jerusalem that many of the older children in Gaza are “already traumatised” having experienced three wars previously.
“This is why it’s so critical that we have to have immediate ceasefire and the cessation of hostilities. These children will carry lifelong injuries, mental health issues with physical disabilities as well,” Lee said.
“My team’s reporting that their own children have difficulty sleeping. They’re crying all the time. One of my own people said the behaviour of his daughter has changed so much that she now looks fearful every time she looks out the window that their family will be destroyed.”
Correspondent: Lebanese killed was a fighter with Hezbollah, group says
Hezbollah says 21 year old Mohammed Tahhan who was killed by Israeli gunfire along Lebanese-Israeli border was a fighter w/ the group.Palestinian &Lebanese youth protesting Israeli attacks against Palestinians.Some breached the fence, crossed into Israel, triggering the shooting
— Zeina Khodr (@ZeinakhodrAljaz) May 14, 2021
Al Jazeera’s Zeina Khodr reporting from Lebanon wrote on Twitter: “Hezbollah says 21-year-old Mohammed Tahhan who was killed by Israeli gunfire along Lebanese-Israeli border was a fighter with the group.”
UAE foreign minister calls for immediate steps to ceasefire
The United Arab Emirates’ foreign minister has expressed his country’s concern about the escalation of violence and called on all parties to take immediate steps to commit to a ceasefire and initiate a political dialogue, state news agency WAM has reported.
“We stand ready to support all efforts to this end,” the minister, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, said.
“It is the true mark of leadership in this moment of crisis to refrain from provocations and reprisals, and to instead work towards a de-escalation of tensions,” he added.
Israeli attacks on Gaza Strip kill 4 more Palestinians
Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip have killed four more Palestinians, taking the death toll to 126, according to Gaza’s Health Ministry.
The fatalities included 31 children and 20 women, while the number of injured rose to 920, according to a statement from the ministry.
Correspondent: Protests in Sheikh Jarrah ongoing
Al Jazeera’s Harry Fawcett reporting from Sheikh Jarrah in occupied East Jerusalem said the protests are still continuing.
“The security forces behind us have tried to keep the protesters inside their homes. Opposite a settler building on the other side of the road, there was a brief uptick in the skirmishes just now with a stun grenade,” Fawcett said.
“Here in Sheikh Jarrah there were clashes between Palestinian protesters and Jewish settlers. There’s a compound, a courtyard inside one of the Jewish-owned buildings; there were three people there, two of them at least with 10 hand guns, and one Palestinian person was shot and injured in that confrontation. The police then moved in and took the guns away from settlers.
“Elsewhere in the country, the situation remains very much on a knife’s edge. In the city of Lod, to the east of Tel Aviv where there have been a number of very violent incidents, there is a curfew in place.”
Israeli army: Three rockets fired towards Israel from Syria
Three rockets were fired towards Israel from Syria, the Israeli army said, adding that one landed inside Syria.
The launches came after Israeli fire towards Syria’s neighbour Lebanon killed a member of the Hezbollah group, an enemy of Israel that is present in southern Syria.
There was no immediate confirmation of a link between the events.
More demos expected on ‘Nakba Day’
Reporting from Ramallah, Al Jazeera’s Nida Ibrahim said: “We are [expecting more demonstrations] because Saturday is what is known here as Nakba Day.
“Also, there will be funerals of most of those who were killed in protests that took place in different cities in the occupied West Bank,” said Ibrahim.
She added that following the protests, 14 patients are “in critical condition, because of the excessive use of force by the Israeli forces. The Ministry of Health has issued a call for Palestinians to donate blood.
“We think that they are gearing up for a tense day on Saturday and they want to make sure that they have medical supplies and are equipped to deal with a high number of Palestinians who probably will get injured in confrontations,” Ibrahim said.
US sending new aid to Palestinians
The Biden administration notified Congress this week that it will send millions of dollars in US assistance to the Palestinians aimed at promoting peace with Israel.
