Chronology 16 August-15 November 2004

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VOL. 34

2004/05

No. 2
P. 217
Chronology
Chronology 16 August-15 November 2004
ABSTRACT

16 AUGUST-15 NOVEMBER 2004
COMPILED BY MICHELE K. ESPOSITO

16 AUGUST
The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) fires missiles at 4 Palestinians allegedly preparing to fire a Qassam rocket fr. Bayt Hanun into Israel, killing 2; continues large-scale operations (dubbed Operation Full Court Press) in Nablus that began on 8/7, imposing a curfew, fatally shooting a Palestinian standing on his roof, firing on stone-throwing Palestinians who confront the troops; blows up 3 residential buildings housing 13 Palestinian families (76 individuals) in Rafah; fires on residential areas of Brazil refugee camp (r.c.), Khan Yunis, Rafah; bulldozes 2 wells, a commercial building in Bayt Hanun; conducts arrest raids, house searches in villages outside Hebron, Jenin, Ramallah. Late in the evening, the IDF sends troops into Bayt Hanun, orders Palestinians to evacuate several homes nr. Erez Crossing, searches and digs around homes for several hrs. looking for tunnels. Islamic Jihad fires 2 mortars at Gaza's Gush Katif settlement as a solidarity gesture with the Palestinian prisoners (on hunger strike since 8/15), causing no damage or injuries. A Palestinian dies of injuries received earlier. (AP 8/16; PRCS press release, WP, WT 8/17; PR 8/18; PCHR 8/19)
17 AUGUST
The IDF continues operations in Nablus, conducting house searches, firing on stone-throwing youths, fatally shooting a 9-yr.-old Palestinian sitting on the stoop of his home. The IDF also fatally shoots 2 al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade (AMB) mbrs. laying a roadside bomb outside Gaza's Atzmona settlement; demolishes 3 Palestinian homes in Brazil r.c.; directs heavy machinegun fire at residential areas of Rafah; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Dahaysha r.c. nr. Bethlehem and nr. Khan Yunis, Qalqilya, Ramallah; raids the offices of the National Society in Dahaysha r.c., arresting 3 employees, confiscating computers, sparking clashes with local Palestinians, wounding 5. The Israeli Housing Min. issues tenders for construction of 1,001 new housing units in 4 Jewish settlements (Ariel, 214; Beitar Ilit, 604; Karnei Shomron, 42; Ma'ale Adumim, 141). (HA, MM 8/17; VOP 8/17 in WNC 8/19; MM, NYT, PCHR, PR, WP, WT 8/18; PCHR, WJW 8/19; MM 8/20, 8/23; MEI 8/27)
18 AUGUST
The IDF launches a predawn air strike on the home of wanted Hamas mbr. Ahmad Jabari in Gaza City, assassinating 2 Hamas mbrs. and 1 Islamic Jihad mbr. (all relatives of Jabari), killing 2 bystanders, wounding 7; Jabari is moderately wounded. The IDF lifts the curfew on all of Nablus, except the Old City and al-`Ayn r.c.; seals al-Fara' r.c. nr. Nablus, patrolling streets, firing on stone-throwing youths who confront the troops; fires missiles at 2 workshops in Gaza City (alleged to be weapons factories), destroying both but causing no injuries; demolishes 2 Palestinian homes, 4 shops in Rafah; fires on residential areas of Khan Yunis, Rafah; raids, confiscates equipment and files fr. a charitable association nr. Bethlehem; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Dahaysha r.c., Nablus, Qalqilya; begins bulldozing a 350 dunams (d.; 4 d. = 1 acre) nr. Qalqilya for construction of the separation wall. Palestinians fire 2 Qassam rockets at Gaza's Neve Dekalim settlement, lightly injuring 2 Jewish settlers; detonate a roadside bomb by an IDF tank in Gaza, causing some damage but no injuries. Jewish settlers fr. Pdu'el raze olive trees, place barbed wire around a plot of Palestinian land outside Salfit. Some 60 internationals, 20 Palestinians who began a Freedom March along the separation wall route to protest the wall's construction in Zababda nr. Jenin on 7/30 arrive at their destination, Jerusalem, a day ahead of schedule. (NYT, PCHR, WP 8/18; PCHR 8/19, 8/25)
