Palestine/Israel News and Information Links January 22-23 2003
Major portions of this document are sourced from from Vermonters for a Just Peace in Palestine/Israel - Other sources include Information Clearing House.

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January 23 2004

‘Jewish lobby’ is an anti-Semitic term, says US diplomat:
A senior US diplomat in London has ruffled feathers in Britain’s foreign policy establishment by publicly implying that a reference to the “Jewish lobby” in the United States is an anti-Semitic remark.

British MP in ‘suicide’ bomb row:
A British parliamentarian has said she would consider becoming a “suicide bomber” if she were a Palestinian. Jenny Tonge MP told a British satellite channel on Thursday that she understood the attackers’ “desperation”.,2763,1129884,00.html
Boy, 11, killed in border shooting
The Guardian 1/23/2004
An 11-year-old Palestinian boy has been killed and two other youths wounded by Israeli soldiers in a highly sensitive area close to the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip. The boy’s family claimed that Mohsan Daur, from the Jebaliya refugee camp near Gaza City, was out hunting birds with a group of friends when he was shot and killed by soldiers on alert for Palestinian militants attempting to cross into Israel.

Israel: The heart breaks :
Mohammed Araj was six and a half, and carefully protected by his father; But it wasn’t enough: The soldier emerged from the alley between their house and the cemetery at the edge of Balata camp, and shot him once, straight to the heart.
Kin: Dead Palestinian Boy Was Hunting
Palestine Chronicle 1/23/2004
Gaza’s border fence said his nephew and several other boys were just hunting birds, but the Israeli army said troops opened fire because they believed militants were trying to sneak into Israel. The boy killed Thursday, Mohsan Daur, was from the Jebaliya refugee camp in northern Gaza. Troops shot toward the boys, who turned out to be unarmed, in an area where Palestinian militants have repeatedly planted explosives or tried to sneak into Israel, the army said. The area, along the fence between Gaza and Israel, has been off limits to Palestinians during more than three years of fighting.
Israeli general urges rethink on West Bank roadblocks
Middle East Online 1/23/2004
JERUSALEM – The general who heads Israel’s “civil administration” in the West Bank called Friday for a major rethink on the scores of army roadblocks that impede Palestinian movement across the territory. “The attitude of the soldiers who man the roadblocks must be completely changed and some must be removed,” General Ilan Paz said in an interview with Israel’s top-selling daily Yediot Aharonot.
Hamas remains defiant
Al-Ahram Weekly on-line 22 – 28 January 2004
Israeli threats to assassinate Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, leave Hamas leaders unimpressed. Khaled Amayreh reports from the West Bank — After a series of bloody incursions by the Israeli occupation forces into Palestinian population centres had left scores of Palestinians dead and injured, Hamas retaliated on 14 January by carrying out its first suicide bombing in more than two months. In response to the attack, which killed three soldiers and a security guard, Israel threatened to assassinate Hamas leader and founder Sheikh Ahmed Yassin.
Israel introduces ‘anti-human bomb’ buses
Middle East Online 1/23/2004
JERUSALEM – Israel has come up with a new system aimed to stop suicide bombers boarding buses before blowing themselves up, by detecting the explosives they are carrying. The system, developed by Israeli Military Industries, takes the form of a turnstile fitted with shields that contain sensors which can detect explosive materials and metals at a distance of up to a meter (yard) from the bus….Maariv also revealed that Israel’s foreign ministry had decided to back an initiative by Zaka – the religious organization in charge of collecting human remains after bombings – to send the charred carcass of a bus to the International Court of Justice in the Hague.
UN likely to continue peacekeeping mission in Lebanon
Daily Star 1/23/2004
BEIRUT: The “fragile stability‰ along the Lebanon-Israel border is likely to ensure that the United Nations peacekeeping force in southern Lebanon will face no obstacles in having its mandate renewed for a further six months when the UN Security Council meets next week, diplomats say.
News Briefs: Settlers protected by army
International Middle East Media Center 1/23/2004
Settlers in Nablus protected by the army: Hundreds of settlers entered Nablus last night protected by the military claiming that the want to visit the holy site of Joseph’s tomb in the city. Sources mentioned that they did some constructing in the site.

Prisons Authority seeks six months isolation for Barghouti
Ha’aretz 1/23/2004
The Prisons Authority sought on Thursday to hold jailed Tanzim leader Marwan Barghouti in isolation for another six months, saying it would limit his ability to direct attacks from behind bars. A Prisons Authority official said Barghouti had not stopped “his terrorist activity” since arrested by Israeli commandos in the West Bank last year. He is on trial accused of orchestrating Palestinian attacks that killed 26 people.
Eyes Wide Open
B’Tselem has produced a song and music video as part of the organization’s campaign against Israel’s siege policy. The song – “Eyes Wide Open” – is a remake of a popular Israeli song, featuring well-known Israeli artists. The song’s lyrics speak of the need to acknowledge the reality around us. “You have to see the wrong in order to fight it… Don’t put on glasses/Rose colored or gray/Look with your eyes/Eyes wide open.” The music video features footage taken at roadblocks and checkpoints within the West Bank and shows the daily reality of Israel’s siege policy.
700 People To Be Left in Legal Limbo: Nationality Revocation Attacked as Inhumane
Palestine Chronicle/Daily Star 1/23/2004
[Lebanon] At least 700 people will find themselves in legal limbo following an announcement last week by Interior Minister Elias Murr that they will be stripped of their nationality. This was the first batch of people whose nationality will be revoked after the Shura Council issued a unanimous ruling last May on a petition presented by the Maronite League challenging the controversial 1994 naturalization decree.
Restrictions on visitors to the OPT – more information
International Solidarity Movement 1/23/2004
Friends, Many of you have written concerned about the action alert we sent out last week regarding the new restrictions on entry into the Occupied Palestinian Territories – For clarification and further information…

Weissglas to Rice: Israel won’t annex territory
Jerusalem Post 1/23/2004
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s bureau chief Dov Weissglas guaranteed US national security adviser, Condoleezza Rice, in their meeting Thursday that Sharon’s disengagement plan does not include the annexation of territory. The two met to review Israel’s security fence and an impending discussion of the matter at The Hague, prospects for reviving the road map, and Sharon’s possible plan of unilateral disengagement from the Palestinians in the event talks breakdown completely.
Security fence likely to be rerouted
Maariv 1/23/2004
The PM‚s bureau chief met with NSA Condoleezza Rice on Thursday. They discussed the security fence and Sharon‚s disengagement plan. — Dov Weisglas, head of the Prime Minister‚s office, met with U.S. National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice Thursday night. The meeting focused on the route of the security fence and the Prime Minister‚s disengagement plan. Israel‚s ambassador the the U.S Danny Ayalon and Shalom Turgeman, the Prime Minister‚s political advisor, were also present.
U.S. Advice To Israelis: Don’t Start Syria Talks
Forward 1/23/2004
WASHINGTON ˜ The Bush administration recently advised the Israeli government against taking up the offer of Syrian President Bashar Assad to resume peace negotiations, Israeli and American diplomats in Washington confirmed. The administration, according to sources, voiced several concerns regarding Assad’s recent public claims that he is willing to resume peace negotiations with Israel.
Veteran US Diplomat Djerejian to Explore Syrian, Israeli Intentions
Virtual Jerusalem 1/23/2004
At its wits‚ end to pierce the thicket of rhetoric emanating from Damascus and Jerusalem, the White House has plucked the veteran Middle East hand, Edward P. Djerejian, from academia for a fresh initiative to try and decode the conflicting signals broadcast by the Assad regime on whether or not and under what conditions they are prepared to resume peace talks.

