174 / 14704 Results
  • February 12, 2009

    Final Israeli election results are posted, showing Kadima maintaining a 1-seat lead over Likud. The close race means that Kadima’s Livni and Likud’s Netanyahu will have to compete to form a...

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  • January 26, 2009

    No violence is reported in Gaza. Israel allows in 293 truckloads of humanitarian aid and commercial goods. In the West Bank, the IDF raids Battir village nr. Bethlehem early in the morning and...

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  • January 20, 2009

    Obama is sworn in as the 44th president of the U.S. (NYT, WP, WT 1/20; MA, MM, NYT, WP, WT, YA 1/21; HA, JP, MA, MM, QA, al-Ra’i, al-Watan, YA 1/22)

    The IDF completes its withdrawal from...

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  • January 12, 2009

    Olmert’s security cabinet revives discussion of opening phase 3 of OCL (see 1/9), agreeing to make a final decision whether to expand or wind down operations within 2–3 days, by which time the IDF...

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  • June 30, 2007

    The IDF makes 7 air strikes on Hamas and Islamic Jihad targets in Gaza, assassinating 3 senior Islamic Jihad cmdrs. (Raed Ghannam, Ziyad Ghannam, Muhammad al-Ra‘i) and wounding 7 bystanders in a...

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  • January 26, 2005

    The IDF shells residential areas of Dayr al-Balah, killing a 3-yr.-old Palestinian girl outside her home; assassinates Hamas mbr. Mahir Abu Sunayna, firing on his car as he drives in Qalqilya,...

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  • January 9, 2005

    The IDF confiscates 352 d. in northwest Jerusalem for construction of the separation wall; fires nr.aPalestinian polling station in Khan Yunis; obstructs Palestinian movement in al-Mawasi; fires...

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  • November 12, 2004

    In the morning, a closed military memorial service for Arafat is held on a military base outside Cairo. The Palestinian leadership, Arafat’s family, Egyptian envoy Omar Sulayman then escort Arafat...

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  • November 2, 2004

    U.S. Pres. George W. Bush narrowly wins reelection. (MM 11/2; HA, MM, NYT, WP, WT 11/3; VOP 11/3 in WNC 11/5; MM 11/4; Globes, HA, JAZ, JP, JT, MA, MENA, YA 11/4 in WNC 11/6; al-Safir 11/4, al-...

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  • October 7, 2004

    The IDF fires a missile at 2 Palestinian boys (ages 12 and 15) playing with pipes and sticks in a street Jabaliya r.c., killing them; says video footage fr. drones in the area appeared to show...

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  • July 20, 2004

    The IDF shells a house in Gaza’s Shatti r.c. in an attempt to assassinate PRC n. Gaza cmdr. ‘Abd al-Karim al-Quka, who, along with 4 Palestinians, is injured. The IDF also denies an ailing 60-yr.-...

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  • July 16, 2004

    The IDF demolishes 3 brick factories, bulldozes agricultural land in continuing operations in Bayt Hanun; fires on residential areas of Rafah, Tulkarm r.c.; bulldozes 50 dunams of land nr....

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  • July 9, 2004

    The IDF raids a section of Gaza City nr. Netzarim settlement, occupies an abandoned house, shells a house (causing extensive damage but no injuries), bulldozes 20 dunams of land. The IDF also...

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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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  • April 14, 2004

    The IDF fires rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas at Palestinians demonstrating against the separation wall nr. Biddu, wounding 12; blows up 2 Palestinian homes in Bethlehem, 1 in Nablus;...

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  • March 22, 2004

    The IDF assassinates Hamas spiritual leader and founder Shaykh Ahmad Yasin, firing 3 internationally banned flechette missiles at him as he leaves a Gaza City mosque after morning prayers, also...

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  • February 2, 2004

    Despite Israel’s pledge (1/29) not to seal the occupied territories in the wake of the Jerusalem bombing, Israeli-Arabs seeking to enter Gaza with pre-arranged permits to celebrate Id al-Adha with...

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  • October 15, 2003

    Unidentified Palestinians detonate a roadside bomb outside Erez crossing as a U.S. emb. convoy (carrying the cultural attache, en route to interview Fulbright scholarship candidates) passes,...

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  • October 13, 2003

    The IDF pulls most troops out of the Rafah area during the day, but reinvades al-Salam neighborhood after dark, shelling residential areas, razing land, demolishing homes. The IDF also raids a...

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  • October 5, 2003

    Israeli aircraft strike an alleged Islamic Jihad training camp deep inside Syria, just 10 mi. northwest of Damascus in ‘Ayn Sahib, injuring at least 1 security guard. Israel says the attack is in...

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  • October 4, 2003

    A female Islamic Jihad suicide bomber detonates a device in a Haifa restaurant, killing 14 Israeli Jews, 5 Israeli Arabs, wounding around 50. (The bomber, Hanadi Taysir Jaradat, who had just...

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  • September 6, 2003

    An IDF warplane drops a 550-lb bomb on a Gaza City building in an attempt to assassinate Hamas founder and spiritual leader Shaykh Ahmad Yasin, several senior Hamas leaders meeting there,...

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  • August 21, 2003

    The IDF assassinates senior Hamas political leader and spokesman Ismail Abu Shanab, firing 5 missiles at his car as he drives through Gaza City, also killing 2 bodyguards, wounding at least 19...

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  • August 19, 2003

    A Palestinian suicide bomber fr. Hebron detonates a device on a bus in West Jerusalem, killing 15 Israelis, 5 Americans, wounding more than 100 (13 seriously, 13 moderately), and violating a...

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  • June 29, 2003

    The IDF conducts arrest raids in al-Bireh, Ramallah. (PM 6/30; PCHR 7/3)

    Fatah, Hamas, Islamic Jihad formally announce cease-fires against all Israelis everywhere for a minimum of 3 mos....

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  • June 21, 2003

    The IDF assassinates senior Hamas mbr. Abdallah Qawasmi, ambushing and shooting at his car as he drives through Hebron; Israel claims Qawasmi plotted the 6/11 Jerusalem bus bombing; Sharon calls...

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  • June 4, 2003

    The IDF demolishes 4 Palestinian homes in Rafah, 3 in Yatta; conducts arrest raids in Jenin. In Jerusalem, some 20,000 Jewish settlers demonstrate against the Aqaba summit. Palestinians fire a...

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  • March 14, 2003

    The IDF raids a building in Jenin r.c., killing local AMB cmdr. Yusif Masharqa, 4 Islamic Jihad mbrs. in what may be an assassination; fatally shoots a stone-throwing Palestinian in Azun; conducts...

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  • June 8, 2002

    The IDF says that in the past 24 hrs., it has killed 6 Palestinians attempting attacks on Israeli targets, including 2 Palestinians swimming toward the Gaza settlement of Dugit,...

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  • May 7, 2002

    A suicide bomber detonates a device in an unlicensed gambling club in the Rishon Letzion suburb of Tel Aviv, killing 15 Israelis, injuring 57. Hamas's military wing claims responsibility, but the...

