• On Friday, August 2, 2019, the return march in the Gaza Strip was held with about 6,000 participants (the average for the past weeks). Hamas security operatives were photographed removing young Palestinians from the region of the fence. Nevertheless, the violence near the fence included, as usual, the throwing of IEDs, hand grenades and Molotov cocktails. There were also attempts to sabotage the security fence and a number of attempts to cross the border into Israeli territory. In addition, this past week incendiary balloons were launched, some of them causing fires.
  • On August 1, 2019, the day before the return march, a Palestinian crossed the security fence east of Khan Yunis. He shot and wounded three IDF soldiers. The Palestinian, who was identified as a Hamas military operative, was shot and killed. He apparently acted on his own initiative. The IDF fired shells at a Hamas post and the incident came to an end.
  • A committee met in the Palestinian Authority (PA) to implement Mahmoud Abbas’s decision to stop acting in accordance with agreements signed with Israel. During the meeting Mahmoud Abbas said that the government would continue taking steps to separate the PA’s economy from Israel by examining Arab alternatives, especially in Jordan and Iraq. The PA’s minister of transportation said that talks were currently being held with Jordan regarding the transport of goods from the port of Aqaba instead of the Israeli ports through which merchandise passes today.

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