OPT: Protection of civilians weekly report, 16 - 22 Dec 2009

Situation Report
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West Bank

Military activities affecting civilians: no Palestinian casualties

For the first time since the beginning of 2009, this week, Israeli military and security activities throughout the West Bank ended with no Palestinian casualties. The weekly average of Palestinian injuries in these circumstances since the beginning of the year stands at 17. This week, Israeli forces conducted 99 search operations inside Palestinian villages, the majority of which took place in the northern West Bank (69), compared to a weekly average of around 100 operations since the beginning of the year.

Three of this week's search and arrest operations were carried out at night in the villages of Ni'lin and Bil'in (Ramallah), following the weekly anti?Barrier demonstrations. Following one of these operations in Ni'lin, residents clashed with the army, which subsequently established a "flying checkpoint" at the entrance of the village that disrupted movement of villagers in the early morning hours. Raids and arrests in these villages have intensified in recent months, targeting the houses of participants in anti?barrier demonstrations.

Media reports indicate that the Palestinians stepped up its measures against Hamas figures and members in the West Bank; on 21?22 December, the security forces of Palestinian Authority (PA) arrested 15 Palestinians allegedly affiliated to Hamas throughout the West Bank. On 21 December, PA security forces also opened fire towards a car carrying a figure affiliated with the Palestinian faction of Hizb Al Tahreer in Hebron City and then arrested him.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
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