FM Shalom: ties with Arab states improved since Iraq war
Ha’aretz 1/23/2004
DAVOS, Switzerland – Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom said Thursday that one of the benefits of the Iraq war and the capture of Saddam Hussein was that Arab moderates were no longer afraid to have contacts with Israel. Shalom listed a series of recent meetings with a half-dozen Arab leaders and foreign ministers and suggested he would be meeting “some” Arabs on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum, although he did not name any.
Sharon to make case for West Bank barrier
Middle East Online 1/23/2004
Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, who faces a bribery scandal at home, will most likely visit Washington next month ahead of an International Court of Justice hearing on the legality of his government’s controversial West Bank separation barrier, an Israeli official said Friday. The official, who asked not to be identified, said Sharon had been given “an open invitation” to visit the United States for talks with President George W. Bush.
Armitage: Mideast peace efforts at ‘stalemate’
Middle East Online 1/23/2004
WASHINGTON – Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage said Thursday that Middle East peace efforts were “at a bit of a stalemate” as two senior US diplomats prepared for a mission to the region to press Israel and the Palestinians to resume talks. Armitage placed blame for the lack of progress on the US-backed roadmap for peace on both Israel and the Palestinians, saying neither side was meeting their obligations under the once-vaunted, but now floundering plan.
Sharon Aide: U.S. ‘Indifferent’ To Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
Forward 1/23/2004
JERUSALEM ˜ The Bush administration, while focused intensely on its “grand plan” for remaking the Middle East, is “indifferent to the situation” between Israel and the Palestinians and is unlikely to re-engage until after the November elections, according to Israel’s defense minister, Shaul Mofaz. Speaking to the Forward in an exclusive interview this week, Mofaz said the war in Iraq and the U.S. war against terrorism had set off a “domino effect,” resulting in “very conclusive” changes in places such as Libya.

U.S. pushes for greater NATO role in Middle East
Ha’aretz 1/23/2004
BRUSSELS, Belgium – A prominent Republican senator added his voice Friday to an intensifying U.S. drive to persuade NATO to expand its role in the “greater Middle East,” with more military involvement in Afghanistan and Iraq – and an eventual engagement in Israeli-Palestinian peace efforts. “The strategic focus of NATO’s efforts in the first half of the 21st Century will be the greater Middle East,” Sen. Chuck Hagel, of Nebraska, told a seminar attended by ambassadors from the 19 NATO allies and several Arab nations.
Israeli-Sudan detente in the works
Maariv 1/23/2004
A-Siasa: Israeli delegation visited Sudan to facilitate the immigration of 18,000 Ethiopian Jews. — An Israeli delegation visited Sudan this week in order to facilitate the immigration of 18,000 Ethiopian Jews to Israel, according to a report by Kuwaiti newspaper A-Siasa. European diplomatic sources in Geneva told the newspaper that the delegation, comprised of Foreign Ministry and IDF representatives, was allowed to visit following US intervention.
Annan says UN won’t take part in Hague court proceedings
Virtual Jerusalem 1/23/2004
Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom met Friday morning with United Nations secretary general Kofi Annan. At the meeting in Davos, Switzerland, Shalom raised Israel’s objections to the International Court of Justice taking up the security fence issue….The secretary general said that the UN would not be participating in the court proceedings that are due to begin in February in The Hague.

Lebanon rejects U.S. demand to rein in Hezbollah
Ha’aretz 1/23/2004
BEIRUT, Lebanon – Lebanon’s government on Friday said a Hezbollah rocket attack that killed an Israeli soldier along the border was an act of self-defense, brushing aside demands by the U.S. ambassador that the government clamp down on the guerrillas. Foreign Minister Jean Obeid, reacting to the U.S. comments, said that “Lebanon and the resistance are engaged in self-defense and are responding to Israel’s daily aerial, naval and territorial violations.”
On fence case at The Hague, U.S. likely will not back Israel
Virtual Jerusalem 1/23/2004
The Bush administration does not like the International Court of Justice at The Hague, but it likes the route of Israel‚s West Bank security barrier even less. That‚s why the administration plans to stay out of a case at The Hague over the security fence ˜ unless Israel demonstrates beforehand that the fence will hew to the West Bank boundary line….Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon‚s top adviser, Dov Weisglass, is in Washington this week to try to persuade the White House to change its mind and come down on Israel‚s side in opposing the court‚s jurisdiction.
Fence may be rerouted at US request
Virtual Jerusalem 1/23/2004
An Israeli official present at Thursday’s meeting between Prime Minister’s Office bureau chief, Dov Weisglass, and U.S. national security advisor, Condoleezza Rice, said the route of the West Bank fence was being seriously reconsidered to fall in line wilth U.S. requests. Dov Weisglass is in Washington to hold talks with Condoleezza Rice on the security fence and the peace process between Israel and the Palestinians.
Crisis Brewing up Between Jordan, Israel over Apartheid Wall
Virtual Jerusalem 1/23/2004
A diplomatic crisis is brewing up between Israel and Jordan, bound by a peace treaty signed in 1994, ahead of Israeli Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom ‘s upcoming visit to Amman next week as a result of the Apartheid Wall that Israel is building on occupied Palestinian land in the West Bank. Silvan Shalom has confirmed he would be traveling to Jordan next week, expectedly on January 28.
Shaath: Possible charges against Sharon impede peace bid
Ha’aretz 1/23/2004
DAVOS, Switzerland – Palestinian Foreign Minister Nabil Shaath said on Friday it would be hard to make progress on peace while Israel was preoccupied by a bribery scandal unsettling Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s government. “It’s very difficult to produce deeper decisions, especially now that the Israelis are going through this period of corruption charges against Mr. Sharon and a possible change of the Israeli government,” he told reporters at the World Economic Forum annual meeting in the Swiss ski resort of Davos.

Ruling: 56 Islamic states can testify on fence
Jerusalem Post 1/23/2004
Fifty-six countries, including Afghanistan and Cameroon, can testify against Israel’s security fence through the Organization of the Islamic Conference when the case comes before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague on February 23, the court ruled on Thursday. This decision, which follows an ICJ ruling last week that Arab League members may testify, only further cements the deeply held belief by Israelis that the proceedings are biased and it is Israel, not the fence, which ultimately will be on trial.
Battle calls for calm after border clashes
Daily Star 1/23/2004
US ambassador holds talks with Hariri — US Ambassador Vincent Battle visited Prime minister Rafik Hariri Thursday and said that contacts have been made with leaders in Israel, Lebanon and Syria in order to guarantee that all sides exercise the maximum degree of self control. He added that there is no use in escalation and it is in the interests of all sides to contain the situation.
Facing up to the wall
Al-Ahram Weekly on-line 22 – 28 January 2004
Israel’s separation wall and threats of transfer have sparked a flurry of Arab diplomatic activity, reports Dina Ezzat— With just a few weeks to go till the Arab Summit the region faces escalating military tensions with Israel alongside old and new political and legal battles in the occupied territories. Whether the Arab Summit, expected to take place in March in Tunis, can deliver on stability for the Arab world largely depends on developments on the military and political fronts. And no one is being optimistic.,1280,-3660169,00.html
Israeli Official Discusses W. Bank Fence
The Guardian 1/23/2004
DAVOS, Switzerland (AP) – Israeli Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom said Friday that the Palestinians should return to the negotiating table because Israel is ready to make changes in the controversial barrier Israel says is being built in the West Bank to prevent terror attacks. ``The fence is movable,’’ he said. Speaking in an interview with The Associated Press, Shalom said Israel had pulled back similar fences on the borders with Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon and could do it again.
Jordan opposition to rally against wall
Al-Jazeera 1/23/2004
Jordanian opposition parties are to protest against the threats to Jordan by the Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to Jordan and to denounce the West Bank separation wall. They have announced that they are organising a march on 19 February in Amman.
Shalom in Davos: We expect better contacts with Arabs
Ha’aretz 1/23/2004
DAVOS, Switzerland – Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom said yesterday that Arab leaders are now more willing to maintain contact with Israel following last year’s war in Iraq and the capture of former dictator Saddam Hussein. Shalom said he would travel to Amman next week to meet King Abdullah in what would be the first visit to Jordan by an Israeli foreign minister in three-and-a-half years.
Abed Rabbo Rules out Bi-national State
Palestine Chronicle 1/23/2004
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM – Member of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and co-author of the Geneva Initiative Yaser Abed Rabbo on Wednesday ruled out a bi-national state in historic Palestine, saying that Palestinians were not interested in becoming “second-class citizens in one state.‰ Abed Rabbo made the remarks during a panel session last Tuesday at the World Economic Forum, held in Davos, Switzerland….Seated alongside Abed Rabbo, former Israeli Knesset Speaker and Geneva Accord signatory Avraham Burg criticized Israel’s peace-making efforts.

