Newsletter : 2fax0220.txt
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>JN Feb. 20, 2002, Vol. 10, No. 35
Israel Faxx will not be published from Feb. 21 through Feb. 26. We
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Six More Israelis Die
By VOA News
At least six Israelis have been shot dead in a Palestinian ambush,
the latest fatalities in a wave of violence that has claimed at
least 22 lives since Monday.
Israeli radio reported that Palestinian gunmen got into a West Bank
building and opened fire on an Israeli military checkpoint near
Ramallah. The attack occurred in an area of the West Bank still
occupied by Israel.
Earlier Tuesday, a Palestinian suicide bomber tried to force
himself onto an Israeli bus in the West Bank that was packed with
at least 50 passengers. He was pushed back by the driver and the
bomb exploded, killing only the attacker.
Israel also launched more air strikes to retaliate for earlier
Palestinian attacks in the Gaza Strip and West Bank. An Israeli
helicopter gunship killed two members of the Islamic militant group
Hamas in the Gaza Strip refugee camp of Jabalya, and wounded about
six students at a nearby school. Hamas has vowed revenge.
Palestinian officials said Israeli shelling of Khan Yunis in Gaza
killed three Palestinians. Israeli troops killed four other
Palestinians during armed encounters in Gaza and at a West Bank
refugee camp, Balata. Twelve Palestinians and at least 10 Israelis
have died in this latest surge of violence.
Retired Israeli Generals Call for Unilateral Pullout
By VOA News
A group of retired Israeli generals are campaigning for a
unilateral withdrawal from most of the occupied Palestinian
The Council for Peace and Security is made up of more than 1,000
retired Israeli security officials. Its proposal includes the
dismantling of about 40 Jewish settlements and the establishment of
a Palestinian state. The group says troops used to the defend the
settlements should instead be placed on the frontier of Israel and
the West Bank.
The idea, which is being championed by former prime minster Ehud
Barak, calls for the removal of Jewish settlers from all of Gaza
and most of the West Bank. Israel would recognize a Palestinian
state in areas under Palestinian rule and hold talks with its
The Israeli group also advocates the immediate resumption of
negotiations with the Palestinians. This idea runs counter to the
refusal of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to negotiate while violence
Sharon has said he believes there will be a Palestinian state at
the end of the peace process, but that there must be calm before
any negotiations. Many of his key supporters oppose evacuation
of any Jewish settlers.
Turkey Detains Israel Bomb Suspects
By VOA News
Turkish police have detained three Arab men who allegedly were
plotting a suicide bomb attack in Israel. A police spokesman in
Istanbul identified the suspects as two Palestinians and a
Jordanian and says they are part of group called Beyyiat el-Imam.
Turkish police said the suspects received training in Taliban-run
camps in Afghanistan and fought for the Taliban. The accused were
detained in Van province of eastern Turkey after entering illegally
The suspects told Turkish police they were planning to travel to
Istanbul and then to Israel, where at least one of the accused was
to carry out a bombing in a crowded area of Tel Aviv or Ramat Gan.
Turkish police have detained six people in Istanbul for helping the
accused bombers with false passports and other forged documents.
Turkey's Anatolia news agency reported earlier that the detainees
were believed to be part of the al-Qaida terror network and were of
Jordanian, Syrian and Saudi origin.
Czech Prime Minister Denies Comparing Arafat to Hitler
Czech Prime Minister Milos Zeman, in Prague, strongly denied on
Tuesday a Ha'aretz report that said he had drawn a comparison
between Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat and Adolf Hitler.
Zeman said he was "surprised" to read about the alleged comparison,
which he said was based on a misquoted statement he made over the
weekend while visiting Israel on a diplomatic and trade junket.
"I would like to stress that I never compared Arafat with Hitler,"
Zeman said in a statement released by his spokesman, Libor Roucek.
The report, based on an interview with Zeman and printed in
Monday's edition of Ha'aretz, triggered a diplomatic backlash as
top officials from the European Union, Germany, Austria and Spain
demanded an explanation from the Czech leader.
Czech President Vaclav Havel said Tuesday he was "deeply disturbed" by
the alleged remarks, which he said could "only further increase
tensions" between Israel and the Palestinians.
The newspaper report had raised doubts about Wednesday's scheduled
meeting in Prague between Zeman and German Foreign Minister Joschka
Fischer. But Fischer's office said the visit has not been canceled.
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