Monday, February 4, 2008

In Dimona in s. Israel, a Palestinian suicide bomber detonates a device in a mall, killing 1 Israeli, wounding 11; an off-duty Israeli policeman identifies, fatally shoots a 2d bomber who allegedly planned to set off a 2d device as rescue workers gathered. (For discussion of the dispute over the bombers’ identities, see Quarterly Update.) At the Rafah crossing, Egyptian border police try to block about 700 Egyptians and Palestinians attempting to cross the border in both directions; travelers throw stones at policemen who respond with tear gas and by firing in the air; as the riot escalates, Hamas mbrs. inside Gaza apparently fire on the Egyptian troops to force a retreat, wounding around 20. In Gaza, the IDF makes an air strike on Bayt Lahiya, assassinating PRC mbr. ‘Amr Qarmout, wounding 1 bystander. Jewish settlers fr. Ramat Yishai in Hebron throw stones, empty bottles at a Palestinian father and his 12-yr.-old son, moderately injuring them. Jewish settlers fr. Havat Gilad outpost nr. Qalqilya uproot 200 Palestinian olive trees in nearby Jit. (HA, IFM, JAZ, REU 2/4; OCHA 2/6; PCHR 2/7)