Wednesday, August 9, 2006

In Gaza, the IDF closes the Nahal Oz pipeline, Qarni crossing for the day; makes an air strike on a group of PRC mbrs. n. of Gaza City, killing 2 PRC mbrs., a 3- yr.-old girl in a house nearby, wounding 2 PRC mbrs.; makes air strikes destroying the home of an Islamic Jihad mbr. in Bayt Hanun, a 2d home elsewhere in Gaza (warning residents to leave beforehand). A Palestinian is killed in Jabaliya r.c. when he accidentally detonates unexploded IDF ordnance. In the West Bank, the IDF also makes air strikes on a house in Jenin r.c., assassinating Islamic Jihad mbrs. Amjad al-‘Ajami, Muhammad Atik, wounding 12 bystanders (including 7 children); conducts arrest raids, house searches in and around Hebron and Jenin, in Nablus, nr. Tulkarm (targeting PA security force mbrs.). (BBC, REU 8/9; PCHR 8/10; OCHA 8/16; PCHR 8/17)

The Israeli security cabinet approves plans to expand ground operations in s. Lebanon, speed IDF deployment to the Litani River. The IDF immediately begins reinforcing troops on the n. Israel border (anticipating a build-up of as many as 5,000 troops) and moves an additional 1,000 troops into s. Lebanon. The IDF continues air, naval, and artillery strikes across Lebanon, shelling ‘Ayn al-Hilwa r.c. (allegedly targeting the home of a Hizballah mbr., killing at least 2 persons, wounding 5), making an air strike on an apartment in Mashghara in the Biqa‘ Valley just n. of the Litani (killing a Hizballah official, 8 family mbrs.), hitting targets in s. Beirut. Ground operations also continue in s. Lebanon, with heavy clashes reported in Aita al-Sha‘b (4 IDF soldiers killed), Bint Jubayl, Dibil (9 IDF soldiers killed), Labuna, Jibbayn, al-Khiyam, Marja’uyun (1 IDF solider killed), Qantara, Taybeh, resulting in Israel’s highest daily toll to date, with 15 IDF soldiers dead and 38 wounded; the IDF claims to have killed 40 Hizballah mbrs. Hizballah fires some 170 rockets into n. Israel, hitting targets in Acre, Kiryat Shimona, Ma’alot, Safad. (BBC, HA, IFM, NYT, WP 8/9; NYT, WP, WT 8/10)