Sunday, 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 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 training base, which is no longer active; says the site was patrolled by 1 civilian guard, who was injured.)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)