As the conflict intensifies despite US calls for restraint, the administration notified Congress that it will provide $10m to Palestinian groups in the West Bank and Gaza to support exchange and reconciliation projects with Israelis. The recipients of the aid were not named.
The State Department said the money is part of more than $100m that the administration allocated to the Palestinians earlier this year, reversing a near-total cutoff in support under former President Donald Trump.
Several injured in Kafr Kanna protests
Medical sources told Al Jazeera Arabic about 20 Palestinians were wounded by Israeli forces in the town of Kafr Kanna, near the northern region of Galilee.
Confrontations between Palestinian youth and Israeli forces broke out in the northern town as residents protested the arrest of Sheikh Kamal al-Khatib, deputy leader of the Islamic Movement in Israel, from his home earlier on Friday.
Palestinian media said Israeli forces used tear gas and live ammunition to disperse the demonstrators.
الشبان الفلسطينيون يحاصرون سيارات شرطة وجيش الاحتلال في كفركنا في الداخل المحتل والتي تعتقل الشيخ كمال الخطيب وتمنعهم من التحرك pic.twitter.com/QvODneFGcz
— Tamer Almisshal تامر المسحال (@TamerMisshal) May 14, 2021
Renewed strikes on Gaza
Reporting from Gaza City, Al Jazeera’s Safwat Kahlout said fresh air raids are targeting the besieged coastal enclave, killing at least one person.
“They hit a house but it is still unclear who’s the target but at least we know that ambulances retrieved at least one body of a Palestinian that was killed.”
Kahlout said the attacks hit about 200 metres away from Al Jazeera’s Gaza City office.
‘Target is on residential buildings’: Gaza resident
Malak Mattar, a Palestinian artist based in Turkey who returned to Gaza City just before Ramadan told Al Jazeera she is not optimistic about the situation in the besieged enclave.
“I survived the war of 2008, 2012 and 2014. I could say and my family would say that what’s going on is much worse than the previous wars,” Mattar said.
“The bombings have not stopped. The target is on residential buildings that are in the city where I live. There have been other firings from gunboats… and also from the airplanes. My friends in the north (of Gaza) are forced to leave their homes. This reminds me of the Nakba in 1948. It’s a massacre and it makes me wonder if I will survive.
“I am not optimistic about the situation and I feel this is not going to end anywhere,” Mattar said.
UN: Hostilities forced 10,000 Palestinians to leave homes in Gaza
The UN has said it estimates approximately 10,000 Palestinians have left homes in Gaza “due to the ongoing hostilities” amid an Israeli offensive.
“They are sheltering in schools, mosques and other places during a global COVID-19 pandemic with limited access to water, food, hygiene, and health services,” the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said in a statement.
“Hospitals and access to water and sanitation services depend on electricity, the fuel for which will run out on Sunday,” it added.
The office said Israeli authorities and Palestinian groups must immediately allow the UN and its humanitarian partners to bring in fuel, food, and medical supplies and to deploy humanitarian personnel.
US ‘incredibly engaged’ in talks: White House
White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said at a press conference that the US has been “incredibly engaged” in talks “at the highest level” to de-escalate the situation.
“The president obviously has had his own conversations with Prime Minister Netanyahu. We’ve had dozens of high level calls and meetings with senior US officials with officials from Israel, the Palestinian Authority, our Arab partners and other stakeholders,” Psaki said.
“Our national security adviser has spoken with his counterpart in Israel, multiple times. We’ve had regular dialogue multiple times per day with Egyptian and Qatari officials, so we have been incredibly engaged at the highest level here from the federal government.”
Ramallah correspondent: Protests ongoing in West Bank
Al Jazeera’s Nida Ibrahim reporting from Ramallah at a Palestinian protest near the illegal Israel settlement of Beit El said protests in the West Bank are still ongoing, “including in and around Nablus, in the north.