PM: ‘I won’t quit’; cops focus on Lod probe
Ha’aretz 1/23/2004
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon will resign if indicted on charges of accepting bribes from businessman David Appel, according to associates of the prime minister, Channel Two TV reported Friday evening. On Thursday night, the prime minister ignored reporters’ questions about the David Appel scandal, stating only that he would complete his full term….The police have in the meantime collected far more information than has been reported to date concerning how Sharon apparently used his government positions to help David Appel’s business interests – mostly concerning land deals in the Lod area when Sharon was national infrastructure minister.
President Katzav: No man is above the law
Maariv 1/23/2004
Says premature to talk of whether Sharon should resign until investigation is completed. 53% believe PM is corrupt. — Israel‚s President Moshe Katzav, in his first public comment on the possibility that charges will be brought against Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, said, “no individual is above the law.‰ According to Katzav, the issue of whether or not the PM should resign can only be decided after the conclusion of the investigation into the Greek Island affair.
Politicians try to change law on forcing PM to resign
Virtual Jerusalem 1/23/2004
Opposition leader Shimon Peres has set up a special party committee to discuss amendments to the current law concerning the prospect that a prime minister is forced to step down. Likud coalition chairman Gideon Saar is also trying to change the law. Dr. Menachem Hoffnung, an expert on election law at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, predicted to our reporter that Prime Minister Sharon will step down by September.

High Court: Don’t evacuate Hazon David outpost for now
Ha’aretz 1/23/2004
The High Court of Justice has issued a temporary injunction prohibiting the evacuation of the uninhabited Hazon David outpost near Kiryat Arba, Israel Radio reported Friday. The injunction will be in effect until the High Court rules on a broader petition brought by settler groups to challenge the legality of the evacuations, according to the report.,2763,1129318,00.html
‘Everything he says is just hot air’
The Guardian 1/23/2004
It was a rare stormy day in Tel Aviv yesterday. Gusts of wind swept through the bare concrete esplanade of Rabin Square where Israel’s most progressive prime minister of recent times was assassinated. People struggled with umbrellas in the breeze but most minds were focused on the political storm engulfing Ariel Sharon….Now opinion polls suggest that even the patience of his supporters is running out.
Sharon faces mounting pressure
Al-Jazeera 1/23/2004
Pressure has mounted within Ariel Sharon’s ruling coalition for the Israeli leader to quit if prosecutors indict him in a bribery scandal that threatens to overshadow Middle East peace efforts. In what some Israeli commentators described as a bid to divert attention from the scandal, Sharon was reported on Friday to be planning talks in Washington next month with US President George Bush on the stalled US-backed peace “road map”.
Battle of the left
Maariv 1/23/2004
The race for the leadership of the united Zionist-left Yachad party is heating up. Beilin calls for poll to decide leadership issue — The leadership contest between Yossi Beilin and MK Ran Cohen to determine who will lead the left is getting nasty. Earlier today Yossi Beilin called on his opponent Ran Cohen to cancel the leadership primaries and hold a poll to determine who should become party Chairman. Yachad is a merge between Meretz and Shahar, founded by Beilin.
Israeli police flee drug fumes
BBC 1/23/2004
Israeli police were forced to leave their offices after being overcome by fumes from confiscated marijuana. Their police station in Dimona, in the southern Negev Desert, stores all marijuana confiscated along the Israel-Egypt border, a busy smuggling route.
The economy is treading water
Maariv 1/23/2004
Stocks may be on a high, but the economy is still in the doldrums. —We are sorry to ruin the big party in the stock market, but it turns out that as yet there is no reason to celebrate, and the recession is still lurking. We are no longer in deep recession, but the economy is standing still, and at best moving at the speed of a decrepit turtle.
Can dialogue bridge Arab-Israeli divide?
Daily Star 1/23/2004
2 israeli rabbis attend cairo conference hosted by muslim clerics – ŒAs people of faith, we need to talk to and see each other as human beings rather than animals‚ — RAMALLAH, West Bank: On the same day that some 30 Muslim leaders wrapped up a conference in Cairo attended by two senior Israeli rabbis, Canon Andrew White, co-director of the International Center for Reconciliation and the Middle East representative of the Anglican Archbishop, and the Armenian Patriarch in Jerusalem filed a complaint of Jewish harassment of Armenians with the Israeli interior minister.
Controversial artist hits back in row with Israel over artwork
Middle East Times 1/23/2004
An Israeli-born artist at the centre of a row between Israel and Sweden over an art exhibit hit back Friday at the Israeli government, accusing it of trying to silence critics of its occupation of the West Bank and Gaza. In an article published in Swedish daily Expressen Friday, artist Dror Feiler defended his controversial installation at Stockholm’s Museum of National Antiquities, claiming that people calling it anti-Semitic were attempting to silence criticism of Israeli policy in the occupied territories.
Right of Reply / I do not support expulsion
By Benny Morris, Ha’aretz 1/23/2004
….A central accusation in the letters to Haaretz Magazine (”The judgment of history,” January 16) concerned the issue of “ethnic cleansing.” I will repeat my words, which apparently did not register (perhaps because of the misleading title on the cover): I do not support the expulsion of Arabs from the territories or from the State of Israel! Such an expulsion would be immoral, and is also unrealistic. What I said was, that if in the future, these communities were to launch massive violence against the State of Israel in combination with a broad assault on Israel by its neighbors, and endanger its survival, expulsions would certainly be in the cards….

