On his first visit to the occupied West Bank since 2017, Jordan’s King Abdullah met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas for two hours in Ramallah on Monday. Earlier, Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid met the King to discuss Ramadan strategies earlier this month.
Ghassan Alyan, the Israeli government’s coordinator in the occupied Palestinian territories, also traveled to Cairo to meet with Egyptian officials about security issues.
The Israeli occupation of the West Bank is on the verge of “exploding,” according to Palestinian officials. An 11-day Israeli assault on Gaza occurred last year during unrest at Al-Aqsa Mosque and Israeli settlement attempts to evict Palestinians from their homes.
After Ramadan, which begins next weekend, there are a number of potential flashpoints, including the relaunch of Land Day (March 30) and Palestinian Prisoners’ Day (April 17), as well as the anniversary of last year’s Gaza conflict and Nakba Day.
According to ICG analyst Tahani Mustafa, “we’ve seen significant tension” in Jerusalem, which “hasn’t died down” since the last line of conflict. There is no doubt that Jordan has a moral obligation to try to defuse the situation in some way.
Daesh/ISIS has already killed two Israeli police officers in Hadera on Sunday and stabbed four more Israelis to death last week in Beersheba, raising concerns about the security situation even further.
Increased security measures in the West Bank and Gaza Strip have been discussed by Israeli political leaders ahead of Ramadan. To ease tension, Israel plans to increase the number of Palestinian workers from Gaza who are allowed to travel to Israel, ease some import restrictions, and implement pre-pandemic plans for Palestinians in the West Bank to visit Jerusalem.