19 AUGUST
The IDF fires on residential areas of Nablus but by evening lifts the curfew, withdraws troops, ending Operation Full Court Press. The IDF fires on 2 Palestinians who stray into a closed military zone in Rafah, injuring 1, then fatally shoots another Palestinian youth who attempts to reach him to provide aid; later shells residential areas of Rafah, killing a 62-yr.-old Palestinian; fires tear gas, live ammunition at Palestinians waiting to cross al-Mahatin checkpoint nr. Dayr al-Balah in central Gaza; fires on residential areas of Brazil r.c., Khan Yunis (seriously damaging a hospital); bulldozes 60 d. of agricultural land, shells residential areas in Wadi al-Silqa in s. Gaza; occupies a building under construction in Hebron as a military post. Late in the evening, the IDF sends bulldozers into Khan Yunis, demolishing 4 Palestinian homes. Palestinians fire 5 Qassam rockets at Sederot, lightly inuring 1 Israeli. (HA, XIN 8/19; NYT 8/20; PCHR 8/26)
20 AUGUST
The IDF continues bulldozing operations in Khan Yunis, pulling out early in the morning; imposes a daylong curfew on Wadi al-Hussein nr. Hebron, also transforms an empty Palestinian house into an observation post; conducts arrest raids, house searches in al-Aza r.c. nr. Bethlehem, Dayr Ghassana nr. Ramallah. A Palestinian dies of injuries received on 8/19 in Brazil r.c. (PRCS 8/20; PCHR 8/26)
21 AUGUST
The IDF sends troops back into Nablus and neighboring Balata r.c., blowing up a metal workshop, conducting house searches, shooting and seriously wounding 1 Palestinian. The IDF also fatally shoots a mentally handicapped Palestinian who strays into a closed military zone outside Nussayrat r.c.; sends bulldozers into al-Qarara nr. Khan Yunis under cover of heavy shelling to level houses previously demolished, tear up roads leading to 3 residential neighborhoods; fires on residential areas of Rafah. 10s of Jewish settlers in Hebron break windows, attempt to set fire to furniture in several Palestinian homes, destroy a water pumping station and a generator; the IDF observes but does not intervene. (AFP 8/21; PCHR 8/26)
22 AUGUST
The IDF reimposes a curfew (lifted on 8/19) on Nablus, then sends jeeps to the central market square to fire on surrounding areas to force dealers to close stalls and Palestinians to return home, injuring 15 Palestinians (including 8 children). The IDF also bulldozes Palestinian land in Bardala in the northeastern tip of the Jordan Valley for construction of security and tax offices; fires on residential areas in Rafah, nr. Ramallah. Palestinian Hussein Jabari dies of injuries sustained in the IDF assassination attempt against his brother, Ahmad Jabari. Palestinian Authority (PA) Prisoner Affairs M Hisham `Abd al-Raziq, 70 Palestinian figures begin a hunger strike in solidarity with hunger-striking Palestinian prisoners; Israeli prison officials say that the number of hunger-striking Palestinian prisoners has nearly doubled to 2,900 since the strike began on 8/15. (WP 8/23; PR 8/25; PCHR 8/26; MM 8/27)
23 AUGUST
In Rafat, the IDF opens fire on several Palestinians removing belongings fr. a home that the IDF earlier warned would be demolished, seriously wounding 1 Palestinian, firing on an ambulance that attempts to reach him, allowing him to bleed to death. The IDF fires on residential areas of Khan Yunis; demolishes a Palestinian home in al-Qarara; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Araqa and Qabatya villages nr. Jenin, Askar r.c. nr. Nablus, Balata r.c., Surif nr. Hebron, Tulkarm. Israel announces plans for another 533 new housing units in the Adam, Emmanuel, Har Adar, Har Gilo settlements in the West Bank. The PA announces that security forces have recently arrested 6 suspected collaborators in Gaza. (JP, MM 8/23; DS, NYT, WP, WT 8/24; VOP 8/24 in WNC 8/26; PR 8/25; PCHR 8/26)
