Sunday, March 13, 2005

The IDF fires on 3 Palestinians attempting to sneak into Israel fr. Jabaliya to find work, seriously wounding 1, lightly injuring 1, while 1 escapes; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Baqa‘ al-Sharqiyya. The IDF also imposes new restrictions on Palestinian movement nr. the Ibrahimi Mosque/Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron, erecting an iron gate 30 m away fr. the site, closing the main road leading to the site to Palestinians, checking all Palestinians before allowing them through the gate to the site. Jewish settlers fr. Ma’on attack 5 Palestinian shepherds grazing their animals nearby; the IDF intervenes, arrests the Palestinians, takes them to Kiryat Arba for interrogation, releases them later. Israel authorizes the construction of a “temporary wall” btwn. Jerusalem, the West Bank in areas where the legal disputes to the route of the separation wall are still underway; approves a new route for the separation wall around Jerusalem that would annex Ma’ale Adumim settlement, surround Shu‘fat r.c. with fences, isolate Palestinian neighborhoods and villages n. of the city, incorporate Bilal Bin Rabah mosque n. of Bethlehem into Jerusalem. At Hebron University, 100s of students supporting Fatah disrupt a Hamas student rally in advance of campus elections, leaving 9 Palestinians injured. (AP, IMEMC 3/13; WT 3/14; OCHA 3/16; PCHR 3/17)