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  • January 1, 2009

    As OCL enters day 6, Israel announces that it will allow 443 foreign passportholders living in Gaza (mostly the spouses and children of Gazan Palestinians, including U.S., Russian, Moldovan,...

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  • November 21, 2006

    Overnight, the IDF sends troops back into Gaza City, surrounding the home of senior Hamas military cmdr. Ayman Dayif Allah Hassanian, ordering him to surrender, fatally shooting him and 2...

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  • April 26, 2006

    The IDF closes the Qarni crossing; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus and nr. Bethlehem, Hebron, Jenin (fatally shooting a Palestinian gunman), Ramallah (searching the home...

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  • October 2, 2005

    The IDF officially “suspends” Operation First Rain, which began on 9/24, to “see if the Palestinian Authority is willing and capable of taking advantage of the new situation.” PA security forces...

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  • September 5, 2004

    The IDF tightens roadblocks btwn. Jerusalem, Ramallah; imposes a curfew on Silwad nr. Ramallah; shoots, wounds a mentally handicapped Palestinian who strays into a closed military zone nr. Morag;...

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  • April 18, 2004

    The IDF fires on international, Israeli, Palestinian peace activists staging a nonviolent demonstration against the separation wall nr. Biddu, killing 1 Palestinian, wounding 8; demolishes the PA...

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  • April 17, 2004

    The IDF assassinates Hamas leader Rantisi, firing 2 missiles at his car as he drives through Gaza City, also killing his bodyguards Akram Nassar and Ahmad Ghurra, wounding 4 bystanders. 10,000s of...

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  • March 23, 2004

    The IDF discovers, disarms a bomb underneath a truck with Israeli license plates at a checkpoint outside Nablus; fatally shoots 2 armed Palestinians attempting to infiltrate Morag settlement;...

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  • January 25, 2004

    The IDF raids Nabi Salih village nr. Ramallah, rounding up and detaining the 500 residents outside in the rain for 2 hrs., searching homes, photographing and fingerprinting all men before...

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  • June 15, 2003

    The IDF raids Bayt Hanun, killing an AMB mbr., wounding 7 Palestinians; reimposes a curfew on Palestinian areas of Hebron after lifting it for 3 hrs.; bulldozes 39 dunams of land in Bayt Hanun, 12...

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  • June 10, 2003

    The IDF attempts to assassinate, wounds Hamas political leader and chief spokesman ‘Abd al-‘Aziz Rantisi, firing missiles at his car as he drives through Shati‘ r.c., killing a bodyguard and a...

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  • October 31, 2002

    The IDF continues Operation Vanguard in Jenin, conducting arrest raids, house-to-house searches, blowing up 4 Palestinian homes; fatally shoots a mentally handicapped Palestinian who strays too...

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  • February 8, 2002

    In Jerusalem, a group of Palestinian teenagers fatally stabs an Israeli woman. Israeli police shoot at, captured 4 of the teenagers, 1 of whom dies at the scene. Police say the 14-yr.-old boy...

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  • January 22, 2002

    The IDF raids an alleged explosives factory in Nablus, killing most-wanted Izzeddine al-Qassam Brigades West Bank head Yusif Suragji and 3 other Hamas mbrs.; the PA claims they were assassinated....

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  • December 20, 2001

    IDF forces pull back fr. parts of Nablus, Ramallah but reenter them later in the day. In Tal, IDF soldiers fire on protesters who assemble to block tanks fr. reentering Nablus, killing 1...

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  • December 19, 2001

    The PA says it has arrested 15 PSF officers on suspicion of having taken part in attacks on Israelis. In Gaza, the PSF attempts to arrest Hamas spokesman `Abd al-`Aziz Rantisi, but 100s of Hamas...

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  • April 29, 2001

    Israeli-Palestinian clashes continue. A Palestinian suicide bomber detonates a car bomb nr. a Jewish settler school bus in the West Bank, killing himself but causing no other injuries...

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  • December 27, 2000

    Ramadan ends. As a gesture to Hamas, the PA releases spokesman `Abd al-`Aziz Rantisi, who was detained on 10/18. (NYT 12/28; SA 1/2 in WNC 1/3)

    Barak conditionally accepts...

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  • July 30, 2000

    In Jericho, Eran and Erakat, the Israeli and PA interim affairs negotiators, discuss PA-Israeli relations in the wake of the Camp David summit, agree to hold more mtgs. this wk. to try to move...

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  • February 7, 2000

    In response to recent attacks that have killed 5 IDF soldiers in s. Lebanon, Israel carries out airstrikes against Hizballah bases in the Biqa` Valley and 3 power stations n. of the self-declared...

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  • September 5, 1999

    Israeli cabinet approves (21-2) Wye II accord. (MM, NYT, WP, WT 9/6)

    Car bombs explode in Haifa, Tiberias, killing the 3 suicide bombers, injuring 1 Israeli. No one claims responsibility....

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  • June 4, 1998

    In Palermo, Italy, 2-day Euro-Mediterranean mtg. (attended by 15 EU FMs, 12 Mediterranean FMs) closes. This is an ad hoc mtg., outside the normal cycle of "Barcelona" conferences, held to set...

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  • April 9, 1998

    After Hamas issues leaflet, video tape accusing the PA of collaborating with Israel in Sharif's murder, PA arrests Hamas spokesman `Abd al-`Aziz Rantisi on charges of breaking long-standing agmt....

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  • August 20, 1997

    In Gaza, Arafat opens 2-day national dialogue mtg., meets with Hamas leader `Abd al-Aziz Rantisi, warns that Israeli actions in response to the 7/30 bombings could lead to another uprising....

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  • July 31, 1997

    In Ramallah, the PC votes (56-1) to urge Arafat to dissolve the EA within 1 mo., appoint a new cabinet. After the session, Israel prevents 18 PC mbrs. fr. returning to their homes in Gaza. (CSM,...

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  • July 30, 1997

    2 suicide bombers dressed as ultra-Orthodox Jews detonate explosives in a crowded market in Jerusalem, killing 13 Israelis, wounding more than 170 Israelis, Palestinians. IDF immediately seals the...

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  • April 20, 1997

    UN Human Rights Comm. votes (51-1, with 1 abstention) to express grave concern over Israel's actions in Lebanon's Biqa` Valley, denounce Israel's persistent violations of the 1949 Geneva...

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  • September 10, 1995

    Israeli FMin. says it is having trouble planning a speaking tour of U.S. for a group of senior IDF reserve officers. PM Rabin is dispatching the delegation to encourage U.S. Jews to support the...

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  • August 23, 1995

    At Orient House, German delegation reaffirms to Faisal Husseini Germany's position that East Jerusalem is part of the Palestinian territories. (VOP 8/23, 8/24 in FBIS 8/25)

    In response to...

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  • December 20, 1993

    Reps. of Israel, PLO, and donor countries hold talks in Oslo on creation and funding of Palestinian police force. PLO official Nabil Shaath says $100 m. needed for task. (MM 12/21)

    UNGA...

