OnPolitics: Things are escalating quickly

·3 min read
This is an aerial view of the golden Dome of the Rock Mosque at the Al Aqsa Mosque compound, known by the Jews as the Temple Mount, top, as Jewish worshipers pray at the Western Wall, bottom, in east Jerusalem's Old City is seen in this  Oct 4 2004 photo. Israel will limit the number of Muslim worshippers at Islam's third holiest shrine to 60,000 during the holy month of Ramadan, the police minister said Wednesday,  Oct 13 2004 citing concerns that part of the compound could collapse under a larger number of visitors. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty) ORG XMIT: JRL115
This is an aerial view of the golden Dome of the Rock Mosque at the Al Aqsa Mosque compound, known by the Jews as the Temple Mount, top, as Jewish worshipers pray at the Western Wall, bottom, in east Jerusalem's Old City is seen in this Oct 4 2004 photo. Israel will limit the number of Muslim worshippers at Islam's third holiest shrine to 60,000 during the holy month of Ramadan, the police minister said Wednesday, Oct 13 2004 citing concerns that part of the compound could collapse under a larger number of visitors. (AP Photo/Oded Balilty) ORG XMIT: JRL115

Happy Tuesday, OnPolitics readers!

Today, ride-hailing companies Uber and Lyft announced they will offer free rides to vaccination sites to help meet President Joe Biden's target of 70% of U.S. adults getting at least one vaccine shot by July 4.

Tomorrow, House Republicans are expected to hold a vote to strip Rep. Liz Cheney of her leadership position.

It's Mabinty, with the day's top political news – much of which is happening outside the USA.

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Things have escalated with Israel and Palestine

What's happening: For weeks now, Palestinian protesters and Israeli police have clashed on a daily basis in and around Jerusalem's Old City – home to major religious sites sacred to Jews, Christians and Muslims and the emotional epicenter of the Middle East conflict.

The latest clashes began a month ago with an Israeli move to block some Palestinian gatherings at the beginning of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, already a time of heightened religious sensitivities. After those restrictions eased, tensions over a plan to evict dozens of Palestinians from an east Jerusalem neighborhood continued to fuel confrontations.

24 hours of death and destruction: Over the last 24 hours, Palestinian militants in Gaza have launched hundreds of rockets into Israel, and the Israeli military has carried out a stream of airstrikes targeting what it says are Hamas' military installations.

Since sundown Monday, 28 Palestinians — including 10 children and a woman— were killed in Gaza, most by Israeli airstrikes, health officials told the Associated Press. The Israeli military said at least 16 of the dead were militants. Three Israeli women were killed in Hamas strikes in Ashkelon and Tel Aviv. More than 700 Palestinians were hurt in clashes with Israeli security forces in Jerusalem and across the West Bank.

How Washington is reacting: On Tuesday, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Biden has been briefed daily on the developments. She said he has directed his advisers to engage “intensively with senior Israeli and Palestinian officials, as well as leaders throughout the Middle East."

As the eviction dispute heated up, Secretary of State Antony Blinken called on both sides to de-escalate tensions and stop the violence.

Read more: How we got to this point from USA TODAY's Deirdre Shesgreen.

Real quick on health care

More than 1 million Americans signed up for health insurance during the ongoing special enrollment period for HealthCare.gov, the Biden administration announced Tuesday.

"Today’s milestone demonstrates that there is a need and a demand for high quality, affordable health insurance across this country," Biden said in a statement.

Biden created a special enrollment period that runs from Feb. 15 through Aug. 15 to help people find coverage during the pandemic, an effort boosted by expanded premium subsides included in the $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief packaged passed in March.

More from Washington:

Need some inspiration? Sí se puede! —Mabinty

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Israel, Palestine conflict: What's going on in the Middle East