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News ::
Israel Fires Missle Into Crowd, Machineguns Hospital, 14 Dead,100 Wounded (english)
07 Oct 2002
Modified: 08 Oct 2002
Another day in the Mideast. Israel ("The Brave Little Democracy") shoots (U.S. made) missles into crowd, and machine-guns crowd waiting in front of hospital, kills (so far) 14, wounds over 100. Many more expected to die as a result of wounds.
w w w . h a a r e t z d a i l y . c o m


At least 13 said killed, over 50 hurt in IDF raid in Gaza
At least 13 Palestinians were killed and dozens wounded when IDF tanks backed by helicopters raided a Palestinian neighborhood in the Gaza Strip early Monday morning, witnesses and hospital officials said.

Several hours later, IDF troops fired assault rifles and machine guns into Nasser Hospital in Khan Yunis, where hundreds of people had gathered to learn about the fate of relatives, witnesses said. Four more people were wounded by army fire at the hospital, including a 14-year-old boy hit in the neck and a paramedic wounded in the chest.

Israeli security officials called the operation "very important" and "obligatory" in striking at a Hamas stronghold that Israel had refrained from attacking since the start of the uprising more than two years ago.

"The moment that the army went in there, they were fired on from every window and every opening, so our soldiers had to do the job," said Deputy Defense Minister Weizman Shiri. "The most militant of Hamas men are located there, and if damage was caused to innocent civilians, we can be sorry, but what can you do - this is war."

The operation began in the pre-dawn hours, when Givati Brigade infantry troops, combat engineers and more than two dozen IDF tanks and armored vehicles rumbled into the al-Amal neighbourhood west of Khan Yunis.

After a single missile was fired at a house in the area, viewed as a stronghold of Hamas activity, the troops were met by a volley of fire from Palestinian gunmen and a gunfight ensued. The circumstances of the raid were not clear, though the army said before the operation began that Palestinian militants had fired a rocket at a nearby settlement, causing no casualties.

But as troops began to pull out of the area several hours
later, a helicopter fired a second missile which struck close to a crowd of Palestinians who had ventured out of their shelters to return home, killing several people, witnesses and medics said.

Brigadier-General Yisrael Ziv, commander of the IDF's Gaza Division, said Monday that the neighborhood was a Hamas "nest of terror" and that an initial investigation showed that IDF forces had aimed only at armed men.

Ziv dismissed reports that the casualties were local residents en route to mosque services.

The missile strike came at the end of the four-hour incursion. Residents said people came out into the streets around 4:30 A.M. (02:30 GMT) when they heard the tanks pulling out, but two helicopters remained overhead, and one of them fired the missile.

In the course of the operation, troops arrested none Palestinian suspect and found a number of explosive devices.

Abed Ouda, 29, said he was parking his car when the missile struck. "I heard a huge explosion," he said, "and people were wounded and bleeding on the ground in front of my car."

Dr. Mohammed Abu Dallal from the Nasser hospital said two of the dead were killed in the gunbattle, while at least seven more "were killed as a result of the missile fire."

An IDF source confirmed an operation was taking place in the area but would not give details.

Erekat denounces raid as massacre
Palestinian Minister Saeb Erekat denounced the Israeli raid as a massacre and called on the international community to protect the Palestinians.

Erekat said he believed the raid was timed to disrupt the visit of Javier Solana, the foreign policy chief of the European Union, to the region.

"Every time we witness efforts to revive the peace process and put it back on track, like those being exerted now by Solana, the Israeli government moves to conduct such war crimes and murder innocent civilians because the end game of the Israeli government is to resume full occupation of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank," he said.

A senior aide to Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat, Nabil Abu Rudeineh, called for an international peace-keeping force to protect the Palestinians.

"This is a crime that proves that Israel should be punished and isolated. There should be international sanctions. Israel is sabotaging efforts by the Quartet and the U.S. to revive peace efforts," he told reporters in Ramallah.

By Amos Harel and Arnon Regular, Ha'aretz Correspondents, and News Agencies
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Do something (english)
07 Oct 2002
Join the Boston Committee for Palestinian Rights
And today.... (english)
08 Oct 2002
And today, Israel killed a 12 year old Palestinian girl, and critically wounded a 12 year old Palestinian boy for "throwing stones at an Israeli Tank".