News Roundup for April 18, 2022

April 18, 2022
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J Street works to promote an open, honest and rigorous conversation about Israel. The opinions reflected in articles posted in the News Roundup do not necessarily reflect J Street’s positions, and their posting does not constitute an endorsement from J Street.

Top News and Analysis

Israeli Government Crisis Deepens After Closing of Major Mosque, The New York Times
Israel’s fragile coalition government edged closer to collapse on Sunday night, after a small Islamist party announced it was freezing its participation in the coalition, following a recent rise in tensions between the Israeli police and Muslims at a major mosque in Jerusalem, and after the Israeli police blocked Muslim access to the Aqsa Mosque compound to prevent clashes.

Clashes Erupt Again Near Flashpoint Jerusalem Holy Site, The Washington Post
Israeli police on Sunday entered the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem’s Old City to secure the way for Jewish visitors to the flashpoint holy site, fueling clashes that left 17 Palestinians wounded, according to Palestinian medical workers. The unrest happened just two days after clashes with Palestinians at the same site. Violence in Jerusalem between Israeli security forces and Palestinian demonstrators a year ago escalated into an 11-day Gaza war.


Jordan’s King Accuses Israel of ‘Illegal Provocative Measures’ on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount, Haaretz
Jordan’s king urged Israel on Sunday to “cease illegal provocative measures” on the Temple Mount and called for more international pressure, after yet another day of clashes on the holy Jerusalem site, which has left both Palestinians and Israelis wounded. Jordan, which serves as custodian of Al-Aqsa Mosque, specifically condemned Israeli authorities for letting Jewish worshipers on the site.

Iran Confirms Centrifuge Workshop Moved To Underground Site, AP
Iran has confirmed it relocated a centrifuge facility to its underground Natanz nuclear site, state media reported, days after the U.N. atomic watchdog said it installed surveillance cameras to monitor the new workshop at Tehran’s request.

Israeli Cops Filmed Clubbing Palestinian Journalists on Temple Mount, Haaretz
Israeli police forces operating on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount in recent days were caught on camera hitting Palestinians journalists with clubs. None of the officers involved have been detained or questioned, and the police have yet to comment.

Huge Passover Congestion at Airport and Crossings to Egypt, Jordan, The Times of Israel
Extreme congestion was seen on Sunday at Ben Gurion Airport, as well as at the border crossings with Egypt and Jordan, as hundreds of thousands of Israelis left the country to vacation abroad over the Passover holiday, after two years of pandemic isolations and cancellations.

Israeli Settlers Block Reopening of West Bank Road to Palestinians After Two Decades, Haaretz
Israeli Cops Filmed Clubbing Palestinian Journalists on Temple Mount

Opinion and Analysis

When a Military Commander Takes Orders From Settlers, Haaretz
Zehava Galon explains, “For decades, the settlers have effectively been the commanders on the ground. Company commanders frequently meet settler leaders in their sectors. Soldiers receive direct commands from settlement security coordinators.”

Biden Shouldn’t Fall for the Trap Trump Laid to Block Iran Deal Re-entry, Responsible Statecraft
Senior policy fellow and deputy head of the Middle East and North Africa programme at the European Council on Foreign Relations Ellie Geranmayeh writes, “The bottom line is that [the JCPOA] provides a verifiable path to stop, and quickly react to, a potential Iranian march towards a nuclear bomb…[T]hey are heading this way because its terms remain the best compromise on offer. And, in any case, behind the scenes those in charge in Tehran, Washington, and European capitals know their respective plan Bs look hideous.”