Palestinian Student Discusses Barrier
Los Angeles Times 1/23/2004
NAZLAT ISSA, West Bank ˜ Mohammed Hussein is surrounded by walls. His family’s village in the northern West Bank is outlined in concrete. Workers are putting the last touches on a barricade overlooking his university campus, 45 miles to the south. And last week, he woke up to find 25 feet of towering concrete rising up next to his apartment outside Jerusalem. “That’s my new view — wall,” the 19-year-old nursing student says.
Former PLO “Terrorist” Rejects Palestinian Violence and Anti-Semitic Indoctrination
SFIndyMedia 1/23/2004
…”The world does not see the truth about what’s happening in the West Bank,” Shoebat told a Toronto reporter. “My purpose is to tell the West that they aren’t getting the real picture, that what they’re seeing is propaganda. I know the truth because I was there, I was part of it. And the truth is, we wanted to kill Jews long before the occupation. I wanted to kill Jews.” In the US, Shoebat had worked as a counselor for the Arab Student Organization at Loop College and supported anti-Israel activities. Now he wants to help provide a greater understanding of what is really happening in the Middle East with realistic suggestions on how the situation can improve. As an unlikely ally, Shoebat chose New York-based Rabbi Tovia Singer to aid in his quest.
Palestinians rally for Sheikh Yasin
Al-Jazeera 1/23/2004
Some 2500 sympathisers of the Islamic group Hamas have taken to the streets of the northern West Bank city of Nablus in support of its spiritual leader, Sheikh Ahmad Yasin, whom Israel has threatened to kill. The crowd departed from Nablus’ Old City al-Nasir Mosque on Friday and marched towards the centre of town.
Khair el-din Haseeb: The key to Arab unity lies in democracy
Daily Star 1/23/2004
Secretary-general of Center for Arab Unity Studies speaks up on challenges facing region‚s development — BEIRUT: It‚s been a long day for Khair el-din Haseeb, who leans back in his brown leather armchair with a tired smile. Aides are scurrying in and out of his spacious Hamra office,which is replete with large paintings, plush sofas and walls lined with books. Next to Haseeb‚s desk are portraits of each of his three children – a black and white picture of a serious young boy, two fading pictures of his smiling daughters.
Israeli Innovator Eyes American Schools
Forward 1/23/2004
Yaacov Hecht helped transform the school system in Israel. Now he has come to the United States to talk about the state of education in America. As the director of the Tel Aviv-based Institute for Democratic Education, Hecht has long been pushing the idea of “democratic education” ˜ schools and classes that are more participatory and progressive than in traditional educational models.
British MP backs Palestinian suicide bombers
Middle East Online 1/23/2004
‘I think if I had to live in that situation∑ I might just consider becoming one myself,’ says Jenny Tonge. — LONDON – A British politician sparked outrage Thursday by saying she would consider becoming a suicide bomber if she was a Palestinian. Jenny Tonge, the former opposition Liberal Democrat spokeswoman for international development, was addressing a pro-Palestinian lobby when she remarked that life under Israel could be intolerable.,2763,1129746,00.html
Tonge sacked over bombing comments
The Guardian 1/23/2004
Charles Kennedy has asked Jenny Tonge to step down as the Liberal Democrats’ spokeswoman for children following her claim that she might consider becoming a suicide bomber if she lived in the Palestinian territories. The MP made her remarks at a meeting of the Palestinian Solidarity Campaign [PSC] on Wednesday, and has subsequently insisted she did not mean to condone suicide bombings.
Israel Advocacy Coalition Targeting High Schools
Forward 1/23/2004
In response to what many are calling the sad state of Israel advocacy on college campuses, prominent Jewish communal officials and educators have settled on a new approach to teaching undergraduates how to defend the Jewish state: Start in high school. About 60 juniors and seniors from Jewish high schools in the New York metropolitan area turned out during a snowstorm on January 15 to attend a half-day seminar on the nuts and bolts of Israel advocacy.
World Bank loans may be in jeopardy
Daily Star 1/23/2004
Lebanon might well lose roughly $60 million in foreign loans- the majority from the World Bank – as a result of muscle flexing by top politicians. A nation-wide project that has been in the pipeline for four years and has cost Lebanon about $1.5 million in planning might be lost if Parliament does not pass a law to approve the grant before the Jan. 31 deadline.
Jordanian private sector committed to enhance trade with the US 1/23/2004
AMMAN (JT) ˜ To enhance the private sector’s opportunities in implementing and capitalising on the Jordan-US Free Trade Agreement (JUSFTA), the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the USAID-funded AMIR Programme held the third Jordan-US FTA Executive Retreat for the executives of the member organisations of the TIJARA Coalition, a public-private partnership created to promote the opportunities of the Jordan-US Free Trade Agreement.
Review of the Arab press
UPI 1/23/2004
The United Arab Emirates’ al-Bayan daily Friday accused U.S. President George W. Bush of inviting Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to “do as he pleases” by purposely leaving out any mention of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict in his State of the Union speech Tuesday…. / The London-based al-Quds al-Arabi also commented on Bush’s annual address, but on his call for democratic reforms in the Middle East. The independent Palestinian daily wrote Bush was “not serious in his threats on changing the Arab regimes and turning the Middle East into an oasis of democracy and respect for human rights.”…
Arab Press Review: Bush avoids confrontation with Zionist lobby
Daily Star 1/23/2004
A daily selection of views from the Middle East and North Africa, compiled and translated by The Daily Star
Israeli Not Allowed Out in Nuclear Detonator Case
Palestine Chronicle 1/23/2004
DENVER – An Israeli citizen accused of illegally conspiring to send 200 U.S.-made nuclear weapons detonators to Pakistan was ordered on Thursday to remain in custody while a Washington D.C. judge takes over his case and decides whether he can be freed on bail. Asher Karni, 50, was arrested on Jan. 1 at Denver International Airport after he arrived for a ski vacation on charges being made by federal prosecutors in Washington.
Jordan‚s MPs reject Œforeign pressure‚
Middle East Times 1/23/2004
Jordanian members of parliament have accused the government of introducing reforms to the education system at the behest of foreign powers, and instructed a committee to look into the changes. The committee will meet after the Muslim feast of Al Adha, which starts in early February, “to examine the reform program and make its recommendations,‰ according to chairman Adnan Hassuneh. The decision came after 51 deputies in the 110-seat parliament fumed against the proposed reforms in a heated four-hour debate last Sunday, attended by education minister Khaled Tuqan.
Iran Vote Crisis ŒPartially Defused‚
Islam Online 1/23/2004
TEHRAN, January 23 ( & News Agencies) – The head of Iran‚s Guardian Council said Friday, January 23, the watchdog is willing to be more lenient and reverse any “mistakes‰ made when it banned thousands of reformist hopefuls from standing in parliamentary elections.
Iran to Prosecute Al Qaeda Network
Washington Post 1/23/2004
U.S. Calls for Suspects to Be Turned Over to Countries of Origin — Iran said for the first time today that it would try a dozen suspected members of the al Qaeda terrorist network, but Iranian officials declined to identify the suspects, and the United States demanded that they be turned over to their countries of origin.
Egypt’s Akef calls for opposition to US
Middle East Online 1/23/2004
CAIRO – The new spiritual leader of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood called on Arabs and others in the Muslim world Thursday to oppose the United States, which he said was threatening Syria and Iran after having occupied Iraq. Mohammed Mehdi Akef, 76, and a member of the authoritarian old guard, was appointed last week following the death of Maamoun al-Hodeibi, who died a week earlier at the age of 83.
Bush Losing Support of Arab-American Voters
By James Zogby, Palestine Chronicle 1/23/2004
WASHINGTON – With the US presidential elections now under way, a new poll shows President George W. Bush losing substantial support among Arab-American voters. The poll, conducted in mid-January by Zogby International (ZI) for the Arab American Institute (AAI), surveyed 500 Arab-American voters nationwide, and had a margin of error of +/- 4.5 percent. According to the ZI/AAI poll, if the elections were held today, only 28 percent of Arab-Americans would vote to reelect the president.

