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IOF Shoot Dead Two Teenage Brothers

IOF Shoot Dead Two Teenage Brothers, Raid Palestinian Cities

Israel Allows Non-Muslims into al-Aqsa, Attacks Detainees in Megiddo prison

Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) shot dead two Palestinian brothers, both in their mid teens, after raiding Tulkarem refugee camp in the northern West Bank on Wednesday when after Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon ordered a series of attacks against Palestinian targets, while Isareli police allowed non-Muslims into al-Aqsa compound and attacked Palestinian detainees in Megiddo prison wounding dozens of them.

In the northern West Bank, witnesses said Islam Ghanem, 16, was shot dead and his body was taken by the IOF raiding Tulkarem refugee camp.

Israeli sources confirmed a Palestinian was killed and said they had temporarily taken the body for “identification purposes.”

Shortly afterwards, medical sources said Ghanem’s younger brother, Sa’ed, 15, who had been critically injured by a bullet to the chest during the raid, had died of his wounds in Tulkarem hospital.

Three other Palestinians were also injured by IOF soldiers during the raid.

Palestinian security sources said that a special undercover unit of IOF soldiers dressed as civilians pushed into the town and began firing inside the camp.

IOF troops also detained four people, witnesses said.

Meanwhile, some 15 Israeli tanks were seen moving out of an IOF base just north of Ramallah and heading along a major road towards the West Bank city, Palestinian security sources told AFP.

Five of the tanks, accompanied by a similar number of jeeps, stationed themselves at the main entrance to the neighboring town of El Bireh, while the remaining tanks stopped just short of Ramallah, an AFP correspondent said.

An Israeli helicopter was also seen over-flying both cities.

Earlier, Israeli occupation troops sealed off all the entrances to Ramallah, which is home to the West Bank headquarters of Palestinian President Yasser Arafat and the governbment of Prime Minister Mahmud Abbas.

IOF troops and tanks also raided the West Bank towns of Nablus and Jenin early Thursday, Palestinian officials said.

Some 20 tanks, personnel carriers and other vehicles raided Jenin.

IOF also imposed a curfew in central Nablus after more than 30 vehicles — mostly trucks and a few tanks — entered the city.

IOF detained ten Palestinians in Arraba town and Jalboun village in the northern West Bank governorate of Jenin, Palestinian security sources said.

Israeli bulldozers also demolished the house of Fakhri Yehya, in Kfur Ra'ei village, near Tulkarem, witnesses said.

Earlier, IOF demolished two houses owned by Jalajel family in the occupied east Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan, south Al Aqsa Mosque compound, WAFA reported

Meanwhile, IOF sealed off and imposed strict curfew on the southern West Bank city of Hebron for the second consecutive day, citizens said.

Israel Allows Non-Muslims to Enter al-Aqsa Despite Palestinian Rejection

Separately, the Israeli police have reopened Al-Aqsa mosque, Islam’s third holiest site, to Jews and Christians on Wednesday, despite Palestinian rejection and warning that the move could flare the violence.

A group of American tourists already visited Al-Aqsa Mosque - in occupied east Jerusalem Wednesday morning, under intense police security, according to Israeli media.

Israel’s Internal Security Minister, Tzachi HaNegbi said Wednesday morning, following the site’s re-opening that “From now on, we won't allow Palestinians to prohibit non-Muslims from visiting the site, which is holy to all religions.”

According to Levy, “After the Temple Mount had been opened to visitors for a few months, the police suspended the entrance of Jewish and Christian visitors to the Mount for operational reasons for a period of three weeks,” and added, “The suspension and re-opening came after the issues had been examined.”

Last week, the Mufti of Jerusalem and Palestine, Sheikh Ekrema Sabri, has criticized the Israeli government for its practices against Al-Aqsa Mosque.

Sheikh Sabri affirmed that the Islamic Awkaf department was the sole party responsible for holy shrines in occupied Jerusalem, especially Al Aqsa Mosque and was the only authority to allow or ban the entry of non-Muslims.

“The resumption of foreigners’ visits to the al-Aqsa Mosque’s plazas would be declared whenever the Wakf found it appropriate,” he elaborated.

Dozens of Detainees Attacked, Wounded by IOF

Separately, dozens of Palestinians detainees, held in Megiddo prison, were wounded after IOF soldiers opened fire at them after they protested against the transfer of some prisoners to Kziot prison in southern Israel,

Kziot has a reputation among Palestinian prisoners for poorer conditions than Megiddo.

“'This is a political riot, a protest. The administration of the prison wanted to punish us so they decided to transfer 220 prisoners who are serving life sentences to Kziot. We refused that,” a prisoner spokesman who identified himself as Yassin Yassin told Reuters by mobile phone from inside.

“'The soldiers used tear gas and rubber bullets and there are tents ablaze,” he said.

Israel has jailed about 8,000 Palestinians since the outbreak of the 34-month-old uprising against the Israeli 36-year old occupation, many held without charges.

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