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Final Israeli election results are posted, showing Kadima maintaining a 1-seat lead over Likud. The close race means that Kadima’s Livni and Likud’s Netanyahu will have to compete to form a governing coalition. (al-Ahram, AY, IHY, JP, Jordan Times, MA, MM, NHR, QA, al-Ra’i, YA, 2/12; NYT, WP 2/13)

During the day, the IDF makes an air strike on a lumber store in Gaza’s Jabaliya r.c., destroying it, heavily damaging 20 other stores, wounding 11 Palestinians (including 5 children ages 1–6). Late in the evening, an IDF drone fires on 2 PRC mbrs. riding a motorcycle nr. Khan Yunis, assassinating PRC mbr. Ali al-Qidra, wounding a 2d PRC mbr. Israel allows 109 truckloads of humanitarian aid and commercial goods into Gaza, as well as a limited amount of fuel for Gaza’s power plant. In addition, Israel permits Gazans to export 25,000 carnations to Europe via the Kerem Shalom crossing and Ben-Gurion Airport, marking the 1st permitted exports in nearly a yr. The IDF says no further Gazan exports are planned, though the situation will be reviewed periodically. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in Qabatya and nr. Hebron, Ramallah, Salfit. (WP 2/13; PCHR 2/19)

No violence is reported in Gaza. Israel allows in 293 truckloads of humanitarian aid and commercial goods. In the West Bank, the IDF raids Battir village nr. Bethlehem early in the morning and occupies a Palestinian home, stating the home is needed for several days “for security purposes”; makes a latenight raid on a market in al-Fara‘ r.c. nr. Tubas, firing on stone-throwing youths who confront them, wounding 2 but making no arrests; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in and around Bethlehem, nr. Jenin, Nablus, Ramallah. (PCHR 1/29)

Obama’s newly appointed Middle East envoy George Mitchell begins an 8-day “listening tour,” with planned stops in Israel, Ramallah, Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, France, and Britain. He will not meet with Hamas officials. (Globes, MM, al-Ra’i, YA 1/26; MM, NHR, NYT, QA, al-Thawra [Damascus], WP 1/27; WJW 1/29)

Obama is sworn in as the 44th president of the U.S. (NYT, WP, WT 1/20; MA, MM, NYT, WP, WT, YA 1/21; HA, JP, MA, MM, QA, al-Ra’i, al-Watan, YA 1/22)

The IDF completes its withdrawal from Gaza’s built-up areas, moving troops to elevations overlooking the Strip, but slows its withdrawal fr. n. Gaza and secures positions inside the northern border after Palestinians fire 8 mortars toward Israel today (all of which land inside Gaza, causing no damage or injuries). The IDF responds with air strikes on several launching sites, causing no reported injuries. IDF troops on the s. Gaza border fire on residential areas of al-Qarara, wounding 1 Palestinian. In Khuza, 1 Palestinian is wounded when he accidentally triggers unexploded IDF ordnance. Israeli naval vessels fire warning shots at Palestinian fishing vessels going out to sea for the first time since OCL began, forcing them to stay close to shore. As Gazans continue to return to their homes, residents of the farming village of Juhur al-Dik (who evacuated the village several days after the ground invasion began on 1/3) report that about a third of the 600 homes have been bulldozed or heavily damaged and much crop land has been razed. Meanwhile, 1,000s of Palestinians turn out for 4 rallies across Gaza organized by Hamas to celebrate the end of OCL. Israel allows 217 truckloads of goods (mostly humanitarian aid) into Gaza. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts synchronized, late-night house searches in Bethlehem and neighboring Aida and Dahaysha refugee camps, making no arrests; conducts similar, synchronized house searches in villages nr. Jenin and villages nr. Hebron, making no arrests; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Nablus. (HA, JP, REU, UNOSAT 1/20; NYT, WP, WT 1/21; DUS, MM, PCHR, WJW 1/22; DUS, MM, al-Ra’i 1/23; PCHR 1/29)

Olmert’s security cabinet revives discussion of opening phase 3 of OCL (see 1/9), agreeing to make a final decision whether to expand or wind down operations within 2–3 days, by which time the IDF believes ground forces will have done all they can from the open and suburban areas they currently hold to weaken Hamas’s ability and desire to fire rockets.

Combat notes: The IDF significantly increases attacks, particularly around Gaza City, and continues to send troops into Gaza. Palestinians report (AYM 1/12) heavy clashes with the IDF n. of Bayt Lahiya, in Daraj and al-Shuja‘iyya neighborhoods on the eastern boundary of Gaza City, and in Dahadih and al-Zaytun to the south of the city. Overnight, the IDF also sends troops back into Khuza (see 1/11) under heavy artillery fire (possibly including white phosphorous), occupying a number of homes as staging posts and prompting 1,000s of residents to flee their homes.

The IDF reports carrying out more than 120 air strikes (half of them after nightfall, targeting Gaza City), uncovering 1 boobytrapped home and 2 booby-trapped tunnels. Targets include the PA Interior Min. offices in n. Gaza, more than 35 tunnels on the Rafah border, homes of Hamas leaders, at least 22 mortar and rocket launching sites, at least 26 groups of armed men, at least 10 “Hamas outposts,” 2 suspected weapons depots and manufacturing facilities, 2 mosques, 2 hotels. Air strike target areas include Bayt Lahiya, Gaza City (city center and Shaykh Ridwan, al-Sudaniyya, Tal al-Hawa, al-Zaytun), Jabaliya town, al-Maghazi r.c., Nussayrat, Rafah, al-Shabura r.c., al-Shuka, Tal al-Za‘atar, the Twam area (northern outskirts of Gaza City), Yibna r.c. IDF gunboats shell Nussayrat, Rafah, a fishing port w. of Rafah. Heavy tank and artillery fire are reported in Bayt Hanun, al-Bureij r.c., Dayr al-Balah, Gaza City (al-Shuja‘iyya, al-Zaytun), Jabaliya town, al-Mughraqa, Twam.

Israeli attacks are so intense that reliable updates on Palestinian casualty estimates are not possible. The IDF estimates killing at least 30 Palestinians in air strikes. UNRWA reports at least 19 Palestinian children killed and 52 children injured in nighttime operations (possibly overlapping with air strikes), 1 paramedic killed by tank fire in Jabaliya during the day. The IDF reports 8 soldiers wounded (1 severely, 1 moderately, 6 lightly) in various incidents, all after nightfall; 3 of the soldiers are injured when they trigger a setup in a booby-trapped house.

Palestinians fire 17 rockets and 7 mortars into Israel, with 1 rocket in Ashqelon and 1 in Sederot causing damage but no reported injuries.

