• This past week the Gaza Strip, Judea and Samaria were relatively quiet. The Palestinians are apparently devoting most of their attention to fighting the coronavirus. The most serious event in Judea and Samaria was the throwing of Molotov cocktails at an IDF post near Ariel. Two Palestinians were involved. The soldiers opened fire, apparently killing one and wounding the other (the event is being investigated).
• Politically, the intensity of the Palestinian campaign against Israel’s intention to annex territories has weakened, probably because of the Palestinian focus on the COVID-19 crisis. Practical activities decreased in Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip. A protest rally scheduled for Ramallah was postponed. Palestinian TV reported that the stopping of Palestinian protest activities had no significance, since they had not been cancelled but rather postponed until an improvement in the COVID-19 situation.
• Developments in the fight against the coronavirus were the following:
◦ The surge in the number of Palestinians infected with COVID-19 in the Palestinian Authority (PA) and east Jerusalem continues. The number of active cases has reached 5,569 in the PA territories and 795 in east Jerusalem. In Gaza, on the other hand, only eight active cases remain (although there is still concern regarding an outbreak of the virus inside the Gaza Strip).
◦ The PA ordered a lockdown accompanied by limitations and their strict enforcement. However, in various hotspots local residents protested against the limitations and the helplessness of the government. Demonstrations were held in Hebron to protest the extension of the lockdown and severe criticism was heard from the residents of the Jalazone refugee camp in the Ramallah district.
◦ The PA’s public health system is facing a severe shortage of medical equipment. A spokesman for the ministry of health said only 80 ventilators remained for coronavirus patients, 20 of them already in use. The PA, in collaboration with UNRWA, decided to formulate an emergency plan for the refugee camps, which are potential focal points for an outbreak of the virus. A spokesman for the PA government said UNRWA was responsible for matters of health in the refugee camps.