American Democrat hopefuls sticking to pro-Israel policies
Ha’aretz 1/23/2004
WASHINGTON – Surprising results this week in the Iowa caucus have caused the American Jewish community, and supporters of Israel in the United States, to take a closer look at Democratic candidates who have up to now been trailing the pack. In past months, the Jewish community was preoccupied with then front-runner Howard Dean. It monitored closely what appeared to be worrisome comments made by Dean, particularly his reference to an “evenhanded approach” toward the Middle East conflict. Though the obsession with Dean obscured the other candidates, the other Democratic Party hopefuls did not forget the Jewish community.
Campaign Confidential
Forward 1/23/2004
O’Neill Observations: A story about President Bush told by former Treasury secretary Paul O’Neill in a new tell-all book is drawing fire from Jewish Democrats, including Howard Dean’s campaign chairman…According to O’Neill, at the first National Security Council meeting of his presidency, Bush expressed doubts that America could accomplish much on the Arab-Israeli front, saying, “I think it’s time to pull out of that situation.” When informed by Secretary of State Colin Powell that American inaction could lead to more bloodshed, Bush said, according to O’Neill, “Maybe that’s the best way to get things back in balance.” Dean’s national campaign co-chairman, Steve Grossman, pounced on the alleged Bush remarks.
‘One Man, One Vote: And Then What Will We Do?’
By Anne Gwynne, Palestine Chronicle 1/23/2004
To the British Guardian, in response to Jonathan Spyer’s article (14/01/04)
In an article entitled “Israel’s Demographic Time Bomb” by Jonathan Spyer, formerly Adviser to the Government of Ariel Sharon, The Guardian (14/01/04) ran this heading, ‘Jews risk becoming a minority in their own land’
Go, for God‚s sake
By Dan Margalit, Maariv 1/23/2004
“The Prime Minster is leading a regime that makes George Orwell‚s 1984 seem like an oasis of democracy and good government. Cromwell‚s famous words “You have been here too long for any good you may have done, in the name of God go‰ are as apt now regarding our PM as they were to the long parliament.”
US Jews and foreign policy
By William Fisher, Middle East Times 1/23/2004
There‚s an old Jewish saying about what happens when you get three rabbis in a room. You get four opinions∑ at least.
This truism is a useful guide to the complex way in which the interests of American Jews is reflected ˆ if at all ˆ in US foreign policy.
Moral decay and Benny Morris
By Ali Abunimah, Daily Star 1/23/2004
When does the banishment of an entire people become morally justified? That such a question can even be posed in today‚s Israel is dismal testament to the transformation of Zionism into what it claims to abhor. In two recent, extraordinary documents – a commentary in London‚s The Guardian and an interview with Haaretz – Israeli historian Benny Morris prepared the ground for Israel to justify any atrocity, no matter how much it transgresses human rights, law and decency.

January 22 2004
Budrus demonstration / Abu Ahmed released
International Solidarity Movement 1/22/2004
TREES NOT WALLS! Hundreds March to Plant Trees — Budrus, RAMALLAH] Hundreds of Palestinians – men and women, old and young, Israelis and Internationals from at least 12 different countries* braved the pouring rain today and marched to plant olive tree saplings where the Israeli government has destroyed trees to build what it calls a “Security Wall.” The aims of today’s action were: – To take back the land illegally and unjustly bulldozed for the wall (two weeks ago, a beautiful family olive grove) – To call for the International Court of Justice in the Hague to rule against the Wall – To show the Israeli Occupation Forces that the village will not stop their peaceful resistance, despite being shot, beaten and jailed.

Hague lawyer: ICJ not biased against Israel
Jerusalem Post 1/22/2004
Veteran lawyer at The Hague, Philippe Sands, said Thursday that he does not believe that the International Court of Justice is biased against Israel and that the court will issue a ruling that does not disregard political considerations surrounding the West Bank security fence. “There are interests on the court that will be sympathetic to the Palestinian view and there are interests that will be sympathetic to the Israeli view,” Sands told The Jerusalem Post. “There may be judges with predispositions one way or another, but I hope these will be set aside and that the court will proceed independently.”
Shaath: Talks with Israel need international interference
Jerusalem Times 1/22/2004
Nabil Shaath, Minister for Foreign Affairs, called Tuesday for an immediate resumption of negotiations with Israel. Shaath in an official visit to Moscow, said the Palestinians are ready for immediate talks with Israel. [If unable to access this page, go to: then enter or paste this address: – Ed.]
Palestine Economy in brief
Jerusalem Times 1/22/2004
Court orders PIB former chairman to pay debt: Ramallah‚s First Court ordered on January 18 that Issam Abu Issa, former chairman and general manager of Palestine International Bank, should pay back over $34 million for money he took from the bank, as well as for damages and court fees…. / PA faces economic crisis: The Palestinian Authority is facing an unprecedented economic crisis and may be unable to meet its February payroll, said Minister of National Economy Maher Masri…./ Alaqsa Fund allocates $11m to cushion adverse effects of separation wall: The Management Committee of the Alaqsa and Alquds Funds has endorsed an allocation of US$ 20 million to finance educational, health and water supply projects for the people of Palestine affected by the separation wall….[If unable to access this page, go to: then enter or paste this address: – Ed.]
Ireland, UNDP form partnership to provide assistance to communities affected by wall
Jerusalem Times 1/22/2004
While a great deal has been said and written about the separation barrier constructed by the Government of Israel, and its horrendous effects on the lives of many Palestinians, the Government of Ireland has formed a partnership with UNDP‚s Programme of Assistance to the Palestinian People (PAPP) to do something about it. [If unable to access this page, go to: then enter or paste this address: – Ed.]
Court dismisses Paz – Africa-Israel, Amisragas petitions against gas pipeline cancellation
Globes 1/22/2004
Tel Aviv District Court Judge Michal Rubinstein ruled that the tenders committee decision was reasonable and free of unrelated considerations. — The Tel Aviv District Court today dismissed petitions by the Paz Oil Company – Africa-Israel Investments (TASE:AFIL) consortium and Amisragas against the inter-ministerial tenders committee for natural gas to call off the international tender for the natural gas pipeline project infrastructure. The tender was published in April 2001.
Tourist entries from France up 47% in 2003
Globes 1/22/2004
Tourist entries from Great Britain rose 26% to 13,341 in December 2003. — The number of tourists visiting Israel from France rose 47% in 2003, and the number of tourists from the US rose 28%, compared with 2002.
Russian co Altek to own 60% of Dimona silica factory
Globes 1/22/2004
Construction of the factory will take two years. 1,200 workers will be employed in construction, and the factory will have 200 employees. — Sources inform “Globes‰ that that Russian industrial concern Altek will own 60% of the new silica factory to be built in Dimona. Altek has 15,000 employees. Ephraim Feinblum, who initiated the venture, will own the other 40%.,3604,1128176,00.html
Tom Hurndall
The Guardian 1/22/2004
An aspiring photojournalist and committed peace activist — In the spring of 2002, Tom Hurndall made a journey around Europe, which then took him on to Egypt and Jordan. He was young, a soon-to-be student, interested in philosophy – and most interested in the contrast between cultures. It was a formative experience. Indeed, an abiding image for his friends is of Tom, who has died aged 22, on his motorcycle, cigarette in hand, riding into the Egyptian desert.
Palestinian Resistance Activists Yearn For Hajj
Islam Online 1/22/2004
GAZA CITY, January 22 ( ˆ Probably what afflicts Palestinian resistance activists more than Israel‚s state-of-the-art war machine, is their inability to make it for Saudi Arabia to perform hajj. Said Siam, a 47-year-old Palestinian activist, is one of hundreds yearning for the spiritual journey, which physically and financially able Muslims should make once in a lifetime. The major obstacle standing in the way of the long-cherished dream is the decade-old Israeli occupation.