Humanitarian notes: The IDF observes the daily 3-hr. humanitarian lull, allowing 120 trucks carrying humanitarian aid to enter Gaza. UNRWA estimates that internally displaced Gazans number now 90,000: 30,000 seeking shelter in UNRWA schools; 60,000 in the homes of friends and relatives. (AP, AYM, BBC, HA, IDF, IFM, JP, MA, MM, al-Ra’i, REU, RFM, WP, YA 1/12; HA, MM, NYT, REU, WP, WT, YA 1/13; AYM, HA, MM, NYT, WP, WT 1/14; PCHR 1/15; BBC, WJW 1/16; ITIC 1/19)

In the West Bank, unidentified armed Palestinians fire on an IDF patrol nr. Kiryat Arba settlement, wounding 3. In response, the IDF raids, searches Palestinian homes nr. Kiryat Arba, making no arrests. The IDF also conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Hebron. (HA 1/13; PCHR 1/15)

The IDF makes 7 air strikes on Hamas and Islamic Jihad targets in Gaza, assassinating 3 senior Islamic Jihad cmdrs. (Raed Ghannam, Ziyad Ghannam, Muhammad al-Ra‘i) and wounding 7 bystanders in a strike on a car in Khan Yunis, killing another 4 Palestinians and wounding 2 in a strike on an alleged weapons depot in al-Maghazi r.c., and striking the same site later in the day, heavily damaging 6 nearby homes, wounding 1 bystander. Palestinians fire several rockets fr. Gaza into Israel, lightly injuring 1 Israeli, damaging 1 home and 2 other buildings. In Bureij r.c., a Hamas mbr. is injured when explosives he is handling detonate prematurely. (NYT, WP, WT 7/1; OCHA 7/4; PCHR 7/5)

The IDF shells residential areas of Dayr al-Balah, killing a 3-yr.-old Palestinian girl outside her home; assassinates Hamas mbr. Mahir Abu Sunayna, firing on his car as he drives in Qalqilya, wounding and arresting 2 AMB mbrs. riding with him, wounding a 15-yr.-old bystander; fires on residential areas of Rafah. Nr. Khan Yunis; 100 Jewish settlers protesting the deployment of PA security forces clash with PA officers, IDF soldiers, and Israeli police; slash PA and IDF jeep tires; 5 settlers are arrested. Palestinians fire 2 mortars at Sederot, causing no damage or injuries. (JAZ 1/26; PCHR, WP, WT 1/27; OCHA, PR 2/2; PCHR 2/3)

Sharon adviser Dov Weisglass, PA Negotiation Affairs M Saeb Erakat,Abbas security adviser Muhammad Dahlan hold the 1st high-level public political talks since Israel suspended contacts on 1/13 to begin planning for an Abbas-Sharon mtg. (BBC 1/26; HA, NYT, WP, WT, XIN 1/27; NYT 1/29; al-Ra’i, VOP 1/30 in WNC 1/31; PR 2/2)

The IDF confiscates 352 d. in northwest Jerusalem for construction of the separation wall; fires nr.aPalestinian polling station in Khan Yunis; obstructs Palestinian movement in al-Mawasi; fires on 3 Palestinians attempting to infiltrate Gaza fr. Egypt, wounding and detaining all 3. Palestinians fire 3 Qassam rockets at the western Negev, causing no damage or injuries. (JAZ 1/9; VOI 1/10 in WNC 1/12; OCHA 1/19)

After a robust campaign period, PA presidential elections are held. Abbas wins with 62% of the vote. Hamas, Islamic Jihad do not participate. (HA, NYT, WP 1/9; HA, Interfax, ITAR-TASS, JAZ, MENA, Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation TV, PSCT, al-Quds, al-Ra’i, VOI, VOP, XIN, YA 1/9 in WNC 1/11; JAZ 1/9, AFP, AP, ATL, HA, Interfax, ITAR-TASS, JAZ, MENA, PSCT, VOI, VOP, XIN, YA 1/10 in WNC 1/12; HA, MM, National Democratic Institute press release, NYT, WP, WT 1/10; VOP 1/10, AYM, HJ, JP 1/12 in WNC 1/15; CSM, MM, NYT, WP, WT 1/11; VOP 1/11 in WNC 1/13; PR 1/12; HJ 1/12 in WNC 1/14; MEI 1/21)

In the morning, a closed military memorial service for Arafat is held on a military base outside Cairo. The Palestinian leadership, Arafat’s family, Egyptian envoy Omar Sulayman then escort Arafat’s body by helicopter to Ramallah, where 10,000s of grieving Palestinians overrun the Muqata in an attempt to observe his sunset funeral. Israel executes Operation New Leaf–the Day After to step up Israeli security but ensure that “Palestinians’ dignity is preserved” for3days of mourning: declares a state of emergency, seals the occupied territories until 11/16, pulls out of all West Bank population centers, reinforces the troop presence surrounding Ramallah and leading to Jerusalem, facilitates West Bank Palestinians’ access to Ramallah for the funeral, allows PA security officers to carry weapons for the 3-day mourning period in order to maintain crowd control. The only reported violence of the day is in Rafah, where the IDF fires on, shells residential areas. Meanwhile, massive symbolic funerals are held in Gaza, with (as in the West Bank) the full participation of all political groups, including Hamas. (BBC, CNN, WT 11/12; ATL, DS, Interfax, IRNA, ITAR-TASS, JAZ, JT, MENA, MNR, al-Ra’i, VOI, VOP 11/12 in WNC 11/16; NYT, WP, WT 11/13; HA, MM, PR 11/15; DS 11/17; PCHR 11/18)

U.S. Pres. George W. Bush narrowly wins reelection. (MM 11/2; HA, MM, NYT, WP, WT 11/3; VOP 11/3 in WNC 11/5; MM 11/4; Globes, HA, JAZ, JP, JT, MA, MENA, YA 11/4 in WNC 11/6; al-Safir 11/4, al-Dustur, MNR, al-Ra’i 11/5, al-Dustur 11/6 in WNC 11/9; SA 11/6 in WNC 11/10; MM 11/5; HA 11/9; JPI 11/12)

The IDF blows up 3 Palestinian homes in and nr. Askar r.c. belonging to the family of the 11/1 suicide bomber, 2 senior PFLP mbrs.; raids a clinic in Nablus, searches ambulances, interrogates paramedics; conducts arrest raids and house searches, bulldozes 50 d., demolishes 2 poultry farms and several wells nr. Kefar Darom. AMB mbr. Fadi Qaffisha dies of injuries received in the IDF assassination of Mari on 11/1. Palestinians fire several mortars at Neve Dekalim, causing no damage or injuries. A Jewish settler injures a 7-yr.-old Palestinian girl in a hit-andrun incident nr. Hawara south of Nablus. (PRCS 11/2; VOI 11/2 in WNC 11/4; NYT, WP 11/3; VOI 11/3 in WNC 11/5; PCHR, WJW 11/4)

