Wednesday, August 2, 2006

In Gaza, the IDF shells residential areas of al-Shuka, wounding 3 Palestinians (ages 4, 6, 65), cutting electricity to parts of Rafah. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in, fires on residential areas of Jenin town and r.c.; conducts arrest raids, house searches nr. Hebron and in al-Bireh, Qalqilya. A PSF officer is fatally shot by unknown Palestinian gunmen in Khan Yunis. (WP 8/2; PCHR 8/3; OCHA 8/9; PCHR 8/10)

Overnight, the 48-hr. easing of Israeli air strikes in s. Lebanon passes. IDF steps up ground operations, clashing with Hizballah mbrs. in 11 towns across s. Lebanon concentrated within 2–4 mi. of the border, leaving 1 IDF soldier dead and 9 wounded, mostly in Aita al-Sha‘b. The IDF also lands troops in Baalbek for a 2d day, where they clash with Hizballah, reportedly killing 10 Hizballah mbrs. and 25 Lebanese civilians, capturing 5 Hizballah mbrs. IDF air strikes across Lebanon also escalate, including targeting Lebanese army bases in Sarba (killing 1 Lebanese soldier) and nr. Sidon (killing 3 Lebanese soldiers). Hizballah fires some 230 rockets into Israel, killing 1 Israeli civilian, wounding at least 33, hitting sites in Kibbutz Saar, Ma’alot, Nahariya; a Khaybar-1 rocket lands outside Jenin, 43 mi fr. the border, causing no damage or injuries. (AP 8/2; NYT, WP, WT 8/3)