“This is an area known for many settler attacks. Most of the attacks that happen are centred in that area as well as in Hebron. You can sense the frustration by Palestinians who are over there. A large number of those who were killed since early hours of Friday were in and around Nablus,” Ibrahim said.
She earlier reported that protests have been ongoing in “more than 200 locations in the occupied West Bank where Palestinians are fighting the Israeli army.
“That gives you an idea of how many Israeli military checkpoints are in place in the occupied West Bank.”
Gaza correspondent: Israeli fighter jets hit Interior Ministry
Al Jazeera’s Safwat al-Kahlout reporting from Gaza City said recently Israeli fighter jets fired seven heavy rockets on a compound. They hit the building of the Interior Ministry.
“According to the Ministry of Health, they said no casualties were reported because most of the security and police stations have been evacuated from the first day of Israeli escalation on Gaza,” al-Kahlout said.
US seeking to de-escalate Gaza conflict: White House
The Biden administration has reiterated that it is working towards de-escalation of the situation and towards a lasting peace in Gaza.
White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters the administration was focused on leveraging US relationships in the region to end the crisis between Israel and Hamas diplomatically.
Asked by the press if occupied East Jerusalem is on the table for a two-state solution Psaki said, “That is an issue that has long been and will always be for discussion between two parties in a negotiation about the path forward, so I don’t have an additional position on it.”
She added that humanitarian aid to Gaza and the West Bank will continue.
UN estimates about 10,000 Palestinians left homes in Gaza
The UN has said that approximately 10,000 Palestinians have left their homes in Gaza “due to ongoing hostilities”.
White House: ‘Israel has a right to self-defence’
Asked by a reporter at a news conference as to whether Israel is acting with sufficient restraint, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said, “At this point, again, as the president conveyed in his statement, Israel has a right to self-defence.
“I think it’s also important to remind people, Hamas is a terrorist organisation. Hamas does not represent the views, the families, the people who are suffering, all of the Palestinian people who are suffering as a result of this violence on, but there’s no justification for 1,500 rockets coming from Hamas into Israeli communities,” Psaki said.
Lebanon condemns ‘crime committed by Israeli forces’
Twenty-one-year-old Lebanese Mohammad Tahhan died of his wounds as a result of Israeli fire after he and others had tried to cross a security fence on the border with Israel, Lebanon’s Marjayoun Governmental Hospital told Al Jazeera.
President Michel Aoun’s office issued a statement condemning the “crime committed by Israeli forces”, and that Aoun had requested the foreign minister to inform the United Nations of the incident.
Israeli forces lobbed flares at Lebanese protesters trying to cross the southern border in another area, wounding three, Lebanese media reported.
Read more here.
10 Palestinians killed in West Bank: New toll
The number of Palestinians killed by Israeli fire during confrontations in the occupied West Bank has risen to 10, the Palestinian health ministry has said.
Five-hundred people were injured in different parts of the West Bank.
Violent protests erupted across the territory, with mainly young Palestinians hurling stones, Molotov cocktails and other projectiles at Israeli forces who have responded with tear gas, rubber bullet and live rounds, multiple sources said.
Read more here.
Gaza Health Ministry: System will collapse within a week or less
Dr Midhat Abbas, an official at Gaza’s Ministry of Health told Al Jazeera that if attacks on civilians and domestic zones continue, “certainly the health system will collapse.
“We have been living under siege for 15 years and [with] coronavirus for 1.5 years. Today is the fifth day of this aggression targeting a highly dense population.
“If those numbers continue like this in the coming few days, there will certainly be a collapse and there will be no space in the Palestinian ministry of health. We have 2,200 beds in all of the Gaza Strip. If we are having hundreds [of people] everyday, for sure within a week or less the hospitals will be full of patients and we won’t know what to do with the others,” Abbas said.
“They are still attacking health facilities. Yesterday they attacked a primary healthcare clinic … and partially two hospitals of which one was in Beit Hanoun.”
