Thursday, November 4, 2004

The Israeli security cabinet, IDF senior cmdrs., Fatah Central Comm., PLO Exec. Comm. hold emergency mtgs. to discuss Arafat’s failing health, after he reportedly slips into a “reversible coma.” The PLO Exec. Comm. grants PA PM Ahmad Qurai‘ temporary responsibility for urgent matters involving the PA security services and finances. Hamas calls for formation of a collective leadership, in which it would participate, to rule until elections are held. The IDF places troops in the West Bank and Gaza on alert, fearing an upswing in violence if Arafat dies; the PA does the same with its security forces. The IDF also demolishes 4 Palestinian homes in Rafah; fires on residential areas of al-Brazil r.c.; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Nablus, nr Hebron. (AFP, BBC, HA, REU, WP, XIN 11/4; AFP, JAZ, MENA, VOI, VOP, XIN 11/4 in WNC 11/6; BBC, CSM, HA, MM, NYT, WP, WT 11/5; VOP, XIN 11/5 in WNC 11/9; PRCS 11/11)