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As OCL enters day 6, Israel announces that it will allow 443 foreign passportholders living in Gaza (mostly the spouses and children of Gazan Palestinians, including U.S., Russian, Moldovan, Ukrainian, Turkish, and Norwegian passport-holders) to leave on 1/2, raising concerns that a major ground incursion into Gaza is imminent.

Israeli actions: The IDF continues air strikes and naval bombardment of Gaza, hitting at least 70 targets and carrying out at least 40 air strikes. Primary targets include the PA parliament building, Justice Min., Education Min., the headquarters of the PA presidency in Gaza City, homes of several other Hamas and PRC cmdrs., tunnels on the Rafah border, suspected weapons depots, 2 mosques in Jabaliya r.c., a fishing harbor w. of Khan Yunis, a water reservoir in Bayt Hanun. Target areas include Abasan, Bani Suhayla, Bayt Hanun, al-Bureij r.c., Gaza City, Jabaliya, Khan Yunis, al-Maghazi r.c., Nussayrat, al-Qarara, Rafah, Tal al-Za‘atar. By day’s end, the Palestinian toll is at least 412 dead.

Palestinian actions: Palestinians fire 59 rockets (at least 10 of them fired by Islamic Jihad) and 1 mortar into Israel, with 1 longrange rocket hitting an apartment building in Ashdod (causing heavy damage but no major injuries) and 3 in open areas outside Beersheba (causing no damage or injuries). Beersheba municipal official Shimon Krief says that city emergency workers received only 18 calls from concerned citizens during incoming rocket warnings today, stating “People are relaxed.” Beersheba hospital reports that since the city first came under rocket fire on 12/30, it has treated 10 Israelis for moderate physical injuries and 154 for stress, adding that “with each attack, we’ve gotten significantly fewer patients.”

Humanitarian notes: Israel allows 60 trucks of humanitarian aid into Gaza. The International Comm. of the Red Cross (ICRC) warns that humanitarian needs are growing sharply despite the limited entry of aid, noting severe shortages of water, cooking gas, electricity. Israeli human rights groups issue an appeal to DM Barak to restore fuel shipments to Gaza to allow proper functioning of hospitals, water services, and so on.

Of note: Air strikes today include an attack on the home of Hamas’s Nizar Rayyan, a cleric and chief liaison btwn. Hamas’s political and military wings, in a densely populated residential area inside Jabaliya r.c., assassinating him and killing his 4 wives and 11 of his 12 children, causing heavy damage to surrounding buildings; Rayyan is the most senior Hamas official to be killed since Israel assassinated Abd al-‘Aziz Rantisi in 2004 and one of the only Hamas figures who has not gone into hiding since OCL began. (AFP, AP, BBC, HA, IDF, REU 1/1; Bloomberg, HA, ITV, NYT, REU, WP, WT 1/2; IDF 1/3; NYT, WP 1/4; MM, QA 1/6; IFM, PCHR 1/8)

The IDF seals the West Bank through 1/3, citing unspecified security concerns. IDF troops at Ni‘lin checkpoint fire rubbercoated steel bullets, percussion grenades, tear gas at mbrs. of a funeral procession that refuses to lower a Palestinian flag while going through the crossing, injuring 2 Palestinians; 1 tear gas canister lands inside a nearby Palestinian home, sparking a fire that guts the 1st floor. (IDF 1/2; PCHR 1/8)

Overnight, the IDF sends troops back into Gaza City, surrounding the home of senior Hamas military cmdr. Ayman Dayif Allah Hassanian, ordering him to surrender, fatally shooting him and 2 bystanders (including a 70-yr.-old woman) in an exchange of gunfire, also bulldozing 20 dunams (d.; 4 d. = 1 acre) of olive, citrus groves. Palestinians fire 5 rockets fr. Gaza into Israel, hitting a factory, killing an Israeli. Early in the morning, the IDF sends troops back into n. Gaza, clashing with Palestinians in Bayt Hanun, Bayt Lahiya, Jabaliya and also shelling the area, killing 1 Palestinian gunman, wounding at least 17 Palestinians; also leaving 2 IDF soldiers injured. The IDF also fires on Palestinian fisherman off the s. Gaza coast, wounding 1. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Jenin (firing on stone-throwing Palestinians, wounding 2) and Nablus, in al-Bireh, Jericho, Tulkarm r.c. In Gaza City, an unidentified gunman shoots, wounds fmr. Palestinian Council (PC) mbr. ‘Abd al-‘Aziz Shahin (Fatah) as he leaves a radio studio after giving an interview criticizing Hamas. In Khan Yunis, unidentified gunman kidnap, hold for several hrs. 2 Italian Red Cross employees, releasing them unharmed without comment. (MM 11/21; MM, NYT, OCHA, WP 11/22; PCHR 11/23)

The IDF closes the Qarni crossing; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Nablus and nr. Bethlehem, Hebron, Jenin (fatally shooting a Palestinian gunman), Ramallah (searching the home of Change and Reform PC mbr. Ahmad ‘Abd al-‘Aziz Malik). PA security forces at Gaza’s Qarni crossing prevent 2 Palestinian vehicles of PRC mbrs. carrying explosives that attempt to crash through the PA security barrier to attack the main transit building; 3 PA policemen, 2 gunmen are wounded in the exchange, and 3 gunmen are arrested; Israel claims that the PRCs were acting under the direction of Hamas, which denies the charge; PA Interior M Siyam says that attacking border crossings is against the national interest and should not be done. Meanwhile, mbrs. of the Yasir Arafat Brigades (considered an offshoot of the AMB) say that in response to Siyam’s plans to create the ESF, they are planning to form a new militia “to protect Fatah men against the Israeli enemy and against any attempt by any party inside the homeland to target them.” (IMEMC, REU 4/26; NYT, PCHR, WP 4/27; IFM, XIN 5/1; OCHA 5/3; PCHR 5/4)

The IDF officially “suspends” Operation First Rain, which began on 9/24, to “see if the Palestinian Authority is willing and capable of taking advantage of the new situation.” PA security forces clash with Hamas mbrs. in Gaza City, with violence spreading to Shati‘ r.c., leaving 1 PA police officer, 2 Palestinian bystanders dead, at least 50 Palestinians wounded over several hrs. in the first intra-Palestinian fighting in Gaza since the Israeli withdrawal, sparked when PA security forces allegedly tried to arrest Muhammad Rantisi, Hamas activist and son of assassinated Hamas leader ‘Abd al- ‘Aziz Rantisi; during the clashes Hamas mbrs. fire RPGs at 2 PA police stations, PA police run out of ammunition. Separately, shots are fired at the Gaza City home of Hamas political leader Mahmud Zahhar, causing damage but no injuries. Late in the evening, the IDF launches arrest raids, house searches nr. Tulkarm and in and around Bethlehem, Hebron. Israeli border police report that over the previous 2 days they have arrested 1,200 Palestinians in Jerusalem for failing to have travel or work permits. (AFP, IMEMC, YA 10/2; REU, UPI, WP, WT 10/3; HA, REU, WT, XIN 10/4; PCHR 10/6; DS 10/8; MEI 10/12)