Lebanese youth killed by Israeli fire on border: Lebanese agency
A 21-year-old Lebanese man has died of his wounds as a result of Israeli fire after he and others had tried to cross a security fence on the border with Israel, Lebanon’s state news agency reported.
The agency said another youth had been injured by the fire, after Lebanese had gathered at the border area to stage a protest to show solidarity with Palestinians.
Earlier on Friday, the Israeli military said a number of people in Lebanon had damaged the border fence with Israel and set fire to a field in the area. Israeli tanks fired as a warning and the people turned and left, the military said.
Analyst: Netanyahu ‘has made the wrong bet’
Al Jazeera’s analyst Marwan Bishara said Netanyahu “has made the wrong bet and now he’s stuck because it’s very difficult for the Israeli military establishment – once its main airports have been threatened, its main population centres have been threatened – for him to stop.
“Clearly [Netanyahu] started something that he did not expect will spiral out of control as it is now. We see it within Israel itself in the so-called mixed cities of Palestinians and Jewish Israelis. We have seen it in the West Bank and Jerusalem. We’re seeing it, of course, in Gaza.
“I’ve been seeing images that, to be honest, I haven’t seen in 2014,” Bishara said, adding that public opinion in support of Palestinians is also growing in Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon.
“So I think, climbing down the ladder [for Israel] is going to be difficult. I think Netanyahu has overplayed his hand for his own political career and he is in a corner now. And he’s lashing out.”
Ramallah correspondent: Situation in West Bank ‘intensifying’
Al Jazeera’s Nida Ibrahim reporting from Ramallah at a Palestinian protest near the illegal Israel settlement of Beit El said that “the situation in the occupied West Bank is intensifying,” as these protests were sparked by the latest round of escalation.
“There are more than enough reasons to protest against Israeli occupation, the ongoing attacks by Israeli settlers against them that are often carried out with impunity, without indictment by the Israeli state,” Ibrahim said.
“There’s a lot of frustration by Palestinians, and they’re trying to take to the streets to vent, to talk about it, and to fight the Israeli occupation.”
EU leaders affirm support for Israel’s security
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has said she is “very concerned” about the escalating violence in Israel and Gaza.
“I condemn indiscriminate attacks by Hamas on Israel,” von der Leyen wrote on Twitter on Friday.
“Civilians on all sides must be protected. Violence must end now.”
Very concerned by the situation in Israel and Gaza.
I condemn indiscriminate attacks by Hamas on Israel.
Civilians on all sides must be protected.
Violence must end now.
— Ursula von der Leyen (@vonderleyen) May 14, 2021
Ramallah correspondent: Israeli army shooting live ammunition, skunk water
Al Jazeera’s Nida Ibrahim reporting from Ramallah at a Palestinian protest near the illegal Israel settlement of Beit El said that Palestinians have been throwing fireworks at the Israeli army, “probably in an attempt to fend off a drone that’s carried and loaded with tear gas bombs … flown by the Israeli army.
“It can go to locations probably the army cannot reach. So they lift the drone up, take it to where the crowds are, and then they drop the tear gas bombs,” Ibrahim said.
“As you can see the protesters are moving in ebs and flows. They go towards the Israeli army and then they are met with force – with the rubber-coated steel bullets, we are even hearing shots of live ammunition, as well as [use of] the skunk water.”
Ibrahim said three Palestinians were seen injured by Israeli fire, “one by live ammunition to the chest and two [protesters] by rubber-coated steel bullets which can cause severe damage”.
Gaza correspondent: Palestinians continue to flee to UN for shelter
Al Jazeera’s Safwat al-Kahlout reporting from Gaza City said that since last night, hundreds of people have continued to move from their homes across the borderline towards UN schools seeking shelter.
“We spoke to UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency) who said they are considering the humanitarian aid and what they can do for the people taking shelter in their schools,” al-Kahlout said.
