The Gaza conflict and the meeting on Palestinian national unity
Dozens of people were killed in attacks by the Israeli army in the Palestinian territories in 2022 – the most brutal attack in seven years. The attacks are taking place, among others, in the area between Nablus and Jenin, towns that have been targeted by the Israeli military for the past six months. Authorities are looking for Palestinians there to blame for attacks carried out in Israeli towns. According to the Palestinian Ministry of Health, four Palestinian teenagers were recently shot dead by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank; a fifth boy died of his wounds. In Palestinian retaliation, an Israeli soldier was killed near an illegal Israeli settlement in the occupied West Bank. This is the second such attack on Israeli forces in a matter of days, confirmed by Lions’ Den, a loose coalition of Palestinian militants that has formed in recent months.
Leaders of rival Palestinian groups met in Algeria during talks on proposals for reconciliation and Palestinian national unity. Hamas, Fatah and 1212 other groups have agreed to hold parliamentary and presidential elections within a year. Ongoing political rifts since 2007 have undermined Palestinian state aspirations and prevented elections from taking place since the last vote in 2005 and 2006. Among the controversial issues to be discussed is the future of Hamas’ military wing, the Izz Al-Din Kassam Brigade, which both Fatah and Israel want to disarm completely. Gaza residents are sceptical about the success of the talks.