‘Janes’: US gearing for showdown with Syria
Jerusalem Post 1/22/2004
LONDON ˆ US Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld is considering provoking a military confrontation with Syria by attacking Hizbullah bases near the Syrian border in Lebanon, according to the authoritative London-based Jane’s Intelligence Digest. In an article to be published on Friday, the journal said multi-faceted US attacks, which would be conducted within the framework of the global war on terrorism, are likely to focus on Hizbullah bases in the Bekaa Valley of eastern Lebanon.
Former detainee sues U.S. for allegedly sending him to Syria, where he was tortured
San Francisco Chronicle 1/22/2004
A Syrian-born Canadian who the U.S. government said had links to al-Qaida sued American officials on Thursday, accusing them of sending him to Syria, where he was interrogated and tortured. The civil rights lawsuit filed in Brooklyn federal court says Mahar Arar was illegally seized at Kennedy International Airport in September 2002 while he was changing planes on his way to Canada from Tunisia.
The heart breaks
By Gideon Levy, Ha’aretz 1/22/2004
Na’im Araj awakens every day at 4 A.M., leaves quietly by the glass door in the living room that leads directly to the cemetery, and goes to his son’s grave, just to be with him. After sunrise, his brother comes and takes him, for his own sake, away from there. “Mohammed, Mohammed,” he hears him saying. But even when they’ve left the cemetery, glimpses of the dead boy are everywhere. The crowded camp cemetery is visible from the window of the house. There in the middle of a row of headstones, where olive and myrtle branches cover the freshly turned earth, is Mohammed’s grave. The father need but look out the window to see it. An advantage of sorts that goes with living in the last house in a refugee camp, across from the cemetery. Mohammed Araj was six and a half, and carefully protected by his father; even on the day he died, he hadn’t been to school, lest something bad happen to him. His father permitted him to go only as far as the front steps, and Mohammed did as his father told him. But it wasn’t enough: The soldier emerged from the alley between their house and the cemetery at the edge of Balata camp, and shot him once, straight to the heart.
A Tyrant is Taking Root Here
Palestine Chronicle/Ha’aretz 1/23/2004
The separation fence folly is turning into one of the worst scandals in which an Israeli government has become entangled. And it’s not because of the political motive: Sharon has engaged yet worse maneuvers to undermine prospects for an agreement, and to perpetuate Israel’s destructive nonaction. The fence/wall is such an egregious scandal because of the heedless manner in which a decision was reached to build it. There was never a substantive discussion about it; nor were its negative global implications forecasted. After every last word is said about Sharon’s actions and mistakes, the fence and its outrageous manner of construction will remain as a stark symbol of the brawny methods, and reckless disregard of results, of one-man rule.
Putting Israel’s weapons above the law
By Hasan Abu Nimah, Electronic Intifada 1/22/2004
Talk of ridding the Middle East of “weapons of mass destruction” (WMD) has been heard for years, but no efforts have been made to bring this closer. Whenever Arab states raised the issue, for example at the United Nations, instantly doubt would be cast on their motives, and their efforts would be perceived as a veiled attempt to point fingers at Israel, which is known to have huge arsenals of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons.
The One-State Solution: Palestine-Israel
By Virginia Tilley, SFIndyMedia 1/22/2004
The one-state solution is the only one that the international community can responsibly now entertain. — “There are different kinds of minorities. The notion of an Egyptian state for the Egyptians, a Jewish state for the Jews, simply flies in the face of reality. What we require is a rethinking of the present in terms of coexistence and porous borders.” – Edward Said, 1999
The man who knows too much
By Sara Leibovich-Dar, Ha’aretz 1/22/2004
[David Spector provided the videotapes broadcast by Israel’s Channel 2, 1/12/2004, which implicated Sharon’s sons in the ‘Greek Island’ bribery scandal.] David Spector and Ariel Sharon first met in 1999, when Spector helped Sharon defeat Ehud Olmert, then mayor of Jerusalem and Sharon’s great rival in the race for the leadership of the Likud Party. Morale at Sharon’s headquarters was rock-bottom. Sharon’s aides were concerned that Olmert would get thousands of Haredim (ultra-Orthodox Jews), his political allies in Jerusalem, to register for the Likud and vote for him. Spector, highly experienced in giving strategic and tactical advice, was perceived by the Sharon team as the right man in the right place. Spector’s chief advocate and the person responsible for the fateful match was attorney Dov Weisglass, then Sharon’s lawyer and personal friend and today his bureau chief. Weisglass knew Spector from their work together in the service of the mass-circulation daily Yedioth Ahronoth in a wiretapping affair. Weisglass represented Haim Rosenberg, the paper’s administrative director. Since 1993, Spector had provided the paper with information protection against its longtime rival, Ma’ariv, and its publisher, Ofer Nimrodi.
Time to remember
By Ghada Karmi, Al-Ahram Weekly on-line 22 – 28 January 2004
Whatever the discursive niceties it is important to realise that Israel is Zionist, and that Zionism displaces and kills — For those who have forgotten or never understood what Zionism is about two recently published pieces will make salutary reading. The first is an interview with the Israeli historian, Benny Morris, published in the Israeli daily Haaretz on 4 January. The second is an article by Morris in the 14 January edition of The Guardian. In both Morris explains, with breathtaking candour, what the Zionist project has entailed. Few Zionists outside the ranks of the extreme right have been prepared to be so brutally honest. Morris not only claims a leftist position but, more significantly, was the first to expose the circumstances of Israel’s creation. Using Israel state archives for his groundbreaking 1987 book on the birth of the Palestinian refugee problem, he was hailed as a courageous revisionist historian.

Israelis kill Palestinian child in Gaza:

A Palestinian child has been shot dead by Israeli troops in the Gaza Strip near the border fence with Israel, Palestinian medics have said.

Child sobs for dead mother:

A Palestinian woman, 31, was fatally shot in the head during the military operation, hospital officials said. Her sister and another relative, a 13-year-old boy, were wounded.
In Pictures: Erez Crossing, Gaza Strip
Photo essay on the impact of Israeli crossing restrictions
Jordanian Experts Fix Temple Mount Bulge
The Jewish Week 1/23/2004
Jordanian experts have completed a year-long renovation project on the southern wall of the Temple Mount compound to fix a controversial bulge caused by centuries of erosion, the Jordanian minister of Religious Affairs said Monday. Ahmad Helayel told the official Petra news agency that the restoration cost 100,000 Jordanian dinars, or $140,000, according to the Associated Press.

No Exit
Harpers Magazine 1/2/2004
From an interview with Israeli soldiers (who are identified by pseudonyms) conducted by Israeli journalist Uri Blau and printed in Kol Ha ’Ir, a Jerusalem weekly, in September 2001. Translated from the Hebrew by Tal Haran. Originally from April, 2002. — Uri Blau: What is the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word “territories”? Roi [nineteen, paratrooper, serving in Hebron for the past six months]: The first thing that comes to my mind is children throwing Molotov cocktails. Basically, you should shoot them in the legs and you don’t.
Palestinian rights curtailed by high fence
By Dr. Hussein Abdulmunin Amery, Gulf News
What do names or descriptions like “illegal settlements”, “security wall”, “Israeli Defence Force” and “rubber bullets” have in common? These and others like them serve to legitimise Israeli conduct and to minimise the impact of Israeli killings.
The graphic terminology offers softer mental frames and tinted lenses through which consumers of the news can view and understand the Arab Israeli
WTO Chief Calls Saudi Arabia’s Entry into WTO an “Imminent Reality”
US Embassy, Japan 1/22/2004
World Trade Organization Director-General Supachai Panitchpakdi said there is a “realistic chance” that Saudi Arabia will join the WTO before the end of 2004. Panitchpakdi made that statement in a speech to the Jeddah Economic Forum in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia January 19. Following is the transcript of his speech…

