Newsletter : 1fax0821.txt
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>JN Aug. 21, 2001, Bol. 9, No. 142
Three Die in Gaza Blast
By Meredith Buel (VOA-Jerusalem)
A Palestinian man and his two children died after an explosion
ripped through their home in the Gaza Strip. The three died under
The Palestinian activist, Samir Abu Zeid, and his young daughter
and son were killed in the blast. Palestinian officials said an
Israeli missile hit his home in the southern Gaza Strip near the
Israel denied firing a missile at the house and initially said the
explosion occurred when a Palestinian mortar, which was aimed at an
Israeli position, fell short of its target. Later, a military
spokesman said an examination of the evidence showed Abu Zeid was
handling a bomb that exploded prematurely. Abu Zeid was the leader
of a local squad of activists engaged in confrontations with
Israeli troops and Jewish settlers in Gaza.
Meanwhile, the Israeli army said it seized a Palestinian truck full
of weapons and ammunition as it crossed from Israeli territory into
the Gaza Strip. An army spokesman said the weapons were hidden
under building material in a truck driven by a Palestinian man from
the West Bank town of Ramallah.
U.N. Security Council Debates Mideast Crisis
By Breck Ardery (VOA-United Nations)
The United Nations Security Council debated the crisis between
Israel and the Palestinians Monday, but with no consensus on what
action the Council should take.
The head of the Palestine Observer Mission, Nasser Al-Kidwa, opened
the debate with charges that Israel is guilty of "atrocities"
against the Palestinian people.
Al-Kidwa did condemn suicide bombings against Israel. However, the
Palestinian representative said those suicide attacks did not occur
until after what he characterized as a "bloody military campaign"
carried out by Israel against the Palestinians. "Tension and
confrontation are being caused because Israeli occupying forces
expanded against Palestinian populated areas constituting a state
of unbearable pressure on our people."
Al-Kidwa expressed strong support for a proposed Security Council
resolution that would establish some type of international
"monitoring mechanism" in the West Bank and Gaza.
But Israeli ambassador Yehuda Lancry said the proposed resolution
is one-sided and Israel remains opposed to an international
monitoring presence. "How can the Palestinians claim the need for
protection while they kill Israelis by the dozens on an ongoing
Still No Temple Mount Visits For Jews
The Supreme Court rejected another petition for Jews to visit
the Temple Mount. Moshe Yogev of Gush Etzion requested that the
police allow him to do so, but Judges Barak, Levine, and Cheshin
accepted the police position that such permission would lead to
The Temple Mount has been closed to Jews for almost 11 months.
Levine said that he is greatly troubled by the continuing closure
of the Mount to Jews, and that he fears that this is the beginning
of a "slippery slope" of capitulation to threats of violence.
Ransom for a Stolen Chagall: An Israeli-Palestinian Peace
By Israel Faxx Staff
A painting by artist Marc Chagall, "Study for 'Over Vitebsk'"
was stolen from a wall at the Jewish Museum in New York City
between June 7 and June 8. The painting, on loan from a private
collection in Russia, is valued at over $1 million.
But now the museum has received a ransom demand -- not for money,
but for peace. The letter said, according to museum officials and
the police, that the painting would not be returned until there is
peace between Israel and the Palestinians.
The demand, postmarked June 12, was signed by the International
Committee for Art and Peace, a group unknown to the FBI.
The New York Times reported Monday that the existence of the demand
letter in the Chagall theft was kept secret until after it had
undergone extensive forensic testing, Spokeswoman Anne Scher told
the Times "We are extremely distressed about the missing painting,
and this communication gives us hope for the possibility of
recovering the work."
Law enforcement officials said that the writer apologized for the
theft and embarrassing the museum, and said the painting was "being
taken care of."
The officials, who asked for anonymity, said they could not tell if
the writer's sympathies lie with the Palestinians or Israel. One
investigator told the Times it was not clear exactly what peace
conditions would secure the painting's return.
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