Sunday, October 29, 2000

With Israeli-Palestinian clashes showing no sign of abating, IDF chief of staff Gen. Shaul Mofaz announces that the army will begin initiating attacks on Palestinian targets, especially Fatah leaders, and using more force against demonstrators. During the day, 5 Palestinians are killed, over 100 injured; a 6th Palestinian dies of injuries received earlier. Nr. Qarni crossing in Gaza, IDF tanks fire on Palestinian demonstrators, killing 2, wounding 25. Also in Gaza, Palestinian gunmen fire on and detonate a small bomb nr. a bus carrying Jewish settlers under IDF escort, causing no injuries. In drive-by shooting in East Jerusalem, Jewish settlers wound a Palestinian security guard outside Agusta Victoria hospital. Armed settlers also open fire on Palestinians in Haris, wounding 3. Other hot spots are nr. Jinin, Nablus, Ramallah. Nr. Ariel settlement, the IDF bulldozes Palestinian olive groves. (MM, NYT, WP, WT 10/30; AYM 10/30 in WNC 11/1; NYT, WP 10/31; AIC 11/2; al-Quds 11/9 in WNC 11/13)

A day before the Knesset reconvenes, Barak and Sharon are still unable to reach an agmt. on forming a unity government despite 7 days of talks. The Shas party, which pulled out of Barak's coalition in 7/00, before the Camp David talks, says it will give Barak a 1-mo. safety net against no-confidence votes. In return, Barak suspends plans for secular social reforms (see 8/20). (MM, NYT, WT, YA 10/30; MM, WT 10/31; MM 11/1; WJW 11/2; MEI 11/10)