The IDF fires a missile at 2 Palestinian boys (ages 12 and 15) playing with pipes and sticks in a street Jabaliya r.c., killing them; says video footage fr. drones in the area appeared to show militants preparing to launch a rocket. Also in n. Gaza, the IDF fires on residential areas of Bayt Hanun, seriously wounding a 12-yr.-old child in her home; demolishes 1 Palestinian home north of Bayt Hanun. A 13-yr.-old Palestinian dies of injuries received in an IDF attack on Jabaliya on 9/30; a 16-yr.-old Palestinian dies of injuries received in Jabaliya on 10/1; a 22-yr.-old Palestinian dies of injuries received in Bayt Hanun on 10/3. The IDF also fires on 2 Palestinians who approach the Israeli border fence nr. the Sufa crossing into Israel in s. Gaza, killing 1 Palestinian while the other escapes; fires on residential areas, demolishes 1 Palestinian home in Rafah; shells residential areas, bulldozes 86 d. nr. Khan Yunis. Palestinians fire 2 Qassam rockets at Sederot, 2 antitank missiles at IDF troops in Rafah, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF moves troops into Balata r.c. and Tulkarm, fires on residential areas, then fires on stonethrowing youths who confront the troops; halts a Palestinian school bus at a Hebron checkpoint, detains 3 students; conducts arrest raids, house searches in ‘Arub r.c., Jenin r.c., and in villages around Nablus, Tulkarm; bulldozes 60 d. southwest of Hebron for construction of the separation wall. The UNRWA delivers food, water to half of the 600 Palestinian families (ca. 3,300 individuals) who have been trapped in their homes east of Jabaliya r.c., unable to leave and without electricity or water since Days of Penitence began on 9/29. (United Nations Information Service 10/7; PSCT, VOI, VOP 10/7 in WNC 10/11; MEZ, WP 10/8; PR 10/13; PCHR 10/14)

In Egypt, a huge truck bomb explodes at the Hilton hotel in Taba, 2 smaller bombs explode at hotels further south along the Red Sea in Nuwayba and Ras al-Shaytan in what appear to be al-Qa‘ida attacks targeting Israelis vacationing for the Sukkoth holidays; 34 people are killed (including at least 13 Israelis, 9 Egyptians, 2 Italians, 1 Russian), some 150 are wounded. (BBC, HA, NYT, WP, WT 10/8; ITAR-TASS, MA, MENA, MM, VOI, VOP 10/8, MENA, al-Quds 10/9, VOI 10/10 in WNC 10/12; NYT, WP, WT 10/9; NYT 10/10; al-Ra’i 10/10, AYM 10/11 in WNC 10/14; LBC 10/10, MM 10/11; VOP 10/11 in WNC 10/13; MM 10/12; MM, NYT, PR 10/13; JP, WJW 10/14; MM 10/15, 10/18, 10/19; WT 10/20; MEI 10/22; WP 10/26)

The IDF shells a house in Gaza’s Shatti r.c. in an attempt to assassinate PRC n. Gaza cmdr. ‘Abd al-Karim al-Quka, who, along with 4 Palestinians, is injured. The IDF also denies an ailing 60-yr.-old Palestinian passage through a checkpoint to a Nablus hospital, allowing him to die; continues bulldozing operations in Bayt Hanun, demolishing 2 PSF posts; demolishes 3 Palestinian homes, 26 shops, an olive oil factory in Barta nr. Jenin for construction of the separation wall, firing on stone-throwing Palestinians who confront the troops, injuring 6; fires on residential areas of Nablus; conducts arrest raids, house searches in villages around Jenin, Nablus, Ramallah and in Anata, Hebron. Palestinians fire 2 Qassam rockets into the Negev, causing no damage or injuries. An unknown assailant shoots, seriously wounds Executive Authority (EA) mbr. and fmr. information M Nabil ‘Amr twice in the leg in an attempted assassination, firing through a window at ‘Amr, inside his Ramallah home. ‘Amr, who has previously called for reforms in the PA, had just returned home from a TV interview in which he criticized Arafat’s performance. (BBC, WP 7/20; VOI 7/20 in WNC 7/22; MM, NYT, PR, REU, WT 7/21; JAZ 7/21 in WNC 7/23; CSM, PCHR, PM 7/22; DUS, HJ 7/23 in WNC 7/27; al-Ra’i 7/24 in WNC 7/29; VOP 7/29 in WNC 7/31; AYM 7/30 in WNC 8/3; MM 8/3; PR 8/4)

The IDF demolishes 3 brick factories, bulldozes agricultural land in continuing operations in Bayt Hanun; fires on residential areas of Rafah, Tulkarm r.c.; bulldozes 50 dunams of land nr. Jabaliya; conducts arrest raids nr. Tulkarm and in Araba, Qabatya. Armed PRC mbrs. ambush, kidnap Gaza police chief Ghazi Jabali, exchanging gunfire with this bodyguards, wounding 2; parade him through the streets of al-Bureij r.c., accusing him of stealing $22 m. in public funds; release him unharmed. Mbrs. of the Abu Rish Brigades (ARB; a Fatah offshoot) kidnap 4 French citizens, hold them hostage at a Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) office in Khan Yunis for several hrs., demanding that the PA fire corrupt security officials, before releasing them unharmed. Separately, ARB mbrs. kidnap Palestinian security official Khalid Abu al-Ula in Khan Yunis, free him by the end of the day. In the evening, Gaza’s PSF head Rashid Abu Shiblak, Gaza’s General Intelligence chief Amin al-Hindi resign, citing “the state of anarchy and chaos” in Gaza, the PA’s refusal to implement reforms, but Arafat refuses to accept their resignations. (NYT 7/16; VOI 7/16, HJ, VOI 7/17, AYM, HA, MA, al-Ra’i, YA 7/18, SA 7/19 in WNC 7/21; WP, NYT, WT 7/17; AYM 7/18, JP 7/20 in WNC 7/22; MM 7/19; DUS 7/19, AYM 7/20 in WNC 7/23; HA 7/20; NYT, PR 7/21; PCHR, WP 7/22; MEI 7/23; JPI 7/30; PR 8/4; AYM 8/6 in WNC 8/10)

The IDF raids a section of Gaza City nr. Netzarim settlement, occupies an abandoned house, shells a house (causing extensive damage but no injuries), bulldozes 20 dunams of land. The IDF also bulldozes 4 Palestinian homes, 2 “animal farms,” 45 dunams of land, an irrigation network in Khan Yunis; razes 10s of dunams of citrus trees nr. Bayt Lahia; conducts house searches, arrest raids in Jenin r.c., Qalqilya. A Palestinian fires on, tosses a grenade at an IDF post nr. Bayt Hanun (causing damage but no injuries), escapes. (VOI 7/9 in WNC 7/13; PCHR 7/15).

