Friday, May 18, 2001

In Netanya, Israel, a Hamas suicide bomber kills 5 Israelis, injures 110. After dark, Israel sends F-16s to drop 1,100-lb. bombs on PA security targets in Gaza City, Nablus, Ramallah, and Tulkarm, killing 12 Palestinians, wounding 90--marking Israel's 1st use of warplanes against the Palestinian areas since the 1967 war. (Sharon makes the decision to use F-16s in a mtg. with FM Shimon Peres and DM Benjamin Ben-Eliezer; he has not met with his security cabinet in 3 wks.) An IDF officer is also killed when his car is ambushed in the West Bank. Britain, European Union (EU), Russia, the UN, the U.S. condemn the sharp escalation; urge PA, Israeli leaders to bring violence to a halt. (AP, BBC, HA, JP [Internet], MM, REU 5/18; AFP, Interfax 5/18, al-Quds 5/19, JT, MA, RMC 5/20 in WNC 5/21; LAW, PCHR, NYT, WP, WT 5/19; QA 5/19, El Pais (Madrid) 5/22 in WNC 5/23; HP, NYT, WT 5/20; al-Ra'i 5/20, MA 5/21 in WNC 5/22; MM 5/21 PCHR 5/24; LAW 5/25; MEI 6/1)

The UN Security Council (UNSC) accepts UN Secy.-Gen. Kofi Annan's 5/2 proposal for a staged reduction of UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) troops. (UN press release 5/18)