24 AUGUST
The IDF sends troops into Bethlehem, seals and searches a hospital for 3 hrs., detains 2 Palestinians (apparently not patients). The IDF also stages a major incursion into Askar r.c., rounding up more than 300 Palestinian men for questioning at an UNRWA school (the UN protests); fatally shoots a Palestinian farmer, wounds a 2d in al-Qarara; demolishes 1 Palestinian home, searches 3 in al-Qarara; fires on residential areas of Rafah (breaking windows in a hospital). Palestinians across the West Bank, Gaza observe a general strike in solidarity with hunger striking Palestinian prisoners; 80 child prisoners join the strike. (AP, JTA, XIN 8/24; VOP 8/24 in WNC 8/26; WT 8/25; PCHR 8/26)
25 AUGUST
The IDF demolishes 5 Palestinian homes, bulldozes 45 d. in al-Mughraqa nr. Gaza City; blows up 1 Palestinian home nr. Nablus; fires tear gas at Palestinians waiting to cross the al-Mawasi checkpoint; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Abu Dis, Askar r.c., Bayt Laqia nr. Ramallah, Bayt Jala and neighboring Bethlehem, al-Fara' r.c., Ramallah, Tubas nr. Jenin, Yatta nr. Hebron. The IDF also captures 6 Egyptian students armed with a toy gun, knives, binoculars, radios in the Negev, 6 mi inside Israel. Unidentified gunmen fire on the car of PA General Intelligence Service dep. chief Tariq Abu Rajab as he drives along the coastal road in Gaza, seriously wounding him, killing 2 bodyguards, wounding 2 others; no group claims responsibility. (BBC, HA, PR 8/25; NYT, PCHR, WP, WT 8/26; AYM 8/26 in WNC 8/31; JAZ 8/30 in WNC 9/1; QA 8/31 in WNC 9/3; PR 9/1; PCHR 9/2; PR 9/15; MA 9/15 in WNC 9/21)
26 AUGUST
After Palestinians fire several Qassam rockets toward Sederot (causing no damage or injuries) and a mortar at Gush Katif (damaging a building), the IDF closes the Rafah crossing linking Egypt and Gaza; shuts main roads in Gaza to Palestinian traffic, dividing the Strip into thirds; attempts to assassinate for a 2d time (the 1st was on 5/15/00) Islamic Jihad military cmdr. Muhammad Khalil by firing rockets at his Rafah home, wounding him and 5 family mbrs., killing 1 Palestinian neighbor. Senior AMB mbr. Shadi Awamir is killed, 2 Palestinians are injured in a mysterious explosion in his home in Gaza City in what may be an assassination. The IDF demolishes 12 Palestinian homes, fires on residential areas in Rafah; conducts a major raid on Nablus, firing on the Old City fr. helicopters, searching and occupying Palestinian homes as gun posts, clashing with local Palestinians, wounding at least 15 (including 5 children); fires on Palestinians waiting to cross Gaza's Abu Huli crossing, wounding 3; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Bayt Dajan nr. Nablus, Hebron, Ramallah. (VOI 8/26 in WNC 8/28; NYT, WP 8/27; HA, VOI 8/27 in WNC 8/31; PCHR 9/2)
27 AUGUST
The IDF enters, fires on residential areas of Askar r.c., Balata r.c., Nablus. Palestinians fire a mortar at Gush Katif, damaging 1 house. While Palestinians across the territories observe a day of solidarity with hunger-striking Palestinian prisoners by fasting, staging sit-ins, and demonstrating, some 800 Palestinian prisoners at Israel's Ashkelon prison, 350 administrative detainees in Shiqma prison temporarily suspend their strike after Israeli officials agree to halt strip searches, allow some physical contact during family visits. (HA, MM 8/27; VOP 8/27, HA 8/28 in WNC 8/31; PCHR 9/2)