Gaza correspondent: Israeli fighter jets hit bank near Al-Shifa hospital
Al Jazeera’s Safwat al-Kahlout reporting from Gaza City said that Israeli fighter jets have hit a local bank near Al-Shifa hospital.
“This is the third bank Israeli forces have attacked, claiming that these are part of Hamas financial infrastructure,” al-Kahlout said.
“Minutes before the Israeli strike, we saw Hamas’ Al Qassam Brigades fire a barrage of rockets towards Ashkelon.
“Earlier, we saw Israelis intensifying their fire in the central area of the Gaza Strip, specifically Al-Bureij refugee camp. They hit some residential houses. They said these houses belong to the fighting commanders of the military wing of Hamas but some of the residential houses attached to these houses have also been destroyed, and some civilians have been killed in this attack,” al-Kahlout said.
7 Palestinians killed in West Bank, 366 injured: New toll
Israeli forces have killed a total of seven Palestinians in the occupied West Bank.
According to a statement by the Palestine Red Crescent Society, its medical teams dealt with seven fatalities and 366 injured cases in different parts of the West Bank.
Following the Friday prayers, Palestinians demonstrated in about 24 locations across the West Bank.
Gaza correspondent: ‘People are living in fear’
Al Jazeera’s Sami Abu Salem reporting from Gaza City said the current situation is quieter than the evenings with occasional explosions set off in different parts of the city and some air raids conducted in various parts of the strip.
“Rescue teams are still busy in evacuating people from under the rubble. An hour ago they evacuated a family, a mother and her three kids … and the father was not there because he works with the rescue team,” Abu Salem said.
“The people are living in fear. I talked to some people, they said they experience the feeling [hoping] that the night will not come. When the night comes, they expect huge explosions,” he said, adding that families are leaving their homes near the border in Beit Hanoun to avoid artillery.
“They are afraid of the artillery because it is more spontaneous,” Abu Salem said.
France’s Macron speaks with Netanyahu, calls for return to peace
French President Emmanuel Macron has spoken with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu about the escalating conflict and called for a return to peace in the region.
In a statement, Macron condemned rocket attacks by Hamas and said Israel had the right to defend itself. He also expressed concern about the plight of the civilian population in Gaza, which is run by Hamas.
Six Palestinians killed in West Bank: New toll
Palestinian health officials say six Palestinians have been killed by Israeli army fire in the occupied West Bank.
The officials say five were killed in stone-throwing clashes with Israeli forces in several locations, and a sixth was killed during an attempt to stab an Israeli soldier.
4 Palestinians killed in West Bank: New toll
Two Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire in the occupied West Bank, bringing the day’s toll in the territory to four dead, the health ministry has said.
“Two citizens who arrived in serious condition at Salfit hospital after being wounded by Israeli army live fire to the chest and stomach … are dead,” the ministry said, after announcing two other deaths earlier in the day.
More than 100 people have been injured in the West Bank.
Israeli attacks kill three more Palestinians in Gaza
Israeli attacks on the blockaded Gaza Strip have killed three more Palestinians, taking the death toll to 122, according to Gaza’s Health Ministry.
The fatalities included 31 children and 20 women, while the number of injured rose to 900, according to a statement from the ministry.
Israel fires warning shots at Lebanese border
Israeli forces have fired warning shots towards a group of protesters who crossed from Lebanon as part of a rally against the Israeli campaign in Gaza.
The army said some two dozen Palestinian and Lebanese youths had gathered at the border gate separating the two countries for a protest. A few of those involved crossed the border into Israel.
The Israeli army said the group sabotaged the fence and set a fire in the area before returning to Lebanese territory.
Al-Manar TV station, owned by Lebanon’s Hezbollah group, said one Lebanese person was wounded in the incident. The report could not be immediately confirmed.
Jordanian police disperse protesters near border with West Bank
Jordanian riot police forcibly dispersed hundreds of pro-Palestinian protesters trying to reach a bridge that leads to the Israeli-occupied West Bank.