The Israeli FMin. adopts a new “national image management” strategy to improve Israel’s image abroad, “rebranding” it as “cool,” “hip,” “relevant and modern,” by downplaying religion and “avoiding any discussion of the conflict with the Palestinians.” (Forward 10/14)

The IDF tightens roadblocks btwn. Jerusalem, Ramallah; imposes a curfew on Silwad nr. Ramallah; shoots, wounds a mentally handicapped Palestinian who strays into a closed military zone nr. Morag; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Hebron, and in Aida r.c., Balata r.c., Bayt Rima and Dayr Ghassana nr. Ramallah, Madama nr. Nablus, Salfit; begins work on new segments of the separation wall running s. of Hebron and btwn. East Jerusalem and the Qalandia checkpoint s. of Ramallah, bulldozing 500 d.; reportedly bulldozes large areas in Wadi al-Malih in the n. Jordan Valley. Palestinians in Nablus report that the IDF is digging a trench 3 m deep and 4 m wide to encircle Salim, Azmut, Dayr Hatab, Bayt Dajan, and Bayt Furik villages (combined population 30,000); 3 km have been completed. Armed Palestinians calling themselves the Fatah Fighters kidnap the PA’s security dir. for the Rafah checkpoint Saad al-Sayfan, accusing him of corruption. 15 armed Palestinians occupy the Khan Yunis governate building for 2 hrs., demand that the PA compensate local Palestinians who have lost their homes to IDF bulldozing. Palestinians fire 5 mortars at Gush Katif, causing no damage or injuries. A PA court in Gaza opens a trial against 7 alleged collaborators, including Muhammad and Rami Abu Qaynas, accused of providing Israel with information used to assassinate Hamas leader ‘Abd al-‘Aziz Rantisi on 4/17/04. ( JAZ 9/5; MENA 9/5 in WNC 9/7; VOI 9/6 in WNC 9/8; PR 9/8; PCHR 9/9; PR 9/15)

The IDF fires on international, Israeli, Palestinian peace activists staging a nonviolent demonstration against the separation wall nr. Biddu, killing 1 Palestinian, wounding 8; demolishes the PA Agriculture Min. dir. gen.’s home in Dayr al-Balah; fires on stone-throwing youths in Bethlehem, Burqa, Hebron, Qalandia, villages nr. Ramallah, Silwad; fires on residential areas of Dayr al-Balah, Rafah, Tulkarm; conducts arrest raids, house searches in al-Arub r.c., Dahaysha r.c., Dura. Hamas fires 5 Qassam rockets at Israeli targets in Gaza, causing no damage or injuries. In Gaza City, 10,000s of Palestinians take part in the funeral of Rantisi, his bodyguards; the Church of the Nativity closes its doors for the afternoon in protest of the Rantisi assassination. Late in the evening, 2 Israeli Arabs fire on an Israeli border patrol in the Galilee, causing no damage or injuries; the patrol returns fire, killing 1, wounding 1; the AMB takes responsibility. Jewish settlers fr. Kiryat Arba bulldoze 5 dunams of nearby Palestinian land, clash with Palestinians who attempt to stop them; the IDF intervenes to arrest 3 Palestinians, does not halt the bulldozing. A Palestinian dies of injuries received on 4/16. (PSCT, VOP 4/18 in WNC 4/20; AFP, AP, NYT, WP, WT 4/19; PR 4/21; PCHR 4/22)

The IDF assassinates Hamas leader Rantisi, firing 2 missiles at his car as he drives through Gaza City, also killing his bodyguards Akram Nassar and Ahmad Ghurra, wounding 4 bystanders. 10,000s of Palestinians throughout the West Bank, Gaza take to the streets to protest. Hamas vows retaliation, says it has appointed Rantisi’s replacement but will not identify him for security reasons. (Senior spokesman Mahmud Zahar, senior political leader Ismail Haniyeh are considered the likely successors.) The IDF strike comes hrs. after a Palestinian suicide bomber detonates a device inside the Erez Industrial Zone in Gaza, killing an Israeli border policeman, injuring 3; the AMB, Hamas claim joint responsibility. IDF undercover units raid Hebron and capture, beat, arrest an Arab Bank employee. The IDF also seals all West Bank and Gaza crossings except the Rafah checkpoint; tightens restrictions on Palestinian movement throughout the territories; fatally shoots a mentally handicapped Palestinian who strays too close to a Jewish settlement nr. Gaza City; denies passage to a Palestinian who suffers a heart attack at a Nablus checkpoint, allowing him to die; shells residential areas of Khan Yunis, cutting some electricity, seriously injuring a 9-yr.-old girl inside her home and 6 others elsewhere; fires on, shells residential areas of Dayr al-Balah, Tulkarm (seriously injuring a 5-yr.-old girl); fires on residential areas nr. Rafah; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Dayr al-Balah, Jenin; bulldozes 6 dunams of land in Bayt Hanun. (HA, MA, REU 4/17; AFP, MENA, MNR, PSCT, VOP 4/17, AFP, ATL, HA, IRNA, JP, LBC, MENA, MNR, al-Quds, VOP, YA 4/18 in WNC 4/20; NYT, WP, WT 4/18; CSM, MM 4/19; ITAR-TASS 4/19 in WNC 4/21; DUS, al-Ra’i 4/19, JT 4/20 in WNC 4/22; AYM 4/19, al-Quds, SA 4/21 in WNC 4/23; MM, PR 4/21; PCHR 4/22; WP 4/25; MEI 4/30)

The IDF discovers, disarms a bomb underneath a truck with Israeli license plates at a checkpoint outside Nablus; fatally shoots 2 armed Palestinians attempting to infiltrate Morag settlement; fires tear gas to disperse a group of Palestinians in Hebron demonstrating against the Yasin assassination, causing an elderly Palestinian to suffocate, die; fires on stone-throwing youths outside al-Fawwar r.c. nr. Hebron, on residential areas of Rafah (wounding a Palestinian construction worker at an UNRWA school site, a Palestinian inside her home); conducts arrest raids, house searches in Jayyus nr. Qalqilya; bulldozes 62 dunams of Palestinian land in al-Qarara. In the Hebron area, Palestinians throw stones at IDF troops, Jewish settler vehicles on bypass roads, causing no injuries but forcing the IDF to close the bypass routes temporarily. The Israeli navy fires on a “suspicious object” in the water 2 mi. off Gaza’s shore; Palestinian fishermen say they were targeted. Palestinian gunmen fire at a Jewish settler bus nr. Ofra, causing no injuries. Palestinians also fire a mortar at Gush Katif settlement, an antitank rocket at an IDF patrol in Gaza, causing no damage or injuries in either incident. In Israel, 1,000s of Israeli Arabs in Nazareth march in protest of Yasin’s assassination. A Palestinian dies of injuries received in the IDF missile attack on Rafah on 3/17. (AFP, AP, HA 3/23; HA, WT 3/24; PCHR 3/25)

