Protection of Civilians Report | 13-26 April 2021

Latest development

On 29 April, Israel removed the restrictions on the permissible fishing zone off the Gaza coast that had been imposed since 25 April.

Highlights from the reporting period

  • At least 166 Palestinians and 20 Israelis, including civilians and police officers, were injured in multiple violent incidents across Jerusalem city. In daily clashes, Palestinians threw stones and bottles, and Israeli forces shot tear gas canisters, sound grenades and rubber bullets. Violence was particularly intense on 22 April, after Israeli civilians marched to Damascus Gate of the Old City, chanting anti-Arab slogans and clashed with Palestinians before both groups were dispersed by Israeli forces. Scattered attacks by Palestinians and by Israeli civilians included physical assault, stone-throwing and setting cars on fire. Events extended to most West Bank governorates and to the Gazan side of the perimeter fence with Israel (see below). In Jerusalem, 208  Palestinians, including seven children, were arrested, including for reported attacks on Israelis. The events started on the first night of Ramadan, 13 April, after the Israeli authorities installed metal barriers outside the Damascus Gate, blocking access to a public area, where Palestinians traditionally gather during the month in the evenings after breaking the fast. Calm was restored on 25 April, when the Israeli authorities removed the metal barriers.
  • In the Gaza Strip, Palestinian armed groups fired an estimated 45 rockets into Israel, reportedly in the context of the Jerusalem events. Israeli air strikes and shelling across Gaza followed, causing partial damage to a farm. Israeli sources indicated that rockets were fired three nights in a row between 23 and 25 April, indirectly causing injury to four people, including a pregnant woman, who fell down while running for shelter. Rocket fire reportedly damaged a number of buildings and vehicles. On 25 April, the Israeli authorities reduced the permissible fishing zone off the southern Gaza coast from 15 to nine nautical miles, and between 26 and 28 April, they prohibited sailing at any distance from the shore.
  • Hundreds of Palestinians in Gaza participated in night protests near the Israeli perimeter fence, also in the context of the Jerusalem events. Protesters burned tires, threw stones and approached the fence and Israeli forces responded with warning fire, with no casualties reported. According to Israeli sources, incendiary balloons were also launched from Gaza towards Israel, causing no damage.
  • A total of 31 Palestinians were injured by Israeli forces across the West Bank, beyond East Jerusalem. Twenty-four of them, including a three-year-old boy, were wounded in demonstrations that took place in solidarity with Jerusalem protests in the cities of Tulkarm, Bethlehem and Al Bireh, and the villages of Deir Sharaf and Al Lubban ash Sharqiya. Four people were wounded in a weekly protest against settlement activities the village of Kafr Qaddum (Qalqiliya); two in a search-and-arrest operation in Aqbet Jaber refugee camp; and one in clashes with Israeli settlers accompanied by Israeli forces in At Tuwani (Hebron). Of the injuries, sixteen were treated for tear gas inhalation, six were hit by rubber bullets, five were shot with live ammunition, and four were physically assaulted. 
  • Israeli forces carried out 66 search-and-arrest operations and arrested 43 Palestinians across the West Bank. Of those, 14 operations were in Hebron and 12 in Nablus governorates. 
  • In Gaza, on at least 18 occasions, Israeli forces opened warning fire near the perimeter fence or off the coast, reportedly to enforce access restrictions. On another three occasions, Israeli forces conducted land levelling near the fence. No injuries were reported.
  • The Israeli authorities confiscated two structures in the community of Susiya (Hebron) for lack of building permits, undermining the livelihood of a family of eight. The decline in demolitions and confiscations witnessed in recent weeks is consistent with the practice in previous years during the month of Ramadan (with the exception of 2020, where about 40 structures were targeted). Israeli forces bulldozed 120 Palestinian-owned olive and almond trees as well as terraces in Al Walaja (Bethlehem), on the grounds that the area had been declared ‘state land’.
  • Beyond the incidents in Jerusalem city, perpetrators known or believed to be Israeli settlers injured a Palestinian and damaged dozens of Palestinian-owned trees across the West Bank. The injured man was working his land when he was attacked, reportedly by a settlement security guard, near Al Khader village (Bethlehem). Another man was physically assaulted but not injured in Huwwara (Nablus). About 90 olive trees were damaged in four locations, over 100 dunums of seasonal crops were vandalized in three locations, and damage was reportedly caused to a house under construction, fences, retaining walls, an agricultural gate, water-related structures, and cars. In Wadi as Seeq (Ramallah), Israeli settlers attacked Palestinian herders, resulting in the death of two sheep. In Mughayir al Abeed, settlers stoned Palestinians, forcing them out of the area, installed two tents and occupied a cave for seven days, before Israeli forces dismantled the tents and forced them out.
  • Also, in addition to the incidents in Jerusalem city perpetrators, known or believed to be Palestinians, caused damage to eight Israeli-plated vehicles by stones across the West Bank. The incidents were recorded by Israeli sources.

This report reflects information available as of the time of publication. The most updated data and more breakdowns are available at ochaopt.org/data.

0 Palestinians killed by Israeli forces
2021
    4
2020
    24 | 6
2019
27 108
  • West Bank
  • Gaza Strip
197 Palestinian injuries by Israeli forces in the oPt
2021
    606
2020
    2,559 | 56
2019
3,523 11,845
  • West Bank
  • Gaza Strip
0 Israelis killed by Palestinians
2021
   
2020
    2 | 1
2019
4 5
  • oPt
  • Israel
24 Israelis injured by Palestinians
2021
    53
2020
93 18
2019
63 206
  • oPt
  • Israel
2 Palestinian-owned structures demolished
2021
      269 | 44 | 1
2020
664 175 8
2019
393 203 25
  • Area C
  • East Jerusalem
  • Areas A & B
0 Palestinians displaced due to demolitions
2021
395 63 11
2020
572 391 33
2019
507 347 60
  • Area C
  • East Jerusalem
  • Areas A & B
21 Attacks by Israeli settlers
against Palestinians in the West Bank
2021
    97|30
2020
270 83
2019
259 76
  • Resulting in property damage
  • Resulting in casualties
66 Israeli military search and arrest operations in the West Bank
2021
    1,269
2020
3,634 0
2019
4,086 0
    3 Israeli military incursions into Gaza
    2021
        15
    2020
    49 0
    2019
    61 0
      4,293 crossings of people through Rafah
      2021
          18,381|22,421
      2020
          26,041 | 25,757
      2019
      64,442 79,322
      • Into Gaza
      • Out of Gaza
      3,497 truckloads entering Gaza
      2021
          11,902|20,831
      2020
      45,359 60,306
      2019
      39,931 52,178
      • Construction materials
      • Others
      157 truckloads leaving Gaza
      2021
      1,224 601
      2020
      2,153 1,111
      2019
      2,269 626
      • To the West Bank
      • Elsewhere