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) issues its nonbinding opinion on the separation wall, ruling (14-1, with only American judge Thomas Buerghenthal dissenting) that segments built on occupied Palestinian territory violate international law and should be removed or not built. (HA, JT, WP, WT 7/9; AYM, Interfax, ITAR-TASS, VOP 7/9, AN, DUS, HJ, MENA, al-Quds, al-Ra’i, VOP, XIN 7/10 in WNC 7/13; NYT, WP, WT 7/10; AYM 7/11, 7/13 in WNC 7/16; HJ 7/11, AN, JT, SA, VOP 7/12 in WNC 7/14; JTA, MM 7/12; Asia Times, MA, MM 7/13; al-Quds 7/13 in WNC 7/15; al-Ra’i 7/13 in WNC 7/21; PR 7/14; MEI 7/23)

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 fires rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas at Palestinians demonstrating against the separation wall nr. Biddu, wounding 12; blows up 2 Palestinian homes in Bethlehem, 1 in Nablus; conducts arrest raids in and around Bethlehem and in a-lArub r.c., East Jerusalem, Hebron, Jenin, Nablus; demolishes a PSF post, bulldozes 1.5 dunams of agricultural land nr. Dayr al-Balah. In Gaza City, 3,000 Palestinians demonstrate for the release of jailed Fatah tanzim leader Marwan Barghouti, other Palestinian prisoners. Jewish settlers attempting to rebuild the illegal outpost in Hebron removed on 4/13 scuffle with IDF troops; 2 settlers are injured. Late in the evening, the IDF begins sending troops into Rafah allegedly to search for smugglers’ tunnels, firing on residential areas. (HA 4/14; VOP 4 /14 in WNC 4/16; PCHR 4/15, 4/22)

Meanwhile in Washington, Bush meets with Sharon, formally endorses Sharon’s unilateral disengagement plan, marking a dramatic shift in U.S. policy toward the peace process (HA, MM, REU 4/14; JP, VOP 4/14 in WNC 4/16; al-Ra’i 4/14, AFP, DUS, THWR, TSHR, VOP, XIN 4 /15 in WNC 4/17; HA, JP, MM, NYT, REU, WP, WT 4/15; CSM, HA, FT, JT, MEI, MM 4/16; AFP, DUS, ITARTASS, MENA, NHR, al-Ra’i 4/16 in WNC 4/20; NHR 4/16 in WNC 4/27; WP 4/17; JTA 4/19; PR 4/21; MEI 4/30)

The IDF assassinates Hamas spiritual leader and founder Shaykh Ahmad Yasin, firing 3 internationally banned flechette missiles at him as he leaves a Gaza City mosque after morning prayers, also killing 3 bodyguards, 4 bystanders, wounding at least 17 Palestinians, including Yasin’s 2 sons. Immediately, 100,000s of Palestinians take to the streets throughout the territories to protest the assassination. The IDF seals Gaza; clashes with Palestinian demonstrators in Balata r.c. (killing an al-Najah Radio correspondent in Balata r.c., apparently thinking his mobile phone was a weapon), Bethlehem, Dayr al-Balah, Hebron (fatally shooting 1 Palestinian watching fr. his balcony), Jenin, Khan Yunis (killing 3 Palestinians), Nablus; fires on residential areas of Rafah, Qalqilya, Tal Zu’rub; imposes a curfew on areas around Jenin, fires on residential areas; temporarily occupies a Palestinian home as an IDF post nr. Dayr al-Balah. 100s of Palestinian youths in East Jerusalem gather at checkpoints to throw stones at IDF soldiers; Palestinian prisoners in 2 Israeli jails riot. Palestinians fire Qassam rockets, mortars, antitank rockets at Gush Katif and Netzarim settlements, nearby IDF posts, the western Negev, damaging 2 apartments in Netzarim but causing no injuries. An ax-wielding Palestinian fr. the West Bank village of Bidiyya wounds 3 Israelis outside an army base in Tel Aviv before being arrested. An unidentified assailant said to be Arab stabs, lightly wounds 3 Israelis on a Jaffa bus. 4 Palestinians are arrested for beating up a Jewish settler in East Jerusalem. Jewish settlers detain, beat a Palestinian man in the Jordan Valley. An estimated 200,000 Palestinians, including reps. of all Palestinian factions, take part in Yasin’s funeral services later in the day, with 21 PSF officers forming an honor guard for Yasin’s coffin, Gaza churches ringing their bells, mosques broadcasting Qur’anic verses. Meanwhile, Israeli defense chiefs meet, agree to target the entire remaining Hamas leadership immediately, without waiting for another Hamas attack. Israel also announces that it will close the only mental health clinic serving East Jerusalem Palestinians (1,200 patients) because of “security concerns.” (AP, BBC, CSM, HA, MA, MM, NYT, REU, WP, WT 3/22; AP, ATL, ITARTASS, MNR, MENA, IDF Radio, IRNA, ITARTASS, JP, VIRI, VOI, VOP, XIN 3/22 in WNC 3/24; al-Arabiyya TV [Dubai], Syrian Arab News Agency 3/22 in WNC 4/27; AFP, BBC, CSM, HA, JT, MM, NYT, WP, WT 3/23; AFP, AYM, DUS, HA, al-Hayat al-Jadida, JT, MA, MENA, al-Ra’i, THWR, TSHR, VIRI, YA 3/23 in WNC 3/25; MM, NYT, PR, WP 3/24; ATL, ITAR-TASS, Izvestiya, JT, al-Ra’i, SA, VOP, XIN 3/24 in WNC 3/26; AYM 3/24 in WNC 4/3; JT, MM, PCHR, WJW 3/25; ITAR-TASS, MENA, NHR, VIRI 3/25 in WNC 3/27; MM 3/26; MNR 3/27 in WNC 3/30; AYM 3/30, VOP 3/31 in WNC 4/2; MEI 4/2; PCHR 4/15)

In Washington, Shalom holds further talks on Sharon’s disengagement plan with VP Dick Cheney, Powell, Rice. (WP 3/23)

Despite Israel’s pledge (1/29) not to seal the occupied territories in the wake of the Jerusalem bombing, Israeli-Arabs seeking to enter Gaza with pre-arranged permits to celebrate Id al-Adha with relatives report that the IDF is blocking all entry to the Strip. The IDF assassinates senior Islamic Jihad mbr. Yasir Abu Aysh, firing missiles at his family’s home in Rafah, also killing Islamic Jihad mbr. Hussein Abu Aysh (Yasir’s brother), AMB Rafah leader Majdi Khatib, Hamas mbr. Baha’ Judah, wounding 3; Yasir Abu Aysh, who reportedly has been in hiding since he lost both legs and an arm in a mysterious explosion in 2002, had come out of seclusion to visit his family for Id al-Adha. The IDF also raids ‘Aida r.c. in search of Bethlehem Izzeddin al-Qassam Brigades head Muhammad Abu Odeh, who fires on IDF soldiers, wounding 4, before being shot dead; the IDF then blows up his familyhome. In Ramallah, 2–3 armed AMB mbrs. reportedly storm the offices of al-Dar newspaper and al-Quds TV, destroying equipment, computers, archives. (HA, NYT, WP, WT 2/3; JP 2/8 in WNC 2/10; Independent 2/9; PCHR 2/12)

Sharon says that he has given orders to plan for the “relocation” of 17 of 20 Jewish settlements in Gaza and 3 Jewish settlements in the West Bank over the next 2 yrs., with “the assumption that in the future there will be no Jews in Gaza.” (BBC, HA, MM 2/2; AP, MM, NYT, WP, WT 2/3; VOP 2/3 in WNC 2/5; NYT 2/4; WJW 2/5; JT, al-Ra’i 2/8 in WNC 2/10; AYM 2/8 in WNC 2/19; PR 2/11; CSM 2/12; JPI 2/13; AYM 2/17 in WNC 2/20; MEI 2/20) (see 11/23)