Hamas names hard-line spokesman ‘Abd al-‘Aziz Rantisi as acting political head in Gaza and Hamas politburo chmn. Khalid Mishal, currently in exile in Damascus, acting head of the whole movement. (HA, MM 3/23; VOP 3/23 in WNC 3/25; al-Arabiyya TV [Dubai] 3/23 in WNC 4/27; HA, MM, NYT, REU, WP, WT 3/24; IDF Radio, LBC, MA, al-Quds, SA, VOI 3/24 in WNC 3/26; WP, WT 3/25; AYM 3/25, al-Quds 3/26 in WNC 3/30)

The IDF raids Nabi Salih village nr. Ramallah, rounding up and detaining the 500 residents outside in the rain for 2 hrs., searching homes, photographing and fingerprinting all men before releasing all residents, withdrawing; conducts a similar but smaller operation in Burqa village nr. Nablus, rounding up residents, firing on homes, arresting 1 man. The IDF also erects signs around Qalqilya warning that “any Israeli who enters” the city will be fined $780; imposes a curfew on, conducts arrest raids in al-‘Arub r.c., Nablus; bulldozes 2 dunams of land in Khan Yunis. Jewish settlers attack Palestinians in Hebron, injuring 5. (LAW 1/25; LAW, PCHR 1/29)

Hamas leader ‘Abd al-Aziz Rantisi proposes a 10 yr. truce with Israel in exchange for Israel’s withdrawal to 1967 borders, stressing that the deal would not include Hamas’s recognition of Israel or an end of the conflict. (REU 1/25; VOP 1/25 in WNC 1/27; HA, WP 1/26) (see 1/7)

The IDF raids Bayt Hanun, killing an AMB mbr., wounding 7 Palestinians; reimposes a curfew on Palestinian areas of Hebron after lifting it for 3 hrs.; bulldozes 39 dunams of land in Bayt Hanun, 12 dunams in Dayr al-Balah; fires on residential areas of Brazil r.c.; conducts arrest raids in Araba, Bethlehem, Hebron. A 7-yr.-old Palestinian dies of injuries received in Israel’s attempted assassination of Rantisi on 6/10, bringing that toll to 3; a 2d Palestinian dies of injuries received on 6/8. Palestinians fire Qassam rockets fr. Rafah for the 1st time, causing no damage or injuries. The IDF dismantles 1 uninhabited settlement outpost (possibly the same one dismantled on 6/9, reoccupied on 6/10). Peace Now says that Jewish settlers have set up 5 new unauthorized settlement outposts in the past wk. (WT 6/15; HA, HP, MM, NYT, WP 6/16; PR 6/18; LAW, PCHR 6/19)

The IDF attempts to assassinate, wounds Hamas political leader and chief spokesman ‘Abd al-‘Aziz Rantisi, firing missiles at his car as he drives through Shati‘ r.c., killing a bodyguard and a Palestinian woman walking nearby, wounding 27. In a rare acknowledgment, Israel confirms it targeted Rantisi, saying it took the decision after Rantisi called off Hamas cease-fire talks with the PA. Later in the day, IDF helicopters fire missiles at a 2d car in Jabaliya, allegedly targeting 2 Palestinians who fired 5 Qassam rockets at Sederot earlier, causing no damage or injuries; 3 Palestinian bystanders are killed, 30 (including the 2 targets) are wounded. Abbas condemns the Rantisi attack as a “terrorist attack in the full meaning of the word,” saying it was aimed at sabotaging the road map; Hamas says it is a “declaration of war,” vows to “commit operations that will shake Israel.” The IDF also fatally shoots wanted Palestinian Issam Ibrahim in Jenin in what may be an assassination; fatally shoots 2 Palestinians in s. Gaza; fires on, wounds a Palestinian nr. Morag settlement; fires on residential areas of Hebron, Khan Yunis; bulldozes 5 dunams of land in Jabaliya; conducts arrest raids in Battir, Bayt Iba, Dura, Haris, Hebron, Jericho, Nablus (targeting Hamas), Qatanna, Tulkarm, al-Walaja, Yatta; dismantles another 5 unauthorized settlement outposts, all of them uninhabited. The Israeli High Court blocks the removal of 1 occupied outpost, Havat Gilad, which Israel attempted to dismantle in fall 2002. Jewish settlers rebuild 1 outpost taken down on 6/9. (BBC, HA, LAW, MM 6/10; ITAR-TASS, VOI, MENA 6/10 in WNC 6/12; MM, NYT, PR, WP, WT 6/11; AFP, AKH, DUS, HA, IDF Radio, JP, JT, MA, MENA, NHR, QA, al-Quds, VOI, YA, XIN 6/11 in WNC 6/13; JPI, LAW, PCHR, WP 6/12; AYM, JP 6/12 in WNC 6/14; PR 6/18, 6/25; MEI 6/27; MEI 7/11)

The IDF continues Operation Vanguard in Jenin, conducting arrest raids, house-to-house searches, blowing up 4 Palestinian homes; fatally shoots a mentally handicapped Palestinian who strays too close to the Rafah border fence; fires on Palestinians who stray too close to Beit El settlement, killing 1 Palestinian, wounding 2; fires on Palestinians waiting at a Khan Yunis checkpoint (injuring 1), residential areas nr. Neve Dekalim settlement (injuring 8, including 1 woman, 4 children), a group of children at the entrance to Tulkarm r.c. (injuring 1), Palestinians outside the Qabatya municipal buidling (injuring 4, 3 of whom are detained for several hrs. without medical attention); conducts arrest raids in Hebron, Tulkarm; demolishes a Palestinian home nr. Kefar Darom settlement; bulldozes13 dunams of land nr. Aley Sinai settlement. In Gaza City, 3 Hamas mbrs. are killed in an explosion; Hamas spokesman `Abd al-`Aziz Rantisi acknowledges the men were probably making a bomb. Hamas mbrs. attack journalists who arrive to cover the scene, destroying 2 cameras, lightly injuring a Reuters cameraman and reporter; the main Palestinian journalists union in Gaza orders a boycott of coverage of all Hamas activities in protest; Hamas apologizes. Some 22 Jewish settlers attack the Za’tara mayor, municipal surveyor, an a surveying team, destroying their equipment, maps, documents. A Jewish settler confiscates Palestinian land nr. Dayr al-Balah, razes the area, sets up greenhouses. (HA, NYT, WT 11/1; LAW, PCHR 11/6; PR 11/13)