28 AUGUST
The IDF bars all access to al-Salim nr. Nablus; fires on residential areas of Rafah; detonates percussion grenades around Khan Yunis in the middle of the night. A Jewish settler fr. Elon Moreh, with IDF escort, attacks 5 Palestinian shepherds outside Nablus, beating 2, shooting dead 1 sheep and 2 dogs; the IDF does not stop the settler but bars the shepherds fr. leaving. Some 15 Jewish settlers fr. Kiryat Arba throw stones breaking windows of 4 Palestinian homes in 2 neighboring villages. PA FM Nabil Shaath begins a hunger strike in solidarity with hunger-striking Palestinian prisoners. (HA, VOP 8/28, VOP 8/29 in WNC 8/31; PCHR 9/2)
29 AUGUST
The IDF shoots a Palestinian farmer watering his garden nr. Morag settlement in s. Gaza, bars an ambulance fr. reaching him, allowing him to die; fires on armed Palestinians approaching Qarni crossing, fatally shooting 1 Palestinian, while 2-3 escape; fires on residential areas, bulldozes 10 d., buries a well in Rafah's Tal al-Sultan neighborhood; conducts arrest raids, house searches in Bayt Lahiya, Hebron, Nablus, Ramallah, Tamun. In the evening, the IDF sends bulldozers into Rafah's Bloc J area to level land along the Philadelphi Route, fatally shoots a 14-yr.-old Palestinian who emerges fr. a nearby home, hitting him 18 times. Jewish settlers fr. Otniel s. of Hebron set up 4 mobile homes on nearby Palestinian land; the IDF reportedly hooks up electricity. (VOI, VOP 8/29 in WNC 8/31; VOI 8/30 in WNC 9/1; PR 9/1; PCHR 9/2)
CHRONOLOGY SOURCE ABBREVIATIONS
AFP  (Agence France-Presse, Paris)
AP (Associated Press [Internet])                                               
ATL (Anatolia, Ankara) AYM(al-Ayyam,Ramallah)
BBC(British Broadcasting Corporation World Service [Internet]                                   
CNN (Cable News Network    [Internet])                                             
CSM (Christian Science Monitor, Boston)          
DS   (Daily Star, Beirut) HA (Ha'Aretz [Internet], Tel Aviv)                                  
HJ    (al-Hayat al-Jadida, Ramallah)            
IRNA (Islamic Republic News Agency, Tehran)
JAZ  (al-Jazeera Satellite Channel Television, Doha)
JP   (Jerusalem Post [Internet], Jerusalem)     
JPI  (Jerusalem Post International Edition, Jerusalem                                                
JT  (Jordan Times, Amman)                        
JTA (Jewish Telegraphic Agency [Internet])  
LBC (Lebanese Broadcasting Corporation, Beirut)                                                   
MA  (Ma'ariv, Tel Aviv)                             
MEI (Middle East International, London)    
MENA (Middle East News Agency, Cairo)     
MEZ (al-Mezan Center for Human Rights, Jabaliya)                                               
MM  (Mideast Mirror, London)                    
MNR (al-Manar TV, Beirut)                       
NYT (New York Times, New York)            
PCHR (Palestinian Center for Human Rights, Gaza)                                                    
PM (Palestine Monitor [Internet])                
PR  (Palestine Report, Jerusalem)                  
PRCS (Palestine Red Crescent Society [Internet])                                           
PSCT (Palestine Satellite Channel Television, Gaza)(al-Quds al-Arabi, London)
REU   (Reuters [Internet])                           
SA (al-Sharq al-Awsat, London)               
SANA (Syrian Arab News Agency, Damascus)
VOI  (Voice of Israel, Jerusalem)                 
VOP (Voice of Palestine, Jericho)             
WJW (Washington Jewish Week, Rockville, MD)
WNC (World News Connection [Internet], Washington) 
WP (Washington Post, Washington)
WT (Washington Times, Washington)
XIN (Xinhua-New China News Agency, Beijing)
YA (Yedi'ot Aharonot, Tel Aviv)