Witnesses said police fired tear gas and shot into the air to halt about 500 young demonstrators, who broke away from the scheduled route of a march near the borders organised to protest against Israeli attacks against Palestinians.
The demonstrators were within five kilometres (three miles) of the King Hussein Bridge, known in Israel as the Allenby Bridge, in the Jordan Valley opposite the Palestinian city of Jericho in the occupied West Bank.
Several thousand demonstrators also took to the streets after Friday prayers from the Grand Husseini Mosque in central Amman chanting anti-Israel slogans.
They called for the expulsion of the Israeli ambassador and scrapping of an unpopular peace treaty with Israel.
Palestinians in Gaza recount ‘ruthless’ horrors of Israeli raids
Hasan al-Attar stood quietly inside the morgue, staring at the bodies of his daughter, Lamya, and three other children belonging to the same family. Wearing his fireman’s vest, he bent over to kiss his daughter, before the refrigeration unit door was closed.
“Pray for her,” a colleague said, clasping his hand on Hasan’s shoulder.
Lamya and the children – the siblings Amir and Islam al-Attar – and Mohammed al-Attar were killed overnight on Friday in Beit Lahia, after an Israeli air raid bombed the house they were staying in.
Read here Palestinian families’ accounts of Israel’s relentless aerial bombardment.
Protests intensify in the occupied West Bank
One man was shot dead at a checkpoint in the town of Yabad near Jenin by Israeli security forces as Palestinians took to the streets across the occupied West Bank to protest against Israeli air raids in Gaza. Demonstrations were held in the cities of Nablus, Tulkarem, Jenin, Ramallah and Hebron.
Safa news agency also said that 20 people were injured in Jericho where Israeli police reportedly used live ammunition.
Israeli army shoots dead Palestinian north of Ramallah
Israeli forces shot dead a Palestinian man in the occupied West Bank, the fourth Palestinian killed since Monday.
There was no immediate information on the man’s identity. The Israeli army said he had attempted to stab a soldier before being “neutralised”.
“The assailant arrived in his vehicle to a military post adjacent to the community of Ofra, north of Ramallah, and accelerated” towards a soldier before the alleged attempted stabbing.
The Palestinian health ministry confirmed the man’s killing.
Turkey will not remain silent: Erdogan
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he is “furious” at Israeli air raids on the Gaza Strip and urged the UN Security Council to seek a peaceful resolution.
“We are both saddened and furious at the cruelty of the terrorist state of Israel against Palestinians,” Erdogan said during an online briefing.
“To stand against Israel’s aggression in Palestinian cities, Jerusalem is a duty of honour for humanity,” he added.
“Those who remain silent or openly back Israel’s bloodshed should know one day it will be their turn,” Erdogan continued, noting it is “imperative” for the Security Council to take steps to ensure peace in Jerusalem.
Turkey will not remain silent on “Israeli persecution in Palestine, even if the entire world ignores it,” Erdogan said.
Over 30 Palestinian schools, one Israeli damaged by air raids
Save the Children said that at least 31 schools attended by 24,000 children and a health facility in Gaza have been damaged by Israeli air raids.
The charity said all schooling had been suspended due to the violence.
“We keep telling my young daughter and son that the heavy shelling is celebrations, fireworks, what a joke! We resort to different ways to distract their attention from this awful atmosphere but all are in vain,” said Ibrahim Abu Sobeih, Save the Children’s Gaza field manager.
Israeli soldiers use live ammunition in occupied West Bank
Israeli soldiers have fired live ammunition against Palestinian protesters in the town of Budrus, west of Ramallah, the local Safa news agency reported.
Southern Israel ‘relatively quiet’
Al Jazeera’s Harry Fawcett, who has been reporting from southern Israel close to the Gaza Strip where Israel has amassed military tanks and troops, has provided the following update:
“It is relatively quiet right now compared to the previous days and to the extremely intense exchange of fire that took place in the night,” Fawcett said, referring to a barrage of rockets launched by Hamas into the city of Ashkelon around 3am local time (00:00 GMT).