In Jerusalem, a group of Palestinian teenagers fatally stabs an Israeli woman. Israeli police shoot at, captured 4 of the teenagers, 1 of whom dies at the scene. Police say the 14-yr.-old boy dropped dead of no apparent cause; witnesses say he was beaten, perhaps shot by soldiers. In n. Israel, a car mysteriously explodes killing 2 Palestinians; the IDF claims they were Islamic Jihad mbrs. en route to stage a car bombing. The IDF again fires tear gas, rubber-coated steel bullets at demonstrators nr. Arafat's Ramallah headquarters, injuring 6; conducts arrest raids in Birzeit and in Tamun, where troops detain 7, wound 10 with live ammunition, occupy 12 Palestinian homes as IDF outposts, uproot 150 olive trees. The PA again calls for adherence to Arafat's cease-fire. At a pro-Hamas rally in Jabaliya attended more than 10,000 Palestinians, Hamas spokesman Rantisi vows more suicide attacks against Israel, says that anyone who seeks to stop the intifada "wants to tear us apart." The NIHC organizes a separate protest march fr. Shati` to the PC building in Gaza City, denouncing the U.S.'s biased policy, calling on Arab states to take a strong, unified stand on the Palestinian situation. (AYM 2/8 in WNC 2/11; NYT, WP, WT 2/9; LAW, PCHR 2/13; MA 2/15 in WNC 2/19)

The IDF raids an alleged explosives factory in Nablus, killing most-wanted Izzeddine al-Qassam Brigades West Bank head Yusif Suragji and 3 other Hamas mbrs.; the PA claims they were assassinated. Hamas vows to launch an "all-out war" against Israel. In retaliation, an AMB gunman opens fire in West Jerusalem, wounding 16 Israelis before being fatally shot by Israeli police. Hamas spokesman `Abd al-`Aziz claims that the PA is actively tipping off the IDF to the location of Hamas operatives, granting the IDF entry to PA areas; threatens that Hamas will make sure the "conspirators . . . pay the price." In Nablus, 2,000 Palestinians angry over the deaths march on the local PA headquarters and PSF office demanding the release of 28 detained Hamas mbrs., torching 3 PSF cars. PSF officers shoot tear gas, stun grenades at the crowd, fire their weapons in the air, killing 1 Palestinian. To calm tensions, the PSF "temporarily" releases the brother of 1 of the Hamas mbrs. killed today so he may attend the funeral. IDF withdraws to the outskirts of Tulkarm after a massive 24-hr. incursion but also fires on residential areas of Khan Yunis. In Ramallah, 1 IDF soldier is killed by IDF machine gun fire; the army says it is investigating the incident. (CNN, HA, MM 1/22; HA, NYT, WP, WT 1/23; PCHR 1/23; MEI 1/25)

IDF forces pull back fr. parts of Nablus, Ramallah but reenter them later in the day. In Tal, IDF soldiers fire on protesters who assemble to block tanks fr. reentering Nablus, killing 1 Palestinian. The IDF also shells residential areas of Nablus, causing 1 Palestinian to die of a heart attack; conducts arrest raids in Hebron, Karawat Bani Zayd. In Gaza, the PSF again attempts to take Hamas spokesman Rantisi into custody but clashes with 100s of Hamas mbrs. and supporters, leaving 15 rioters and PSF officers injured. Israel says attempts to arrest Rantisi were designed to fail. Late tonight in Gaza, the PSF fires on a group of Islamic Jihad mbrs. preparing to launch a mortar at a Jewish settlement, killing 1 Palestinian. (AFP, MM 12/20; NYT, WP, WT 12/21; AYM, al-Quds 12/22 in WNC 12/26; PCHR 12/26)

In Washington, Zinni briefs Powell on his talks with Israel, the PA. Afterward, the U.S. says it will Zinni back to the region once it sees "sustained and decisive" action by both sides toward halting violence, noting that the PA in particular must do more to "combat terror and violence." (USIS Washington File 12/20; MENA 12/21 in WNC 12/26)

The PA says it has arrested 15 PSF officers on suspicion of having taken part in attacks on Israelis. In Gaza, the PSF attempts to arrest Hamas spokesman `Abd al-`Aziz Rantisi, but 100s of Hamas mbrs. and supporters surround Rantisi's home, engage in a gun battle with PSF officers. The PSF also closes a shop in Gaza that allegedly made homemade mortars. A senior Hamas official says that the group has taken a decision to halt suicide operations in Israel but does not intend to announce it publicly. Nr. Tubas, a Palestinian shepherd is seriously injured when he steps on a land mine thought to have been buried by the IDF (see 11/22). (AFP, LAW, PCHR 12/19; NYT, WP 12/20; WP 12/21, 12/22)

Israeli, PA security officials hold talks on possible new security arrangements in the West Bank. (NYT 12/20; WT 12/21)

Israeli-Palestinian clashes continue. A Palestinian suicide bomber detonates a car bomb nr. a Jewish settler school bus in the West Bank, killing himself but causing no other injuries. Palestinians also fire 2 mortars at a Kefar Darom settlement in Gaza. Inside the Green Line, Israeli police find, safely detonate a bomb in Netanya. The IDF shells a PSF office in Gaza, residential areas of Khan Yunis; bulldozes Palestinian land in Khan Yunis; conducts an arrest sweep in Jalazun. Jewish settlers set fire to a Palestinian olive grove in Salfit, destroying 50 trees. (WP 4/30; LAW 5/4)

Arafat orders the popular resistance comms. to disband and their mbrs. (most of whom are Fatah mbrs., some of whom are PSF officers) to "return to their original security positions," calls senior PSF officer Yasir Zanun (a Fatah mbr. and a leader of the resistance comms.) in for questioning, has the PSF arrest Hamas spokesman `Abd al-`Aziz Rantisi for statements accusing Arafat of treason for resuming security talks with Israel. Fatah tanzim leader Barghouti, Hamas, Islamic Jihad, the PFLP strongly oppose disbanding the resistance comms. (WP 4/30; AYM 5/1 in WNC 5/3; WJW 5/3; SA 5/3 in WNC 5/4; MEI 5/4 WP 5/7; MEI 5/18)

Israeli FM Peres presents Israel's response to the Jordanian-Egyptian proposal to Mubarak in Cairo, Jordanian FM Khatib in Amman. Egypt, Jordan say they will study Israel's reservations and proposed changes, but they are not willing start a new process of "talks about talks." (MENA 4/29 in WNC 4/30; HA, NYT, WP 4/30; HA, MM 5/1; AYM 5/1 in WNC 5/3; MM 5/2; MEI, MM 5/4)

Ramadan ends. As a gesture to Hamas, the PA releases spokesman `Abd al-`Aziz Rantisi, who was detained on 10/18. (NYT 12/28; SA 1/2 in WNC 1/3)

Barak conditionally accepts Clinton's 12/23 peace proposals as a basis for discussion but says Israel seeks clarification on some points. Arafat says the PA cannot accept or reject the proposals without additional information, forwards Clinton a list of clarifying questions. Clinton phones the leaders of Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia to urge them to press Arafat to accept the parameters. (AFP, MENA 12/27 in WNC 12/28; XIN 12/27, MENA 12/28 in WNC 1/2; AP, NYT, WP, WT 12/28; AYM 1/3 in WNC 1/8)

