Thursday, December 8, 2011

The IDF carries out an air strike on a car in a crowded section of Gaza City, assassinating senior al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade (AMB) mbr. Issam al-Batash and his nephew Subhi al-Batash, a mbr. of Hamas’s armed wing, the Izzeddin al-Qassam Brigades (IQB), wounding 4–6 bystanders; Israel claims the 2 men planned to infiltrate Israel and that Issam al-Batash was involved in plotting an AMB–Islamic Jihad suicide bombing in Elat on 1/29/07. Overnight, in the West Bank, the IDF conducts arrest raids targeting the PFLP in Hebron, arresting 3; the IDF spokesman states that 9 other PFLP mbrs. are arrested in raids in Bethlehem, Jenin, and Qalqilya, but there is no corroboration. During the day, the IDF confiscates 150 d. of Palestinian agricultural land nr. the Gush Etzion settlement bloc nr. Bethlehem. Late at night, the IDF patrols in 2 villages nr. Qalqilya, 1 each nr. Jenin and Salfit. (AP, HA, IDFS, MNA 12/8; JP, NYT, WP 12/9; PCHR 12/15; OCHA 12/16)