Tuesday, August 23, 2005

The IDF completes the settler disengagement in the West Bank with the evacuation of Homesh (est. 1980, pop. 228, hrs. to evac. 7) and Sanur (est. 1982, pop. 105, hrs. to evac. 8), permitting the IDF to withdraw fr. its military positions in the 4 West Bank settlements and in Gaza over the next 2–5 wks. Most residents of the 2 settlements left before disengagement began; those who had remained generally go willingly, but some 2,000 disengagement protesters at the two sites put up mild resistance against some 12,000 soldiers, with 1 female protester in Homesh stabbing, lightly injuring a female soldier. IDF dismantlement of settler homes is underway in 13 of the 25 evacuated settlements; some protesters manage to infiltrate cleared settlements, but the IDF removes them again. Elsewhere in the West Bank, the IDF conducts house searches, interrogations in Hebron (occupying a school as an observation post) and around Jenin; fires on residential areas nr. Jenin; bulldozes several tents, animal pens set up by bedouin in an IDF “training zone” nr. Bethlehem. Jewish settlers fr. Keddumim severely beat a Palestinian nr. Qalqilya. (BBC, HA, IMEMC 8/23; NYT, WP, WT 8/24; PCHR, PR 8/25; MEI 9/2)