‘Right to fight for their rights in Palestine’
By Anne Gwynne, icWales 1/22/2004
I WAS in Nablus as a journalist, not as a “gran” – honourable though that role is.
In the Zionist-dominated media any journalist who reports the truth is dubbed a “militant” voice. What word, then, shall we use for Zionists?
Second, I did not spend “my life with Hamas” – I carried out a unique series of interviews with resistance members, a task I feel was worthwhile and important in dispelling the lies which have become accepted about their aims and philosophy.
Will you head your story “Son gives insight into life with the Tories” if you were to carry out a series of interviews with Michael Howard?
US on alert over Middle East shuffles
Asia Times 1/22/2004
On January 6, Syrian President Bashar Assad began a landmark visit to Ankara. It was only six years ago that these countries were at the brink of a war when Ankara accused Damascus of sheltering Kurdish militants. This crisis was averted when Damascus expelled Abdullah Ocalan, the leader of the Kurdish guerrilla group known as the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, after having offered him sanctuary for nearly two decades. This was one year after Turkey and Israel had signed a military cooperation agreement, and Syria wanted to avoid having two enemies on its borders. Since then, the two countries have been pursuing better diplomatic relations.
Palestinian boy killed, two hurt by IDF fire near Gaza fence
Ha’aretz 1/22/2004
An 11-year-old Palestinian boy was shot dead and two other youths were wounded by gunfire from Israel Defense Forces troops in the Gaza Strip on Thursday, Palestinian sources said. Mohsan Daur was one of a group of youths from the Jabalya refugee camp who came under fire, sources said, close to the border fence into Israel. The 12-year-old and the 16-year-old wounded in the incident were taken to Barzilai Medical Center in Ashkelon for treatment.
Palestinian shot dead in Gaza Strip as clashes reported in Nablus
Al-Bawaba 1/22/2004
A Palestinian on Thursday was shot dead and two others wounded as Israeli occupying forces, stationed to the east of the northern Gaza Strip refugee camp of Jabalia opened fire near a local grave yard, Palestinian medical sources said. The Israeli Army reported that in another incident on Thursday two Palestinian boys were shot by troops, as they approached the “security fence” that surrounds the Gaza Strip.
Israeli bulldozers flatten 30 houses in Gaza refugee camp 1/22/2004
Israeli bulldozers flattened 30 houses and a mosque in Rafah Refugee Camp on Tuesday, Palestinian officials said, accusing Israel of systematically razing homes to widen a military buffer zone. However, Israeli military said it only targeted buildings from which shots were fired overnight at Israeli forces, but did not know how many structures were demolished. With the demolitions under way in the Rafah camp, frantic residents threw mattresses and blankets from second-floor windows as ceilings and walls come crashing down around them.
Zionist army drops camouflaged explosive materials that blast in children
Palestinian Information Center 1/22/2004
Rafah – Zionist terrorist forces in its declared war of annihilation against the Palestinian people were trying to inflict the biggest possible number of casualties and disabilities in their lines. The Zionist invading forces in Rafah recently withdrew from the southern Gaza Strip city and left behind a number of camouflaged explosive objects designed to harm unsuspecting, innocent children. Three children were seriously wounded yesterday when one such device exploded.
Settlers seize 2000 Dunams of Palestinian Land
Scoop 1/22/2004
Hebron: Two Thousand Dunams of Palestinian Land Around Harsina Settlement Suddenly Seized. – January 21, 2004 — HEBRON-Israeli settlers from the two large settlements of Harsina and Kiryat Arba, situated along Hebron’s eastern edge, have escalated their continuing campaign of annexing fertile Palestinian farmland lying between the two settlements. Harsina, like most Israeli West Bank settlements, sits on top of a hill. The new fence is being laid out about four hundred meters (about one quarter of a mile) downhill from the settlement’s current fence line. Guarded by Israeli soldiers and armed settlement security guards, other settlers operating bulldozers, backhoes, posthole diggers, and dump trucks have been speedily tearing up, leveling, and graveling fifteen-meter wide swaths of prime Palestinian farmland over which they are then laying down several thousand meters of new high so-called “security fences” equipped with electronic sensors.
Israeli Operation Destroys 36 Buildings In Gaza
Scoop 1/22/2004
Israeli armoured vehicles and bulldozers destroyed 36 buildings in a Gaza refugee camp during an operation that began in the early hours of this morning, according to the main United Nations agency helping Palestine refugees. The buildings housed some 81 families, or approximately 400 people, the UN Refugee Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) reported.

Israeli army withdraws from Rafah
ReliefWeb 1/22/2004
GAZA, Jan 22, 2004 (Xinhua via COMTEX) — Israeli army pulled back from the southern Gaza Strip town of Rafah and its refugee camp on Thursday after a 48-hour military raid, Palestinian sources said. The Israeli army had caused “widespread destruction” in the town, where more than 30 Palestinian-owned houses were demolished and vast areas of agricultural lands were razed, said the sources.
Israel continues to raze houses
The Star (South Africa) 1/22/2004
Jerusalem – Israeli forces have demolished houses in the Rafah refugee camp in the Gaza Strip. Continuing an operation to clamp down on militant activity, about 400 people have been left homeless in recent days. A Palestinian woman was fatally shot in the head during the military operation yesterday, hospital officials said. Also yesterday, Israeli soldiers tried to take down a building at a West Bank outpost for the second time in less than 24 hours. Security forces demolished the unauthorised synagogue on Tuesday, but settlers rebuilt the structure overnight.

Rafah woman shot dead in backyard
Jerusalem Post 1/22/2004
A Palestinian woman was reportedly killed and five other Palestinians wounded on Wednesday in Rafah, where IDF troops operated for the second day in search of tunnels used to smuggle weapons from Egypt. Palestinians claim that Mona Ismail, 31, was shot dead as she hung washing and baked bread in her backyard. The reports claim her sister was also in the yard and was seriously wounded.
Palestinian woman killed by IDF fire in Rafah
Ha’aretz 1/22/2004
A Palestinian woman was killed yesterday in the Rafah area as Israel Defense Forces troops continued to search for tunnels connecting the Gaza Strip with Egypt. The woman was identified as Muna Ismail, 31, a mother of two. According to Palestinian sources, she was hit by fire while hanging washing outside her home. Five other Palestinians, including her cousin and some youths, were injured by IDF fire.
Behind Smokescreen Another 400 Made Homeless
Scoop/Gush Shalom 1/22/2004
Gush Shalom sent out today a press release pointing out the cynical approach, typical for the Sharon governemt: “While the spotlight is on the theatrical removal of the improvised “Kahane synagogue” in a recently founded illegal hilltop settlement, 30 houses are being demolished in Rafah’s Refugee Camp, in the Gaza Strip, without allowing the 400 inhabitants to take out their few belongings.” Here follows the report on the Ha’aretz website…
IDF: Hezbollah attack in north not coordinated with Syria
Ha’aretz 1/22/2004
The Israel Defense Forces believes the anti-tank missile fired this week on the northern border, resulting in the death of a soldier, was not a preplanned Hezbollah attack coordinated with Syria. A high-ranking IDF General Staff source Wednesday night told Haaretz Hezbollah activists in the area apparently fired the missile when they noticed the IDF bulldozer passing through the perimeter fence to clear explosive charges placed along the border.
Hizbollah rules out escalation
Jordan Times 1/22/2004
BEIRUT (AFP) ˜ A day after Israeli raids on south Lebanon, the Shiite Muslim Hizbollah on Wednesday appeared to rule out a military escalation, but warned it would react to any new Israeli violation of Lebanese sovereignty. On the ground, Hizbollah fighters who are deployed along the volatile Lebanese-Israeli border kept a low profile as UN peacekeepers stepped up their patrols, correspondents in the region said.
Three Palestinians wounded in Nablus so far
Palestinian Information Center 1/22/2004
Nablus – Zionist invading forces‚ indiscriminate shooting in the West Bank city of Nablus today wounded three Palestinian civilians including a woman in the ongoing military campaign in the city. Medical sources in the city said that the wounds were all the result of live bullets and were medium to serious.
News Briefs: Curfew in Hebron camp, child killed in Gaza, IOF attacks Nablus, no Rafah tunnels found after devastation
International Middle East Media Center 1/22/2004
Soldiers impose curfew over a refugee camp near Hebron: The military today imposed curfew over Al-Arroub refugee camp north Hebron. Sources in the camp mentioned that the army entered it around 8 in the morning, sieged it and banned the residents from entering or leaving it. / Army kills a child and wounds two others in Gaza: Palestinian sources mentioned that the soldiers open fire towards some children who were playing in an area near Kibbutz Mifflasim in the Gaza Strip; two children were wounded and a third child, 11 years old, was seriously wounded and died later on at the hospital. / Army attacks several neighborhoods in Nablus, as military assaults continue: Approximately at 1am, more than 15 military Jeeps and a number of armored vehicles invaded several neighborhoods in Nablus. The invading troops besieged a mosque and banned the people who were inside it from leaving and is still holding them there. / Army fails to uncover the alleged tunnels in Rafah: After severe and heaving attacks conducted against Rafah, military sources announced that they ended their military assaults against Rafah refugee camp southern Gaza, the army claimed that the raid was conducted to uncover tunnels allegedly used by the Palestinians top smuggle weapons from Egypt, today, according to Israeli sources, troops ended the raid and admitted that they failed to uncover the tunnels.
Occupation forces close Nablus before the media
Palestinian Information Center 1/22/2004
Nablus – The Zionist army launched at dawn today a large-scale storming operation in a number of suburbs in the West Bank city of Nablus after closing the entire city before journalists and cameramen. Eyewitnesses said that large numbers of Zionist soldiers besieged the targeted suburbs and started a house-to-house search. They said that the soldiers ordered citizens to get out of their houses in the rainy weather and crammed them in one of the open stores.
Detention of UHCC‚s Ambulances & other ambulances for more than three hours at Howara Checkpoint
Jerusalemites/UHCC 1/22/2004
While heading to Azoun & Asira Al-Qblya clinic this morning Sunday corresponding to 10/1/2004, the Israeli soldiers put in detention for more than three hours UHCC‚s ambulances along other ambulances from different medical & health institutions at Howara Checkpoint.
Daily Situation Report in the OPT – Acrobat format
Palestine Media Center 1/22/2004
Daily Situation Report by Palestinian Monitoring Group – 08:00 20 January 2004 ˆ 08:00 21 January 2004 – detailed accounting of closures, curfews, demolitions and other daily operations conducted by the IDF in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

