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Cablegate: The Situation On the Ground: #81; April 30, 2004

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 TEL AVIV 002473

SIPDIS

NEA FOR BURNS/SATTERFIELD
NEA/SA/EX FOR AUSTIN-FERGUSON; DEPT FOR DS/IP/ITA; DEPT FOR
DS/IP/NEA; DRL FOR A/S CRANER
NSC FOR ABRAMS/DANIN
USAID FOR DCHA, DCHA/FFP
CENTCOM FOR GENERAL ABIZAID

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KWBG PTER ASEC PHUM CASC KPAL
SUBJECT: THE SITUATION ON THE GROUND: #81; APRIL 30, 2004
(1600 HOURS LOCAL) -- IDF ACTIONS IN WEST BANK KILL TWO,
GAZA UNKNOWNS ATTACK PA HOSPITAL DIRECTOR


THIS IS A JOINT MESSAGE FROM CONGEN JERUSALEM AND EMBASSY TEL
AVIV

1. (SBU) Summary. In the West Bank, IDF troops killed one
Palestinian during a clash with stone throwers, and another
Palestinian woman reportedly died of tear gas inhalation in a
separate incident. An IDF incursion team demolished houses
throughout the West Bank, including 11 south of Hebron. In
the Gaza Strip, Israeli authorities at Karni crossing found
an explosive device in an outbound shipment. Unknown
Palestinians attacked and beat Dr. Ibrahim Habbash, director
of Gaza City's Shifa Hospital. Demonstrators throughout the
Strip protested the GOI's withholding of PA funds. End
summary.

---------
West Bank
---------

2. (SBU) ATTACKS:

-- Death: The IDF killed one Palestinian April 29 in Haris
village, near Ariel settlement, during a clash with stone
throwers.

-- Death/Injury: A Palestinian woman died April 29 in her
home in Furra refugee camp, reportedly after inhaling tear
gas Israeli troops fired during a clash in the camp, Fifteen
other Palestinians were injured in the clash.

3. (SBU) DEMOLITIONS:

-- The IDF demolished 11 shacks near Yatta village, south of
Hebron, April 29, apparently because they were constructed
without permits.

-- The IDF demolished one house in Bayt Ummar village, south
of Bethlehem on Route 60, apparently because it had been
built without a permit.

-- The IDF destroyed a small Palestinian gas station in the
Jordan Valley April 29.

4. (SBU) CURFEWS/CLOSURES:

-- No age restrictions were imposed on Palestinians coming to
Jerusalem to pray at Al Aqsa Mosque April 30.

-- Bitunia village was under curfew April 29.

----------
Gaza Strip
----------

5. (SBU) ATTACKS:

-- Deaths: Nil.

-- Injury: Israeli media reported that Palestinians near Khan
Younis fired an anti-tank rocket at an IDF bulldozer,
injuring two soldiers.

-- Injury: UNRWA reported that unknown masked men attacked
and beat Dr. Ibrahim Habbash, Director of the Shifa Hospital
and a reportedly high-ranking member of Fatah, outside the
entrance to the Rimal Health Center April 30.

-- Mortars/Rockets/Shootings: According to IDF and Israeli
media sources, Israeli Airports Authority officials stationed
at the Karni crossing safely detonated an explosive belt
found in a container loaded with textiles that was headed for
the West Bank. According to UNRWA, IDF forces opened fire
opposite the Barahma area near Rafah, and fired a tank shell
and flares at Kusufim April 30.

6. (SBU) BORDER CROSSINGS/CHECKPOINTS

-- Route Four (Salahadeen Road), the main north-south traffic
artery, was closed at Netzarim junction and subject to random
closures at Abu Kholi April 30.

-- Erez Crossing was closed to Palestinians but open to
internationals, and the Erez industrial zone was closed April
30.

-- Sufa Crossing was closed April 30.

-- Karni Terminal was closed April 30 due to the discovery of
an explosive belt in a container headed for the West Bank
(see above.)

-- Rafah Terminal was open except to Palestinians between the
ages of 16 and 35 April 30.

-- The Al-Mowassi checkpoints were closed at Tel al-Sultan
and Toufah April 30.

7. (SBU) INCURSIONS/DEMOLITIONS

-- According to UNRWA, IDF forces entered the Khan Younis
camp with several tanks and bulldozers, demolishing five
homes and damaging 15 April 18.

8. (SBU) POLITICAL DEVELOPMENTS

-- Fatah organized a demonstration in support of President
Arafat in Gaza City April 29. Approximately 10,000 people
attended, including students, legislators, PA officials, and
National and Islamic Powers representatives, some of whom
were armed and fired into the air. The demonstration ended
at 1240 hours according to UNRWA.

-- Israeli media sources reported that PA Minister of
Industry and Trade Maher al-Masri expressed concern that
Israel was not coordinating with the PA over the economic
aspects of withdrawal. He stated April 30 that the PA would
like control over the industrial zone and would like
Palestinians to continue being able to work in Israel after a
withdrawal.

-- According to UNRWA there were scattered demonstrations at
mosques throughout the strip after noon prayers April 30 to
protest MATAK's holding of PA monies meant to assist poor
families.

********************************************* ********************
Visit Embassy Tel Aviv's Classified Website:
http://www.state.sgov.gov/p/nea/telaviv

You can also access this site through the State Department's
Classified SIPRNET website.
********************************************* ********************
KURTZER

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