Unidentified Palestinians detonate a roadside bomb outside Erez crossing as a U.S. emb. convoy (carrying the cultural attache, en route to interview Fulbright scholarship candidates) passes, destroying 1 of 4 armored cars, killing 3 U.S. security officers, wounding 1 U.S. diplomat; the convoy passes along a route and at a time a CIA detail involved in monitoring road map progress usually passes through the area, despite mos. of warnings fr. the PA of the dangers of routine movements, conspicuous bodyguards. AMB, Hamas, Islamic Jihad, the Popular Resistance Comms. (PRC) deny responsibility, though a phone call to the press claims the attack on the PRCs’ behalf. After this 1st successful targeted attack against Americans by Palestinians, the U.S. for the 1st time discloses that in 6/03 a roadside bomb went off nr. a CIA vehicle in Gaza, causing damage but no injuries. Palestinians also detonate a smaller roadside bomb nr. an IDF convoy in Gaza, injuring 3 IDF soldiers. The IDF sends troops back into Brazil r.c., fatally shooting 1 Palestinian, searching and occupying homes, bulldozing land, demolishing a number of houses, shelling residential areas; arrests a Palestinian woman who attempts to stab a soldier at a Tulkarm checkpoint; conducts arrest raids in Bethlehem; fires on residential areas of Khan Yunis, Tulkarm; imposes a curfew on Nablus, escorts 100s of ultra-Orthodox Jews on a pilgrimage to Joseph’s Tomb. Israel orders another 3 West Bank Palestinian administrative detainees expelled to Gaza (see 10/14). An Israeli Arab dies of injuries received in the 10/4 Haifa bombing, bringing that toll to 21. (BBC, HA, MM, PR, PRCS 10/15; XIN 10/15, al-Ra’i 10/16 in WNC 10/18; AP, HA, MM, NYT, PCHR, WP, WT 10/16; MM, WP 10/17; AYM 10/18 in WNC 10/25; PR 10/22; WJW 10/23; JPI, MEI 10/24; JPI 10/31)

The IDF pulls most troops out of the Rafah area during the day, but reinvades al-Salam neighborhood after dark, shelling residential areas, razing land, demolishing homes. The IDF also raids a medical center outside Hebron, arrests a Palestinian waiting to be seen by doctors. (MM 10/13; WP 10/14; PCHR 10/16)

After several days of talks in Amman, a group of Palestinian, Israeli figures announce that after 2 yrs. of secret talks under the auspices of Switzerland, they have finalized an unofficial draft peace agmt., known as the Geneva Accord, as an alternative to the road map. (HA, JP, MM 10/13; AYM, al-Ra’i, XIN 10/13 in WNC 10/16; BBC, HA, MM, NYT, WP, WT 10/14; HA, MM, PR 10/15; MM 10/16, 10/17; MEI 10/24)

Israeli aircraft strike an alleged Islamic Jihad training camp deep inside Syria, just 10 mi. northwest of Damascus in ‘Ayn Sahib, injuring at least 1 security guard. Israel says the attack is in response to the 10/4 suicide bombing, in which it claims Syria played a “detailed role in orchestrating.” Syria denies this, denounces the strike as a “grave escalation,” says its response will be diplomatic. (The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine–General Command [PFLP-GC] says ‘Ayn Sahib is its fmr. training base, which is no longer active; says the site was patrolled by 1 civilian guard, who was injured.) The U.S. says that “we have repeatedly told the government of Syria that it is on the wrong side in the war on terror and that it must stop harboring terrorists.” Bush phones Sharon after the attack on Syria, expresses condolences on the 10/4 bombing, agrees with Sharon on “the need to continue fighting terrorism,” does not criticize Israel’s strike. (AFP, IDF Radio, MENA, VOI, XIN 10/5 in WNC 10/7; XIN 10/5, AN, ATL, DS, DUS, IRNA, JT, MENA, QA, al-Ra’i, THWR, TSHR, VIRI, XIN 10/6 in WNC 10/8; SATN 10/5 in WNC 11/8; MM, NYT, WP, WT 10/6; NHR 10/6, AN, IRNA, ITAR-TASS, SA, SFR, THWR, TSHR 10/7 in WNC 10/9; SFR 10/6, THWR, TSHR 10/8 in WNC 10/11; SANA, SARR, SATN 10/6, SANA, SATN 10/7 in WNC 11/11; MM 10/7; AFP, AYM, DUS, HA, ITARTASS, JT, MA, MENA, NHR, al-Quds, al-Ra’i, SFR, YA 10/7 in WNC 10/10; MM, PR 10/8; MM, WJW 10/9; MEI 10/10; PR 10/15; JPI 10/17; NHR 10/17 in NC 10/23)

Arafat declares a 30-day state of emergency in the occupied territories, issues a presidential decree appointing a 9-mbr. emergency cabinet, with Qurai‘, negotiating a regular cabinet since 9/10, as PM. The emergency cabinet is to serve for 1 mo. (VOP 10/5 in WNC 10/7; HA, MM, NYT, WP, WT 10/6; VOP 10/6 in WNC 10/8; WP 10/7; VOI, VOP 10/7 in WNC 10/9; AYM 10/7 in WNC 10/10; PR 10/8; PSCT 10/9 in WNC 10/11; MEI 10/10)

In the occupied territories, the IDF fires on Palestinians attempting to bypass a new checkpoint separating Rafah and Khan Yunis (imposed after the 10/4 bombing), killing 1 Palestinian, wounding 3; begins bulldozing Palestinian land nr. Morag settlement, 100 dunams nr. Hebron; demolishes 19 Palestinian homes in Rafah, 2 in Jenin (including the home of the 10/4 bomber’s family). (HA, NYT, WP 10/6; PCHR 10/7, 10/9)

A female Islamic Jihad suicide bomber detonates a device in a Haifa restaurant, killing 14 Israeli Jews, 5 Israeli Arabs, wounding around 50. (The bomber, Hanadi Taysir Jaradat, who had just graduated fr. law school in Jordan, watched as IDF undercover units assassinated her brother and cousin, both Islamic Jihad mbrs., outside their family home in Jenin on 6/12/03.) Israel says Arafat is to blame for failing to order the PSF to take steps to dismantle Islamic Jihad. Bush says the bombing “underscores once again the responsibility of the Palestinian authorities to fight terror,” says “the new Palestinian cabinet must dedicate itself to dismantling the infrastructure of terror,” does not call for Israeli restraint; Powell also phones Israeli FM Silvan Shalom to express condolences and strong condemnation of the attack, but does not urge restraint. In response, the IDF shells, demolishes an empty Palestinian home in Gaza City, and empty garage in Bureij r.c.; makes a failed assassination attempt on an Islamic Jihad mbr. in central Gaza, firing missiles at him in an open field, but missing him; moves troops into Jenin. Mbrs. of the Israeli peace group Gush Shalom, the International Solidarity Movement (ISM) surround Arafat’s Ramallah headquarters to act as human shields should Israel attempt to “remove” him. During the day, the IDF also raids Tulkarm r.c., assassinates AMB mbr. Sirhan Biharan Hassin Sirhan, whom Israel says killed 5 Israelis in Kibbutz Metzer on 11/10/02, also killing a 9-yr.-old Palestinian bystander; fires on residential areas of Rafah. A Palestinian toddler dies of injuries received on 10/2; a 2d Palestinian dies of injuries received in 2002. (GS, HA 10/4; AFP, MENA, VOP 10/4, AFP, IRNA, ITAR-TASS, al-Quds, VIRI, VOP, XIN 10/5 in WNC 10/7; NYT, WP, WT 10/5; MM, WP 10/6; al-Ra’i 10/6 in WNC 10/8; HA, MM, NYT 10/7; PR, WP 10/8; PCHR, WJW 10/9; MEI 10/10; MM 10/17)