In Jericho, Eran and Erakat, the Israeli and PA interim affairs negotiators, discuss PA-Israeli relations in the wake of the Camp David summit, agree to hold more mtgs. this wk. to try to move final status negotiations forward. (WT 7/31)

The Israeli and PA senior negotiators on security affairs, Israel's Internal Security M Ben-Ami and the PA's Gaza PSF head Muhammad Dahlan meet in Gaza to review security arrangements discussed at Camp David, discuss the release of more Palestinian prisoners. (Associated Press [Internet] 7/30; JP [Internet] 7/31)

The PA police arrest senior Hamas official `Abd al-`Aziz Rantisi on charges of incitement for criticizing the PA's handling of the Camp David talks. (al-Quds 7/31 in WNC 8/2; LAW 8/3; HJ 8/3 in WNC 8/4; al-Quds 8/10 in WNC 8/14)

UNIFIL resumes its deployment in s. Lebanon, setting up bases at 4 points along the blue line. (WT 7/31; WJW 8/3) (see 7/28)

After receiving assurances for his safety fr. pres. Lahoud, Fmr. pres. Amin Gemayel, a Christian leader who was forced into exile over his alliance with the U.S. against Syria during the Lebanese civil war, returns to Lebanon for the 1st time in 8 yrs. Some 3,000 supports rally to welcome him in his hometown of Bikfayya. (WP 7/31; MM 8/3; see also MM 7/19)

Jewish settlers erect 30 mobile homes on 3 sites (Qaryat, Jaloud, Lubban) nr. Nablus, and confiscate 50 dunams of Palestinian land in Mawasi nr. Rafah, begin constructing 50 greenhouses. (PA Information Min. press release 7/30; LAW 8/10)

In response to recent attacks that have killed 5 IDF soldiers in s. Lebanon, Israel carries out airstrikes against Hizballah bases in the Biqa` Valley and 3 power stations n. of the self-declared security zone, wounding 18 Lebanese civilians and leaving much of Lebanon without electricity. The raids are the most severe since 6/99, before Barak took office. (MM, NYT, WP, WT 2/8; AFP 2/8 in WNC 2/10; MEI 2/11; JP 2/18)

The PA says it is suspending negotiations until Israel provides acceptable answers questions on FAPS talks, FRD implementation. (NYT 2/8; SA 2/8 in WNC 2/10; AYM 2/8 in WNC 2/14)

The PA releases senior Hamas official `Abd al-`Aziz Rantisi, who has been jailed for nearly 2 yrs. without charges for his outspoken criticism of the Oslo process. (NYT 2/8; JP 2/18)

Egyptian FM Musa makes 1-day trip to Syria to discuss with Pres. Asad developments in the peace process. (MENA 2/7 in WNC 2/8; NYT 2/9)

Tunisian secy. of state for foreign affairs Tahar Sioud meets with Israeli FM Levy, marking the 1st visit to Israel of a high-ranking Tunisian since the countries established diplomatic relations 6 yrs. ago. (NYT 2/8)

Palestinian judges go on a 3-day strike to protest the failure of the PA police to stop an attack on a Bethlehem courthouse on 2/6. (LAW 2/7; NYT, PCHR 2/8)

IDF troops storm a home in West Bank area C to arrest 2 Palestinians wanted for security reasons. The mother of the 2 men suffers a fatal heart attack fr. the shock of the predawn raid. (LAW 2/9)

Israeli cabinet approves (21-2) Wye II accord. (MM, NYT, WP, WT 9/6)

Car bombs explode in Haifa, Tiberias, killing the 3 suicide bombers, injuring 1 Israeli. No one claims responsibility. PA says that it has arrested 50 alleged Hamas mbrs. over the past few wks. as a "precautionary measure" in advance of a revised Wye agmt. Sources close to Hamas report that the PA has arrested 300 Hamas mbrs., sympathizers since 7/99. (AFP 9/5 in WNC 9/7; MM, NYT, WP, WT 9/6; ATL 9/6 in WNC 9/7; HJ 9/6, SA 9/7 in WNC 9/8; MM 9/7; WT 9/8; WJW 9/9; JP, MEI 9/17)

Palestinians in East Jerusalem stage general strike to protest Wye II. 10s of Palestinians stage sit-in at Orient House to protest the agmt.'s clauses on prisoner releases. (AFP [Internet] 9/5)

By order of the PA High Court, the PA releases senior Hamas cleric Faraj al-Gul, who was arrested in Gaza on 8/8, along with Hamas leader `Abd al-`Aziz Rantisi, on charges of "publishing incorrect information and terrorizing the public." Rantisi is still being detained. (WT 9/8)

In Palermo, Italy, 2-day Euro-Mediterranean mtg. (attended by 15 EU FMs, 12 Mediterranean FMs) closes. This is an ad hoc mtg., outside the normal cycle of "Barcelona" conferences, held to set priorities for preparation for the 4/99 Euro-Mediterranean conference planned for Stuttgart, Germany. The Barcelona process focuses on 3 areas for Mediterranean cooperation, unification: politics and security; economics and finance; social and cultural issues. The last mtg. was held in 3/97. (RJ 6/4, SA 6/5 in WNC 6/8; JTV 6/5 in WNC 6/9; JP 6/13)

Jordan, U.S. end their annual 1-mo. joint military maneuvers in the Jordanian desert. (JTV 6/4 in WNC 6/8)

Palestinian High Court orders PA police to release Hamas spokesman `Abd al-Aziz Rantisi, who was arrested 4/9. PA police refuse to comply. (PCHR press release 6/4)

After 2 days of closed door briefings, Richard Butler, exec. chmn. of the UN Special Comm. (UNSCOM) in charge of Iraqi weapons inspections, gives the UN Security Council (UNSC) a "road map" of missing information UNSCOM needs before it can decide whether to lift sanctions; says Iraq could fulfill obligations by 10/98 if it continues its recent cooperative attitude. Iraq rejects agenda as nonstarter. (WP 6/5; NYT, WP 6/6; MM 6/26)

After Hamas issues leaflet, video tape accusing the PA of collaborating with Israel in Sharif's murder, PA arrests Hamas spokesman `Abd al-`Aziz Rantisi on charges of breaking long-standing agmt. not to publicly criticize the PA leadership, closes Reuters's Gaza bureau for airing video. (MM 4/9; ITV 4/9 in WNC 4/10; CSM, NYT, WP 4/10; JP 4/11; PR 4/17; MEI 4/24) (see 4/6)

