Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Overnight and during the day, the IDF sends additional troops into Gaza’s coastal area nr. al-Khuza, sparking clashes with AMB and Hamas gunmen, fatally shooting 3 Hamas mbrs., wounding 2 armed Palestinians, 2 civilians (including a 12-yr.-old boy), bulldozing areas of agricultural land, destroying electricity, water, phone networks in the area. Also in Gaza, the IDF fires on residential areas of al-Shuka, wounding 1 Palestinian; makes an air strike destroying a workshop in Gaza City. In the West Bank, the IDF sends undercover units in a car with Palestinian plates into Jenin r.c. to arrest a wanted Islamic Jihad mbr.; conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Jenin and Nablus, in Hebron. (WP 11/1; OCHA 11/1; PCHR 11/2)

Hizballah leader Hasan Nasrallah says that he will rally large public demonstrations if Lebanese PM Fuad Siniora’s government does not agree to form a new unity government giving Hizballah control of 30% of the 24 cabinet seats, giving Hizballah veto power over any major government decision. (Hizballah made the demands after 2 national polls suggested that a unity government would have the support of about 70% of the population.) Nasrallah also says that “serious negotiations” are under way for the release of 2 captured IDF soldiers. (WP, WT 11/2)