Tuesday, June 7, 2005

The IDF raids Qabatya nr. Jenin to arrest wanted Islamic Jihad cmdr. Marawa Khalil (also reported as Murwa Kamil), exchanges gunfire with him, attracting a mob of stone-throwing Palestinians; in the ensuing 90-min. clashes, Khalil and an unarmed Palestinian bystander are fatally shot, 9 Palestinians (including at least 3 bystanders) and 1 IDF soldier are wounded, Khalil’s house is demolished; 100s of Palestinians later march in Jenin, protesting the IDF operation and calling for revenge. In retaliation for the raid, Islamic Jihad fires mortars at Gaza’s Ganei Tal settlement, hitting a greenhouse and killing 2 Palestinian and 1 Chinese laborer, wounding 5 Palestinians. In further response to 6/6 events in Jerusalem, Hamas fires 3 Qassam rockets at Sederot and several mortars at Gaza settlements, causing light damage, no injuries; Israeli FM Silvan Shalom blames Hamas for “trying very hard to undermine our efforts to move toward peace with the Palestinian Authority.” The IDF also fatally shoots an Arab (identity unknown, carrying Egyptian bank notes) who tries to scale the Rafah border fence; fires a missile at Palestinian resistance mbrs. in Bayt Hanun, causing no damage or injuries; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Hebron. (PRCS 6/7; MENA, VOP, XIN 6/7 in WNC 6/8; NYT, OCHA, PR, WP, WT 6/8; VOP, XIN 6/8 in WNC 6/9; PCHR 6/9; al-Ahram 6/10; PR 6/15)