In Gaza, Arafat opens 2-day national dialogue mtg., meets with Hamas leader `Abd al-Aziz Rantisi, warns that Israeli actions in response to the 7/30 bombings could lead to another uprising. Islamic Jihad mbrs. also attend. (CSM, MM, NYT, WP, WT 8/21; RMC 8/21 in WNC 8/22; MM, NYT, PR, WT 8/22; RE 8/22 in WNC 8/25; PR 8/29; CSM 8/30, 9/8) (see 8/16)

In Amman, a 2-day "popular conference for the defense of Jerusalem" opens. (al-Dustur, JT 8/21 in WNC 8/22; JT 8/23 in WNC 8/26)

In Bethlehem, PA police beat Palestinian Salih Musa during a traffic dispute, take him to Bethlehem hospital. 6 policmen are later arrested in connection with the incident. Bethlehem is still under the internal closure imposed by Israel following the 7/30 bombings. (LAW 8/21)

In retaliation for Hizballah's 8/19 shelling, Israeli air force (IAF) strikes far n. of the self-declared security zone, hitting a Hizballah base, an area nr. the Lebanese army unit that took part in the 8/18 shelling, a power station, injuring 2 Lebanese civilians. ILMG holds an emergency mtg. to discuss the deteriorating situation. Israel says that strike on power station was meant to show the Lebanese government that "a situation in which Israeli citizens cannot live peacefully while the Lebanese continue to live their lives normally will not be tolerated." (MM 8/20; AFP, RL, VOL 8/20 in WNC 8/21; CSM, MM, NYT, WP, WT 8/21; WT 8/25)

In Ramallah, the PC votes (56-1) to urge Arafat to dissolve the EA within 1 mo., appoint a new cabinet. After the session, Israel prevents 18 PC mbrs. fr. returning to their homes in Gaza. (CSM, WP, WT 8/1; LAW 8/7; PR 8/8)

With less than 24-hrs. notice, Syrian Pres. Asad travels to Iran as head of a delegation comprising his VP, FM, several senior military cmdrs.; discusses Syrian-Iranian relations with outgoing Pres. Rafsanjani. (MM 7/31; RMC 7/31 in WNC 8/1; MM 8/1; SATN 7/31, IRIB Television [Tehran] 8/1 in WNC 8/4; MA 8/3 in WNC 8/5; MEI 8/8)

Jordan's Crown Prince Hassan, FM Tarawnah meet with EU special envoy Moratinos. (RJ 7/31 in WNC 8/1)

Following a mtg. with his inner cabinet, PM Netanyahu threatens to send commandos into PA areas to preempt any new anti-Israeli attacks, to halt transfer of all tax revenues to the PA, to jam all Palestinian radio and television broadcasts; calls on the U.S., international donors to halt aid to the PA. (MM 7/31; RMC 7/31 in WNC 8/1; CSM, WP, WT 8/1)

IDF detains 2 Palestinian families fr. the West Bank town of Dahariyya whose sons have been missing for over a yr., but they are unable to identify the 7/30 bombers' bodies. Israeli cabinet orders the arrest of PA's Gaza police cmdr. Brig. Gen. Jabali for encouraging attacks on Israeli settlements (see 7/23). PA police arrest 28 Hamas mbrs., including Rantisi. PA, Israeli security forces hold 2 mtgs. during the day. (MM 7/31; IDF Radio, QY, RMC 7/31 in WNC 8/1; CSM, NYT, WP, WT 8/1)

New York City police seize 5 pipe bombs, arrest 1 Egyptian, 2 Jordanians in a raid on a Brooklyn apartment. Police were tipped to the bombs by a Pakistani, Muhammad Shindli, who believed that his friends, Ghazi Ibrahim Abu Mayzar and Lafi Khalil (who both identify themselves as Palestinian), were planning to bomb the New York subway. Abu Mayzar had stated in his application for asylum in the U.S. that he had been arrested in Israel on charges of "being a mbr. of a terrorist organization." The 3d man, Egyptian `Abd al-Rahman Musabah, is detained as a witness. Hamas denies any connection to the men. (NYT, WP, WT 8/1; RJ 8/1 in WNC 8/4; NYT, WP 8/2; AFP 8/2 in WNC 8/5; NYT, WT 8/3; al-Hadath [Amman] 8/4 in WNC 8/5; NYT 8/5; WJW 8/7; MEI 8/8)

Unnamed Gulf diplomats reveal that Sidi al-Madani al-Ghazi Mustafa al-Tayyib, financial director for Saudi dissident and alleged "terrorist financier" Osama bin Laden, has been in custody in Saudi Arabia since 5/97. Saudi authorities have passed some of Tayyib's revealed information to the CIA, FBI to track militant groups in Detroit, New York. (WT 8/1)

Lebanese court sentences 5 Japanese Red Army mbrs. to 3 yrs. in jail on charges of forging official stamps, illegal entry into Lebanon, forging passports. (VOL 7/31 in WNC 8/1; CSM, WP 8/1) (see 7/29)

2 suicide bombers dressed as ultra-Orthodox Jews detonate explosives in a crowded market in Jerusalem, killing 13 Israelis, wounding more than 170 Israelis, Palestinians. IDF immediately seals the West Bank, Gaza, preventing even town-to-town movement; suspends recognition of Palestinian passports; sends troops to seal the PA-controlled cities. A letter signed by Hamas's military wing, Izzeddin al-Qassam Brigades, takes responsibility, but Israeli security question its authenticity, Hamas political leader `Abd al-Aziz Rantisi says Hamas was not involved. (MM 7/30; IDF Radio, ITV, RE 7/30 in WNC 7/31; IDF Radio, ITV, JTV 7/30, MA, RAI Uno Television [Rome], RE, YA 7/31 in WNC 8/1; CSM, NYT, WP, WT 7/31; ITV 7/31 in WNC 8/6; CSM, WT 8/1; AFP, MAP [Rabat], VOA 8/1 in WNC 8/4; NYT 8/3; al-Dustur, al-Majd 8/4 in WNC 8/7; CSM 8/5; WJW 8/7; MEI, PR 8/8; JP 8/9; CSM 8/11)

In the wake of the bombings, PM Netanyahu, FM Levy phone Secy. of State Albright, demand that the U.S. put pressure Arafat. The Israeli cabinet suspends all contacts with the PA until Arafat acts against Islamists "with determination," destroys their infrastructure. However, 1 mtg. btwn. Israeli, PA security officials is held. Over night, an IDF helicopter hovers over Arafat's Gaza headquarters, an Israeli warplane circles the Gaza Strip. (MM 7/30; ITV 7/30 in WNC 7/31; MM, NYT, WP, WT 7/31; YA 7/31 in WNC 8/4; WT 8/1)

As a result of the bombings, U.S. special envoy Ross cancels plans to leave today for the Middle East to meet with Arafat, Netanyahu. (MM, WT 7/30; NYT, WP, WT 7/31)

In Amman, King Hussein receives Israeli Knesset "Coalition Bloc for Peace," comprising Gesher, Third Way, Yisra'el B'Aliya, Shas MKs and the dir. of Israel's International Center of Peace in the Middle East. (JTV 7/30 in WNC 7/31)

