Thursday, September 19, 2002

A Hamas suicide bomber detonates a device on a bus in Tel Aviv, killing 5 Israelis, injuring more than 50. Sharon convenes his cabinet, which unanimously decides to launch Operation Matter of Time to "isolate” Arafat, calls for the immediate extradition of around 20 wanted Palestinians (including Force 17 head Mahmud Damara, PA General Intelligence chief Tawfiq Tirawi) allegedly among the 200 Palestinians hiding in Arafat's offices (8 surrender in the evening). The IDF immediately reimposes 24-hr. curfews on all West Bank areas except Hebron; sends tanks into Ramallah to surround Arafat's offices (1 tank fatally shoots a 10-yr.-old Palestinian boy 6 times; troops shoot, wound 2 Arafat bodyguards in the PA headquarters compound); fires on "Palestinian schoolchildren challenging the army's attempt to impose a curfew" in Amari r.c., killing a 11-yr.-old Palestinian; shells residential areas of Rafah; conducts arrest raids in Bayt Hanun (where an IDF tank runs over a roadside bomb, injuring 2 soldiers), Jenin r.c. (blowing up 1 Palestinian home), Nablus, Qalqilya, the Tulkarm area; bulldozes 19 dunams of agricultural land nr. Kefar Darom settlement. Jewish settlers open fire on a Palestinian taxi nr. Tulkarm, seriously injuring the driver. (AP, HA, JTA, LAW, MM, PM 9/19; ATL, ITAR-TASS 9/19 in WNC 9/20; MM, NYT, WP, WT 9/20; Interfax, MA, Radio Monte Carlo 9/20 in WNC 9/23; MEZ, NYT 9/21; AYM 9/23 in WNC 9/25; LAW, PCHR, PR 9/25; MA 9/25 in WNC 9/26; WJW 9/26; MEI 9/27)