Over the course of the day (May 15), several riots broke out in various locations, causing friction between Israeli security forces and the rioters and inciters. Hundreds of Syrian rioters infiltrated the Israeli-Syrian border into the village Majdal Shams. Riots in Judea and Samaria included rock hurling, the throwing of fire bombs and the burning of tires. In the Gaza Strip, rioters caused damage to the Erez humanitarian aid crossing.
– Statement by PM Netanyahu regarding events in the north
– Letters of complaint to the UN regarding demonstrations on Israel’s borders

 IDF Spokesperson update on riots


Rioters throw rocks from behind an ambulance (Photo: IDF Spokesperson)

Northern region:

During the midday hours, hundreds of Syrian rioters infiltrated the Israeli-Syrian border into the village Majdal Shams, and in the center of the village violently rioted against IDF forces. In attempt to turn the rioters back to Syria, forces fired selectively towards rioters who were targeting security infrastructure and some were injured as a result.

Additionally, along the Lebanese border, several rioters attempted to breach the border fence and to infiltrate into Israeli territory. IDF forces responded by firing warning shots.

In these incidents, three IDF officers and ten IDF soldiers were injured. IDF forces and Israel Police forces are operating to restore order in these locations.

Central region:

Violent riots broke out in several locations throughout Judea and Samaria. These riots included rock hurling, the throwing of fire bombs and the burning of tires.

South of Ramallah, in Qalandiya, approximately 600 Palestinians rioted violently, throwing rocks and flares at security forces who responded with riot dispersal means.

Furthermore, throughout the day there have been several incidents during which rioters hid behind ambulances for cover while throwing rocks at security forces.

Southern region:

Riots have taken place in several sites in the Gaza Strip, most notably adjacent to the Erez Crossing, where hundreds of Palestinian rioters threw rocks at IDF forces. The rioters arrived at the humanitarian aid crossing and caused damage to its structures. Soldiers fired in a controlled manner towards the legs of the leading rioters, in order to disperse them and prevent them from entering Israeli territory. A number of rioters were injured as a result.

In addition, during the afternoon hours IDF forces identified a suspect planting an explosive device along the security fence in the northern Gaza Strip. IDF soldiers fired towards the suspects, identifying a hit.

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16 May 2011 – 01:15 AM

Security crossings into Judea and Samaria closed for 24 hours

In accordance with the directives of the Minister of Defense and as part of the situation assessments adopted by the defense establishment, security crossings into the Judea and Samaria Region will continue to be temporarily closed for the next twenty-four Hours. The closure will be lifted on the night of Monday, May 16th, 2011 at 23:59. 

For the duration of the closure, persons in need of medical attention, humanitarian aid or exceptional assistance will be permitted to pass for care, with the authorization of the Civil Administration.

The passage of journalists will also be permitted. As always, the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit strongly suggests that passage into the Judea and Samaria region be coordinated in advance.