State Dept. lifts the 12-yr.-old ban forbidding Americans to travel to Lebanon after that government agrees to take new steps to improve security at various locations, pledges to ratify an international convention against hostage-taking. The decision does not include lifting the ban on flights by Lebanese carriers to the U.S. or by U.S. carriers to Lebanon. (MM, WP 7/30; RL, RMC 7/30 in WNC 7/31; WT 7/31; al-Safir 7/31 in WNC 8/1; RL 8/4 in WNC 8/5; WT 8/6; al-Safir 8/6 in WNC 8/8; MEI 8/8)

Saudi Arabian dissident Sayigh backs out of a plea agmt. with the FBI to cooperate in the al-Khobar bombing case; says that he is innocent of any wrongdoing; was pressured by Canadian immigration officials to make statements on the bombing to avoid being deported to Saudi Arabia, where he faces execution. (NYT, WT 7/31) (see 6/30)

ILMG opens 2-day mtg. to discuss 1 Lebanese, 3 Israeli complaints. (VOL 7/30, RL 7/31 in WNC 8/1)

UN extends the UNIFIL mandate for 6 mos. (RL 7/30 in WNC 8/1)

Israeli naval forces detain 5 Lebanese fishermen off the coast of s. Lebanon, interrogate them before releasing them. (RL 7/29 in WNC 7/30) (see 7/28)

UN Human Rights Comm. votes (51-1, with 1 abstention) to express grave concern over Israel's actions in Lebanon's Biqa` Valley, denounce Israel's persistent violations of the 1949 Geneva Conventions. (al-Manar Television 4/21 in WNC 4/24)

Labor leader and fmr. PM Peres calls on Netanyahu to resign over the Bar-On affair. (ITV 4/20 in WNC 4/22)

Israel releases Hamas leader `Abd al-`Aziz Rantisi after 3 yrs. in prison. (MM 4/23; PR 4/25) (see 8/23/95)

In s. Lebanon, 2 SLA mbrs. are killed by separate bombs placed by Hizballah. Israel retaliates by shelling areas around Jazzin. (AFP, RL 4/20 in WNC 4/22; WP 4/21)

Israeli FMin. says it is having trouble planning a speaking tour of U.S. for a group of senior IDF reserve officers. PM Rabin is dispatching the delegation to encourage U.S. Jews to support the peace process, explain the Israeli government's positions, however, many Jewish conservative, reform groups are refusing to meet. (HA 9/11 in FBIS 9/12)

Reacting to the expulsion 9/8 of 350 Palestinian refugees with Lebanese laissez-passer, Lebanon closes sea routes with Libya, says Palestinians wishing to return must obtain entry visas fr. Lebanese embassy, but orders embassies not to issue new documents or visas without case-by-case approval by the Interior Min. Libya sends 10s of busses carrying 50 Palestinians each to Egypt, prompting Egypt to stop allowing in Palestinians without permits to enter Gaza, leaving 100s stranded on the border. (VOL 9/7, MENA, VOL 9/8 in FBIS 9/8; NYT, WP, WT 9/10; MBC, RL 9/8, AFP, RL, VOL 9/9, AFP, RL, VOL 9/10 in FBIS 9/11; MM 9/11; NYT 9/13)

Frmr. Israeli Islamic Movement mbrs. led by Shaykh Atif Khatib announce they will present an Islamic list for 10/96 Knesset elections that will incl. a candidate for PM. It would be the 1st time an Arab would run for PM. Shaykh Khatib says the new party, Islamic Arab Faction, will be left leaning, pro-peace process, for Arab equality. (YA 9/10 in FBIS 9/12; HA 9/18 in FBIS 9/21)

In Hebron, Jewish settlers storm Palestinian girls school, beat headmistress, injure 4 girls (aged 6-10) who took part in street protest. (MM, NYT, WP, WT 9/11; NYT 9/13)

In Nablus, armed men kidnap Fatah Hawk official Na'il Shubaytah. 25 Fatah Hawks march through city armed with grenades, pistols, machine guns in protest; accuse supporters of Issam Abu Bakr, who was suspended fr. the group 1 mo. ago. (AFP 9/10 in FBIS 9/11)

At Tel Ashqelon prison in Israel, 20 Palestinian prisoners beat to death their Hamas cell mate `Abd al-Fatah al-Rantisi, who was serving a 15-yr. sentence as a collaborator. (AFP 9/10 in FBIS 9/11)

At Orient House, German delegation reaffirms to Faisal Husseini Germany's position that East Jerusalem is part of the Palestinian territories. (VOP 8/23, 8/24 in FBIS 8/25)

In response to news reports 8/18 showing settlers' flowering gardens in Kiryat Arba and dried-up Palestinian fields in neighboring Hebron, Israeli Agriculture Min. orders Efrat settlement to temporarily divert 1,000 cu.m./day of water to Hebron to ease the severe water shortage. (MM 8/21; JP, QY 8/20, QY 8/23 in FBIS 8/24)

Israeli military court sentences Hamas's `Abd al-`Aziz Rantisi, arrested after his return fr. exile in Lebanon 12/15/93, to 42 mos in jail, plus 28 mos suspended for being a mbr. of an illegal organization. (MM 8/24)

IDF lifts closure on Gaza, extends closure on West Bank to 8/27. 6,000 Palestinian workers are allowed to enter Israel fr. Gaza. (QY, VOP 8/23 in FBIS 8/23; QY 8/23 in FBIS 8/24)

Reps. of Israel, PLO, and donor countries hold talks in Oslo on creation and funding of Palestinian police force. PLO official Nabil Shaath says $100 m. needed for task. (MM 12/21)

UNGA passes resolution supporting peace process and calling for Israeli withdrawal fr. "the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including Jerusalem, and fr. the other occupied Arab territories." Resolution, which calls settlements "illegal and an obstacle to peace," adopted by vote of 92 for and 5 against, with 51 abstentions. (MM 12/21)

Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem Monsignor Michel Sabbah, in interview, urges Israel to "rethink" position on sovereignty over Jerusalem, free Hamas leader Shaykh Ahmad Yasin as a goodwill gesture. (MM 12/20; WT 12/21)

Israeli govt. official confirms that govt. intends to annex "several hundred" dunums of West Bank land to extend Givat Ze'ev settlement toward Jerusalem. Settlers' council says 136,415 Israelis live in o.t. (MM 12/21)

Fateh Uprising, in statement fr. Damascus, warns Christian pilgrims they may not be safe if they visit Jerusalem or other holy sites in o.t. during Christmaseason. (AFP 12/20 in FBIS 12/21; WT 12/21)

3 Hamas mbrs. returned fr. exile 12/15- 'Abd al-'Aziz Rantisi, 'Abd Allah Dukan, and Muhammad Sham'a-placed under administrative detention for 6 mos. (Qol Yisra'el 12/20 in FBIS 12/21)