This is part 139 of a chronology begun by the Journal of Palestine Studies in Spring 1984, and covers events from 16 May to 15 August 2018 on the ground in the occupied Palestinian territories and in the diplomatic sphere, regionally and internationally. With U.S. president Donald Trump's peace initiative at a standstill, tensions between Hamas and Israel nearly escalated into a fourth major armed conflict since the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza in 2005. Egyptian and UN mediation efforts secured a series of cease-fires, but tensions remained high. The Ramallah-based Palestinian leadership resisted Egyptian efforts to add a new Palestinian reconciliation agreement into ongoing backchannel talks between Israel and Hamas over a possible long-term cease-fire agreement. Meanwhile, attendance slowly declined at the weekly mass protests along Gaza's border, which began in 3/2018 under the Great March of Return banner, as Palestinian youths in Gaza turned increasingly to a new form of resistance: lashing incendiary devices to kites or balloons and flying them across the border fence into southern Israel.

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