Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Israel deports to the Gaza Strip 2 Gazans found living illegally in Beersheba; the IDF sends them through the Israeli side of the Erez crossing but the men refuse to move through to the 150-m transit area to the Palestinian side, demanding they be allowed to return to Israel; IDF troops fire warning shots at them for more than 2 hrs. before forcing them to enter Gaza. Israeli naval vessels fire on Palestinian fishing boats off the Bayt Lahiya coast, forcing them to return to shore. The UN reports that since 4/28, 1 Palestinian has been killed in a tunnel collapse and 4 Palestinians have been killed and 9 injured when they were overcome by gas fumes while smuggling fuel through a tunnel. In the West Bank, the IDF demolishes 1 Palestinian home nr. the separation wall southwest of Bethlehem, leaving 8 Palestinians homeless; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Nablus. Jewish settlers set a fire destroying a mosque in Luban al-Sharqiyya nr. Nablus, an act Abbas says may jeopardize proximity talks. Jewish settlers also set fire to a Palestinian olive grove outside Hawara. The attacks are thought to be in response to the IDF demolition of structures in Shavei Shomron settlement on 5/2—part of the settlers price-tag doctrine to retaliate against Palestinians (and occasionally the IDF) in reaction to any attempt to curb settlement activity. (NYT, WP 5/5; OCHA, PCHR 5/6)