There was an increase in tension on Israel’s southern border this past week when three rockets were launched at Israel from the Gaza Strip. In response Israeli aircraft attacked an underground Hamas facility. The rockets were probably launched by so-called “rogue” operatives, since Hamas is currently not interested in a military confrontation. Terrorist military wing operatives launched about 20 test rockets into the sea, a message to Israel that they continue to develop their military capabilities. No significant terrorist attack was carried out in Judea and Samaria, but Palestinians continue throwing stones and Molotov cocktail at Israeli vehicles.
Protests against Israel’s intention to annex parts of Judea and Samaria continued, culminating in a “day of rage” in Gaza and demonstrations (not attended as well as expected) in Judea and Samaria. Apparently the fact that Israel had not formally announced the imposition of Israeli law on Palestinian territories coupled with the Palestinian Authority (PA)’s investing most of its efforts in halting the spike in COVID-19 infection, has made antiIsraeli activity less urgent (despite public announcements that “the danger of annexation still exists”).
Jibril Rajoub, secretary of Fatah’s Executive Committee, and Saleh al-‘Arouri, deputy head of Hamas’ political bureau, held an exceptional (virtual) joint press conference. They presented a display of joint resistance to the “deal of the century” and Israel’s annexation plans.
However, in ITIC assessment, rhetoric aside, Hamas and Fatah are far from agreeing on a joint strategy against Israel. The discrepancy between rhetoric and reality was illustrated by an attack in Jenin by the Palestinian security apparatuses on the convoy of a Hamas operative who had been released from an Israel jail.