The volley of rockets was followed by some confusion, Fawcett said, “deliberately or not” as reports suggested that Israel was considering a ground invasion. The report was later dismissed.
Israel refuses mediation initiative to reach truce: Report
An Egyptian delegation that met with Israeli officials to mediate the negotiation of a ceasefire did not reach any positive results, an Egyptian security source told DPA news agency.
Israel refused all initiatives of mediation to reach a truce, even a temporary one, with forces in the Gaza Strip, the source adds.
According to the source, Israel aims to destroy the military capabilities of Hamas and other factions in Gaza and target a number of Hamas senior officials wanted by Israel, before returning to negotiations on a ceasefire.
Israeli air raids destroy, damage scores of homes and schools: UN
Israeli air raids have destroyed or severely damaged more than 200 housing units in the Gaza Strip, while 24 schools have sustained damage, according to the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).
The agency said the escalation has affected access to water, sanitation, healthcare and the COVID-19 response.
It noted that the North Gaza Seawater Desalination Plant was still not operational affecting an estimated 250,000 people’s access to clean drinking water. Another 230,000 people from Gaza City and Khan Younis have limited access to piped water due to increasing power cuts and the damage to the networks, according to OCHA.
Israeli authorities have closed the Erez crossing in the north of the Gaza Strip since May 10, including for humanitarian workers, as well as the Kerem Shalom crossing in the south where goods and fuel pass through.
“Humanitarians continue to provide assistance on the ground but the current insecurity significantly restricts the delivery of essential services, including the ongoing COVID-19 response,” said Jens Laerke, OCHA’s spokesperson.
‘I haven’t slept for the past three days’
Maha Hussaini, a human rights activist in the Gaza Strip, spoke to Al Jazeera detailing her experience in the face of the ongoing Israeli bombardment.
“I haven’t slept for the past three days because the shelling intensifies mostly at night. We are sometimes able to buy food or order deliveries but most shops are closed because they are also being bombarded,” she said.
Hussaini said the northern part of the Gaza Strip had witnessed its “most violent” attack overnight, with fighter jets, tanks and artillery shelling “all bombing one area of 62 kilometres” (39 miles).
UPDATE | On the 2nd day of #Eid, after #Gaza witnessed a horrifying night in which no one slept a wink for hours of ongoing cruel bombing. The number of casualties increased from 83 to 119, including 31 children, and 19 women. 830 other civilians were injured.#GazaUnderAttackk pic.twitter.com/Xu59kagtPN
— We Are Not Numbers #Gaza (@WeAreNotNumbers) May 14, 2021
‘Violence must stop’: Macron
French President Emmanuel Macron “strongly” called for a ceasefire.
“The spiral of violence in the Middle East must stop. I strongly call for a ceasefire and for dialogue,” Macron said in a Twitter post that was also translated in Hebrew and Arabic.
“I call for calm and peace,” he added.
מערבולת האלימות חייבת להיפסק במזרח התיכון. אני קורא בתקיפות להפסקת אש ולדיאלוג. אני קורא לרגיעה ולשלום.
يجب ان تتوقف دوامة العنف في الشرق الأوسط. أناشد بقوة من اجل وقف إطلاق النار والحوار. أنادي للهدوء والسلام. https://t.co/FI2E0HNuWP
— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) May 14, 2021
Destruction in Gaza City
Images posted by the local Safa news agency show the level of destruction caused by Israeli air raids in Gaza.