An IDF warplane drops a 550-lb bomb on a Gaza City building in an attempt to assassinate Hamas founder and spiritual leader Shaykh Ahmad Yasin, several senior Hamas leaders meeting there, destroying the top floor of the 3-story building, lightly injuring Yasin, 14 others. Following the attack, the IDF tightens restrictions on Palestinian movement across the West Bank. The IDF also fatally shoots a Palestinian teenager suspected of attempting to infiltrate Israel nr. Jabaliya, initially wounding him in the leg, then denies access toan ambulance for 19 hrs., allowing him to bleed to death; fires on stone-throwing Palestinian children in Bayt Furik (wounding 2, ages 9, 10), Nablus (wounding 4); also fires on residential areas of Khan Yunis, Rafah; conducts arrest raids in Asira, Bayt Furik, Rafah. Wanted Hamas mbr. Massud dies of injuries received in an IDF assassination attempt on 8/26. (AFP 9/6; HA, NYT, WP, WT 9/7; IDF Radio, IRNA, MA, MENA, NHR, al-Quds, SA, VOI 9/7 in WNC 9/9; DUS, al-Quds 9/7, AN 9/8 in WNC 9/10; MM 9/8; QA, SFR 9/9 in WNC 9/12; PCHR 9/11; MEI 9/12)

With no PC vote of confidence forthcoming, Abbas resigns as PM, citing no way of reaching a workable security arrangement with Arafat, lack of support fr. the U.S., on going militarism and little diplomatic effort by Israel. (NYT 9/6; MENA, al-Quds, XIN 9/6, JP, JT, MA, MENA, XIN, YA 9/7 in WNC 9/9; HA, NYT, WP, WT 9/7; AN, DUS, al-Ra’i, 9/7, AN, AYM, ITAR-TASS, SA 9/8 in WNC 9/10; AYM 9/7, 9/9 in WNC 9/11; MM 9/9; Le Monde 9/9 in WNC 9/12; MM 9/10)

The IDF assassinates senior Hamas political leader and spokesman Ismail Abu Shanab, firing 5 missiles at his car as he drives through Gaza City, also killing 2 bodyguards, wounding at least 19 bystanders. Hamas, Islamic Jihad declare the cease-fire officially over. The IDF also imposes curfews on all Palestinian cities; continues operations in Nablus, where tanks and troops have entered the heart of the city, demolishing 1 Palestinian apartment, raiding and evacuating the staff of a medical clinic for 6 hrs.; sends 5 bulldozers, 100 special forces units into Nazlat Issa, nr. the Green Line, to demolish at least 7 Palestinian homes, 115 shops, 2 factories, several warehouses; demolishes 3 Palestinian homes in Jenin, 2 in Hebron (including the home of the 8/19 bomber); shells residential areas of Khan Yunis; conducts arrest raids in Qabatiyya. Palestinians fire 12 mortars at Gush Katif, 5 Qassam rockets at s. Israel, damaging 2 buildings but causing no injuries. The IDF arrests a Hebron settler for alleged membership in a Jewish militant group. (BBC, HA, MM, PCHR, PM 8/21; MA, MENA, al-Quds, VOI, XIN, YA 8/21 in WNC 8/23; XIN 8/21, AYM, JP, QA, al-Quds, al-Ra’i, SA 8/22, JT, al-Quds 8/24 in WNC 8/26; HA, MM, NYT, WP, WT 8/22; WT 8/23; PR 8/27; PCHR 8/28; MEI 9/12)

A Palestinian suicide bomber fr. Hebron detonates a device on a bus in West Jerusalem, killing 15 Israelis, 5 Americans, wounding more than 100 (13 seriously, 13 moderately), and violating a unilateral 3-mo. Palestinian cease-fire declared on 6/29. (Initially, Islamic Jihad claims responsibility, and Hamas denies it. After the bomber is identified as a known Hamas mbr., Hamas accepts responsibility but says it still adheres tothe cease-fire, this was a 1-time action to retaliate for the 8/14 IDF assassination of Islamic Jihad Hebron cmdr. Muhammad Sidr. Analysts suggest the bombing may be a joint operation or the work of a Hamas offshoot.) PA PM Mahmud Abbas, whois meeting with Islamic Jihad leaders at the time tourge them toextend the cease-fire to 6 mos., breaks off the mtg., denounces the attack, cancels cease-fire talks with Hamas scheduled for 8/20. Israel suspends further talks on a transfer of territory to PA control. The IDF sends tanks, troops into Hebron, surrounding villages to conduct searches, arrest raids; demolishes 4 Palestinian homes in Jabal Mukabir in East Jerusalem; fires on residential areas of Khan Yunis. Israeli authorities demolish an Israeli Arab home in Lod, the 40th to be demolished in 2003; the Prime Minister’s Office reports that Israel has also demolished 117 bedouin homes in the Negev this yr. In Nablus, a shootout btwn. rival AMB factions fr. Nablus, Balata r.c. leaves 1 AMB mbr. dead. (HA, JP, MM 8/19; MENA 8/19 in WNC 8/21; HA, MM, NYT, WP, WT 8/20; IDF Radio, Interfax, ITAR-TASS, JP, MA, MENA, VOI, YA 8/20 in WNC 8/22; MM, PCHR, WJW 8/21; QA, al-Quds 8/21 in WNC 8/23; al-Ra’i 8/21, AYM, al-Ra’i 8/22 in WNC 8/26; JPI 8/22; JPI, MM 8/29)

The IDF conducts arrest raids in al-Bireh, Ramallah. (PM 6/30; PCHR 7/3)

Fatah, Hamas, Islamic Jihad formally announce cease-fires against all Israelis everywhere for a minimum of 3 mos. The DFLP, Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) say they will abide by the truce. Hrs. after the announcement, the IDF begins redeploying fr. Bayt Hanun. (AYM 6/29, AYM, al-Quds, SFR 6/30, AFP, MENA, QA, al-Ra’i 7/1, AYM, MENA, NHR, SFR 7/2, AYM, HA, SFR 7/3, MA 7/4 in WNC 7/10; HA, MM, NYT, WP, WT 6/30; PR 7/2; AYM 7/5 in WNC 7/11; MEI 7/11)

