Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The IDF kills 3 Hamas mbrs. laying a roadside bomb nr. the Gaza border, marking the deadliest day in Gaza since the truce expired on 12/19. Palestinians fire 2 rockets, 1 mortar fr. Gaza into Israel, causing no damage or injuries. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts near simultaneous late-night house searches in 4 villages nr. Hebron, making no arrests. Israel’s Homefront Command begins several days of exercises in Israel simulating responses to Hamas rocket fire. Participating in the exercises for the first time are Ashdod, Ashqelon, Kiryat Gat, and Kiryat Malachi, on the assumption that Hamas now has rockets that can hit that far north. (MM 12/23; PCHR, WP 12/24; PCHR 1/1)

In Ankara, Israeli and Syrian teams hold their 5th round of indirect peace talks mediated by Turkey. (MM 12/22; al-Watan, MM 12/23)