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Israel Kills Nine in Gaza, UN Says Siege Must Stop
Tue Sep 24, 3:26 PM ET
By Nidal al-Mughrabi
GAZA (Reuters) - The Israeli army killed nine Palestinians on Tuesday in one of its biggest raids in the Gaza Strip and faced international isolation over its siege of Yasser Arafat 's base after the U.N. Security Council said it must stop.
[Huh? "After the UN Security Council said it must stop"? Must stop what?]
The United States abstained in the vote rather than veto it,
[WHAT VOTE? What vote did the US abstain from? What did the UN vote upon? No mention of a UN Security Council resolution is made!]
signaling the growing impatience of Israel's ally and the main Middle East peacebroker. Washington seeks calm in the region and Arab support for its preparations for possible war with Iraq.
In a statement, Arafat said his government welcomed the U.N. resolution and urged quick implementation.
[Oh, so it was a UN *resolution.* But what did the resolution declare? When was it issued?]
A senior Israeli official said Israel would comply with it only if Palestinians met their obligations to arrest militants under the measure. He doubted the Palestinians would do so and said Israel's own compliance was therefore "highly unlikely."
[Compliance with what? What is it that Israel has been called upon to do by the UN?]
Dozens of tanks and armored vehicles backed by helicopter gunships poured into two Gaza City suburbs hours after Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said the army, having besieged Arafat's offices, could target the militant Islamic group Hamas next.
Gaza is the main power base of Hamas, which has carried out scores of suicide bombings in a two-year-old Palestinian uprising against Israeli occupation, including an attack last week that prompted the siege of Arafat's Ramallah headquarters.
The army said it blew up 13 metal workshops that comprised a makeshift weapons factory, as well as the family home of a militant. The workshop owners denied making weapons.
A military source said some of the workshops made Qassam rockets, which Hamas has fired from Gaza into Israel.
The raid met fierce resistance and triggered gunfights. Palestinian hospital sources and families said six civilians and three militants were killed and more than 20 people hurt.
It was the bloodiest day in Gaza since Israel killed Hamas's military commander, his deputy and 14 civilians in an air strike on Gaza City on July 23.
Soldiers also razed the two-story Gaza house belonging to the family of Mohammad Farhat, a militant who killed five people in a Jewish settlement in March before being shot dead.
Israeli media criticized Sharon for doing little to hit Hamas while besieging Arafat in response to two suicide bombings that killed seven people, both claimed by Islamic militant groups, one of them Hamas, opposed to the Palestinian leader.
Arafat says Israeli military clampdowns have crippled his ability to rein in the militants.
Troops have demolished most of Arafat's presidential complex since last Thursday and penned him and more than 200 others into a single building as they press demands for the surrender of 50 suspected militants Israel says are also holed up inside.
On Tuesday soldiers shouted through loudspeakers at the Palestinians inside the offices: "Peace be upon you. Turn yourselves in. It is better for you."
The U.N. Security Council adopted a resolution demanding Israel end its siege, using a compromise European text that also called on the Palestinian Authority to bring those responsible for attacks to justice.
[Oh for crying out loud! WHAT did the resolution say? WHEN was it "adopted"? We already have heard what the resolution wants Palestine to do, but what in god's name DOES IT WANT ISRAEL TO DO?]
Arafat "stressed that the Palestinian Authority is committed to the decision with all its items, and it calls on the international community to compel Israel to implement the withdrawal and end the siege," his statement said.
An Israeli Foreign Ministry statement said the decision was positive in "calling for an end to (Palestinian) terror and for putting terrorists on trial" but added that the U.N. demand for an immediate end to its military action was "difficult" to accept.
[He "added" that. It was almost an afterthought. Don't report that Israel is right now DEFYING THE UN. It is only here that we get a vague clue about what the UN wants: an "immediate end to its military action."]
Raanan Gissin, senior adviser to Sharon, said he did not expect the Palestinian Authority to meet U.N. demands to prosecute militants.
"Since the Palestinian Authority definitely not only is not arresting terrorists but actually aiding and abetting them, then it is highly unlikely that we could unilaterally fulfil our part of the resolution," Gissin told Reuters.
Jordan urged Israel to comply, saying its siege tactics only prolonged the Middle East "cycle of violence."
Earlier, the White House said President Bush "views what Israel is doing now as unhelpful to the cause of bringing about reform in Palestinian institutions" before resuming talks on a Palestinian state.
A prominent Palestinian lawmaker who has sharply criticized Arafat's handling of reforms said masked gunmen sprayed bullets at his house on Tuesday although he was not at home at the time.
Legislator Nabil Amr said he believed the shooting was aimed at intimidating him into changing his political views, but he did not accuse anyone of responsibility.
At least 1,564 Palestinians and 600 Israelis have been killed since the Palestinian revolt began in September 2000 after U.S.-brokered peace negotiations stalled.
HERE IS WHAT REUTERS REFUSED TO TELL ITS READERS. HERE IS WHAT THE MEDIA WANTS TO HIDE:
SECURITY COUNCIL DEMANDS IMMEDIATE HALT TO ISRAELI MEASURES IN RAMALLAH,
'EXPEDITIOUS' ISRAELI WITHDRAWAL TO PRE-SEPTEMBER 2000 POSITIONS
Council Adopts Resolution 1435 (2002)
By 14-0-1 Vote, with United States Abstaining
THE MOST BASIC AMERICAN JOURNALISTIC STANDARDS THAT ANY READER IN THE U.S. IS ENTITLED TO EXPECT WERE MURDERED TODAY BY REUTERS' COWARDICE AND COWERING.