📷 طائرات الاحتلال تقصف ورشة حدادة في حي الشجاعية شرقي مدينة غزة pic.twitter.com/KyAzYxAffS
— وكالة صفا (@SafaPs) May 14, 2021
Translation: Occupation warplanes bomb a blacksmith’s workshop in the Shejaiya neighborhood, east of Gaza City
📷 أضرار كبيرة في البنية التحتية والممتلكات جراء القصف الإسرائيلي العنيف شمال قطاع غزة الليلة الماضية pic.twitter.com/QiJoQCVuJV
— وكالة صفا (@SafaPs) May 14, 2021
Translation: The northern Gaza Strip incurred significant damage to its infrastructure and properties due to the violent Israeli bombardment last night.
ICC prosecutor warns against war crimes
The International Criminal Court’s top prosecutor Fatou Bensouda told Reuters news agency that individuals involved in the continuing conflict may be targeted by an investigation into alleged war crimes.
Bensouda said she would press ahead with her inquiry even without the cooperation of Israel, which accuses her office of anti-Semitic bias and rejected membership in the treaty-based court, objecting to its jurisdiction.
“These are events that we are looking at very seriously,” Bensouda said. “We are monitoring very closely and I remind that an investigation has opened and the evolution of these events could also be something we look at.”
Israel says it hit Gaza tunnels
The Israeli army said it destroyed several kilometres of underground tunnels in Gaza during a large-scale operation involving 160 aircraft.
The army said in a statement the aim of the operation was to severely damage the tunnels, an underground network they say Hamas use to move and launch attacks on Israel. It said more than 150 targets were hit.
‘Palestinians aren’t going anywhere’
US congresswoman Rashida Tlaib struggled to hold back tears in Congress as she questioned the US government’s “unconditional support” for Israel. Other Democrats gave their “unwavering” backing to Israel.
“Palestinians aren’t going anywhere.”
Representative @RashidaTlaib struggled to hold back tears in Congress as she questioned the US government’s “unconditional support” for Israel.
Other Democrats gave their “unwavering” backing to Israel. pic.twitter.com/dwjRi4HFzN
— Al Jazeera English (@AJEnglish) May 14, 2021
PODCAST: The Take – In Sheikh Jarrah, Palestinians confront a city’s future
What started out as protests against forced expulsions in a Palestinian neighbourhood has turned into an Israeli crackdown that has engulfed much of occupied East Jerusalem, including holy sites like Al-Aqsa Mosque.
But Sheikh Jarrah is just one neighbourhood, and displacements are unfolding across the occupied territories.
As the reverberations in Sheikh Jarrah spread beyond, how will it affect the future of Palestinians in Jerusalem?
Listen to Al Jazeera’s podcast The Take, with our host, Malika Bilal.
Hamas leader calls for demonstrations
Ismail Haniya has urged Palestinians across the occupied territories and in Israel to go out and demonstrate on Friday, the second day of Eid al-Fitr.
The Hamas chief called for the marches in protest of the latest Israeli police crackdown of Muslim worshippers at Al-Aqsa Mosque compound as well as the continuing bombardment of Gaza.
More Israeli shelling reported in Gaza towns
Local media are reporting more Israeli shelling and aerial bombardments in Gaza.
In the last few minutes, “violent” artillery shelling hit east of Deir al-Balah governorate just south of Gaza City.
Artillery fire also reportedly hit the homes of civilians east of Maghazi, also in Deir al-Balah area.
Israeli settlers attack Palestinian homes in West Bank
A video posted on social media by the Newpress publication showed several alleged Israeli settlers attacking Palestinian homes in the city of Hebron in the occupied West Bank early on Friday.
مستوطنون يهاجمون منازل الفلسطنيين الان في الخليل pic.twitter.com/cOY444jGLH
— Newpress | نيو برس (@NewpressPs) May 14, 2021
Translation: Settlers are now attacking Palestinian homes in Hebron
Israeli attack hits northern Gaza
Israeli air raids hit Zeitoun district early on Friday, with videos posted online showing dark smoke rising into the sky.
There was no immediate information on casualties.
— وكالة صفا (@SafaPs) May 14, 2021
For updates from Thursday, May 13, click here.