Monday, February 26, 2001

Israeli-Palestinian clashes continue, leaving 1 Palestinian dead. A 2d, ailing Palestinian dies at an IDF checkpoint that she was barred fr. crossing to reach a hospital in Nablus. Palestinians detonate 2 roadside bombs nr. IDF convoys in Gaza, wounding 1 soldier. The IDF shells residential areas nr. Bayt Hanun; bulldozes Palestinian land nr. Khan Yunis, Netzarim Junction, Shaykh Ajlin. YESHA settlers council call on the government to assassinate or expel Arafat. (HP 2/26; NYT, WT 2/27; WT 2/28; WJW 3/1; AYM 3/3 in WNC 3/8; MEI 3/9)

The Labor party central comm. votes (67% to 32%, with more than half of the 1,675 mbrs. not voting) to join a unity government led by Likud's Sharon. Likud says it offered Labor 8 cabinet posts (including DM, FM), equal say in determining security and diplomatic policy. (MM 2/26; HA, MM, NYT, WP, WT 2/27; HA, MM 2/28; al-Ra'i 2/28 in WNC 3/2; MEI 3/9)

U.S. Secy. of State Powell stops in Saudi Arabia, then heads to Damascus to meet Pres. Hafiz al-Asad, who agrees to funnel Iraq's revenues oil transported through Syria's pipeline to the UN oil-for-food program. (MM 2/26; NYT, WP, WT 2/27; MM 2/28; SA 3/4 in WNC 3/5; MEI 3/9; JT 3/9 in WNC 3/11)

The State Dept.'s annual human rights report criticizes Israel for using "excessive force," committing "numerous serious human rights abuses" against Palestinians; faults PA forces for participating in, or at least failing to prevent, violence. (NYT, WP 2/26; WT 2/28; AYM 2/28 in WNC 3/5; WJW 3/1; MM 3/14)