The IDF assassinates senior Hamas mbr. Abdallah Qawasmi, ambushing and shooting at his car as he drives through Hebron; Israel claims Qawasmi plotted the 6/11 Jerusalem bus bombing; Sharon calls the killing a “successful and very important act.” The IDF also bulldozes a Palestinian home, a poultry farm, 3 dunams of land nr. Dayr al-Balah. A Palestinian dies of injuries received during the IDF assassination of Lidawi on 6/13, bringing that toll to 1. (NYT, WP, WT 6/22; VOI 6/22 in WNC 6/24; MM, WP 6/23; AYM 6/23, al-Ra’i 6/24 in WNC 6/26; PR 6/25; PCHR 6/26; MEI 6/27)

The IDF demolishes 4 Palestinian homes in Rafah, 3 in Yatta; conducts arrest raids in Jenin. In Jerusalem, some 20,000 Jewish settlers demonstrate against the Aqaba summit. Palestinians fire a mortar at a Jewish settlement, a rocket at an IDF post, both in Gaza, causing no damage or injuries. In a move deliberately timed with the Aqaba summit, Tourism M Benny Elon begins work to set up offices of the pro-transfer Moledet party in 1 of the 2 Palestinian homes next to the U.S. consulate in East Jerusalem’s Shaykh Jarrah neighborhood that Jewish settlers have been trying to seize for 1 yr. (see 4/27/03). (JP 6/4 in WNC 6/7; HA, MM, NYT, PCHR, WP, WT 6/5; PCHR 6/12; PR 6/25)

In Aqaba, Bush meets with Abbas, Sharon, King Abdallah; then meets with Abbas, Sharon only. Afterward, Abbas and Sharon each give carefully worded statements reiterating their commitments to peace. (HA, MM 6/4; Interfax, ITAR-TASS, JT, MENA, QA, SA 6/4 in WNC 6/7; HA, MM, NYT, WP, WT 6/5; DUS, JP, JT, MA, MENA, NHR, QA, al-Quds, al-Ra’i, SA, SFR, Star, YA 6/5 in WNC 6/8; al-Quds 6/5, DUS 6/6 in WNC 6/10; MM 6/6; THWR , TSHR 6/7 in WNC 7/11; JPI 6/13; PR 6/18; JPI 6/20)

The IDF raids a building in Jenin r.c., killing local AMB cmdr. Yusif Masharqa, 4 Islamic Jihad mbrs. in what may be an assassination; fatally shoots a stone-throwing Palestinian in Azun; conducts arrest raids in Hebron, Rafah; fires on residential areas of Rafah; bulldozes 8 dunams of land in Khan Yunis. A Palestinian gunman fires on a car traveling a bypass road nr. Adora, lightly wounding 1 Jewish settler (HA, MM 3/14; HA, NYT 3/15; al-Quds 3/15 in WNC 3/17; PCHR 3/20)

Bush says he will not release the road map until the PA appoints a “credible” Palestinian PM in a “position of real authority.” (HA 3/14; XIN 3/14, MENA, al-Quds, XIN 3/15, JT, MA, SA 3/16 in WNC 3/17; al-Ra’i 3/15 in WNC 3/18; HA, NYT, WP, WT 3/15; NYT 3/16; MM 3/17; AYM 3/17 in WNC 3/19; MM 3/18; AYM 3/18 in WNC 3/20; PR 3/19; WJW 3/20; MEI 3/21; NYT 3/23) (see 3/8)

After a wk. of outrage over his comments on Jewish political leverage (see 3/10), Rep. Moran gives up his House leadership post as mid-Atlantic regional whip for the Democratic Caucus, apologizing for his “insensitive” remarks. The American Jewish Comm. says his resignation is “a step in the right direction.” (WP 3/15; WP 3/16; WJW 3/20)

The IDF says that in the past 24 hrs., it has killed 6 Palestinians attempting attacks on Israeli targets, including 2 Palestinians swimming toward the Gaza settlement of Dugit, carrying grenades and guns. In addition, 3 Palestinians are killed in a mysterious explosion nr. Rafah; 2 Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP) mbrs. are fatally shot by the IDF when they open fire on an army base at Yitzhar settlement, injuring 4 IDF soldiers. The IDF raids Halhul, looking for the 2d gunman involved in the 6/7 attack nr. Karmei Tsur. (NYT, WP, WT 6/9; MEI 6/14)

After a 2d round of talks with Mubarak at Camp David, Bush announces that the U.S. is "not ready to lay down a specific calendar" for political talks leading to a Palestinian state, the most urgent issue is PA reform. (NYT, WP, WT 6/9; MENA 6/9 in WNC 6/10; MM 6/10; MENA 6/10 in WNC 6/11; JPI, MEI 6/14; al-Ra'i 7/15 in WNC 7/17)

A suicide bomber detonates a device in an unlicensed gambling club in the Rishon Letzion suburb of Tel Aviv, killing 15 Israelis, injuring 57. Hamas's military wing claims responsibility, but the political wing will not confirm. The IDF conducts arrest raids in Tulkarm city, detaining about 40 Palestinians; bulldozes a Palestinian home, fatally shoots a Palestinian boy in Rafah; begins work on Jewish settler bypass roads nr. Khan Yunis, nr. Nablus. In Bethlehem, the siege of the Church of the Nativity continues, with Italy complaining it has not been consulted on the 5/6 agmt. (AFP, AP, CNN, MM 5/7; AFP, ANSA, XIN 5/7 in WNC 5/8; al-Quds 5/7 in WNC 5/9; MM, NYT, WP, WT 5/8; MA, RNE 5/8 in WNC 5/9; MM, WJW 5/9; al-Ra'i 5/9 in WNC 5/10; MM 5/10; AYM 5/12 in WNC 5/15; JP 5/16; MEI 5/17; HA 5/24)

The IDF announces plans to divide the West Bank into 8 isolated zones (Bethlehem, Hebron, Jericho, Jenin, Nablus, Qalqilya, Ramallah, Tulkarm); to impose severe new restrictions on the movement of Palestinians, goods btwn. zones. (UNRWA press release 5/14; al-Quds 5/16 in WNC 5/17; HA, JT [Internet] 5/17; HA 5/18; AYM 5/28 in WNC 5/20; PMC 5/19; HA 5/22; NYT 5/24)

In Washington, Sharon, Bush hold talks on PA reform, barely touch on the idea of a peace conference. They agree that the priority should be halting Palestinian violence, restructuring the PA, unifying the PA security services. Sharon also says that it is "premature" to discuss a Palestinian state, Israel will never agree to withdraw to 1967 lines; suggests Israel will not resume political talks until Arafat has been removed fr. power. Bush say he will send CIA dir. Tenet to the region to help rebuild the PA security forces. Sharon returns to Israel in light of the Rishon Letzion bombing. (AP, CNN, MM 5/7; MENA, al-Quds 5/7 in WNC 5/8; AYM 5/7, MA 5/8 in WNC 5/9; HA, JP [Internet], MM, NYT, WP, WT 5/8; MM, WJW, WP 5/9; QA, al-Ra'i 5/9 in WNC 5/10; MM 5/10; AYM 5/10 in WNC 5/13; JP [Internet] 5/10; JP 5/16)