Israelis kill Palestinian child in Gaza
Al-Jazeera 1/22/2004
A Palestinian child has been shot dead by Israeli troops in the Gaza Strip near the border fence with Israel, Palestinian medics have said. The boy, named Muhsin al-Daur, 12, was killed on Thursday when soldiers opened fire at a group of youths hunting birds near the border, Palestinian security sources said. An Israeli military spokesman said earlier two Palestinian teenagers had been shot and wounded as they tried to infiltrate Israel.

IDF: Real test to come on outpost demolitions
Jerusalem Post 1/22/2004
Despite returning to Tapuah West Wednesday to level a makeshift synagogue erected on the remains of the one demolished Tuesday, the IDF glowed with pride over Tuesday’s operation. A small number of civilians and soldiers were injured in the evacuation of the Kahane-inspired synagogue, and the entire process lasted less than four hours. By comparison the evacuation of the Mitzpe Yitzhar outpost last June took three times as long; it was also a far bloodier and more grueling event.
Mass Demonstration Against The Wall In Budrus
Scoop/International Womens Peace Service 1/22/2004
Thursday 22 January, 2004 – Tomorrow, in Budrus village, West Ramallah, Occupied Palestine, there will be a mass demonstration against the Wall at 12 noon. The demonstration is supported by many Israeli organisations such as Rabbis for Human Rights and Anarchists against the Wall, and international activists from Denmark, England, France, South Africa, America, Canada and Jews against the Occupation New York.,1280,-3654628,00.html
Palestinians Protest Gaza Crossing Checks
The Guardian 1/22/2004
EREZ CROSSING, Gaza Strip (AP) – Palestinian workers staged a protest Thursday against stringent new security measures imposed by Israel at a Gaza crossing where a suicide bomber killed four Israelis last week. About 10 Palestinians were lightly wounded in the scuffle with troops, who fired rubber-coated metal bullets and tear gas canisters at the crowd of angry laborers in the third such incident at the Erez Crossing in four days.
Israel Bans Palestinians Aged 15 ˆ 45 from Traveling to Jordan
Palestine Media Center 1/22/2004
IOF Shoot Palestinian Mother Dead, Critically Wound Two Boys — Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) early Thursday banned Palestinians aged 15 ˆ 45 from traveling abroad via the Al-Karamah Bridge to Jordan, completely sealed off Jericho, stormed into Nablus imposing a curfew, and persisted with their invasion of Rafah, demolishing more houses, only a day after shooting dead a Palestinian mother and seriously wounding an 11-year-old and 13-year old Palestinian boys in the southern Gaza Strip town.
Israeli jailers want to keep Barghuti in solitary
Middle East Online 1/22/2004
JERUSALEM – Israel’s prison authority has asked that firebrand Palestinian political leader Marwan Barghuti be kept in solitary confinement for another six months. “The Beesheva district court was asked to keep Marwan Barghuti in solitary confinement for another six months,” a spokesman for the prison authority, Ofer Lefler, said. Lefler said the request was justified because “Barghuti is still involved in the planning of attacks in Israel,” from his prison cell at the Ohalei Keidar jail south of Beersheva, in northern Israel.
Offer detainees suffer medical negligence
Palestinian Information Center 1/22/2004
Bethlehem – Detainees in the Zionist military detention center of Ofer, in a message to “whoever is concerned with human life‰, have described the health conditions in the jail as “catastrophic‰. Detainees said that skin diseases were spreading like fire among the internees and that they did not know some of those diseases. They mentioned the case of six prisoners who suffered from red spots on their bodies that secreted blood and pus.
Occupation arrests focus on students
Palestinian Information Center 1/22/2004
Al-Khalil [Hebron] – Zionist occupation forces recently launched a series of arrest campaigns in lines of Palestinian university students and schoolchildren. The occupation forces were targeting university students in general and supporters of the Islamic blocs in particular in a bid to hurdle their educational march and to influence students‚ elections. Students in the Quds University in Abu Dees to the east of occupied Jerusalem said that the occupation forces had so far arrested more than 60 students supporters of the Islamic bloc and sentenced most of them to administrative detention without any charge.

UNRWA condemns a week of Israeli house demolitions in Rafah
ReliefWeb 1/22/2004
Gaza – A series of Israeli military incursions into the Palestinian-controlled areas of Gaza since 16 January has left 584 people homeless in the town and refugee camp of Rafah in the south of the strip. The fresh demolitions, carried out by Israeli military bulldozers, have added to the severe humanitarian crisis in Rafah, where a total of 9,970 people have now lost their homes since October 2000. In the Gaza Strip as a whole 14,852 people have been made homeless by Israeli actions since the start of the strife.
Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territories 15-21 January 2004
Palestinian Centre for Human Rights 1/22/2004
Palestinian women was killed and 7 civilians, including 5 children, were injured by Israeli shelling in Rafah / Israeli forces conducted a series of incursions into Palestinian areas in the West Bank and Gaza Strip / 60 houses in the Gaza Strip were destroyed, including 51 in Rafah refugee camp / More areas of Palestinian agricultural land were razed in the Gaza Strip / 700 donums[1] of Palestinian land in Deir al-Balah to be confiscated / Continued use of Palestinian civilians as human shields in Israeli military operations / Construction of the “separation wall‰ in the West Bank has continued and more areas of Palestinian land were seized / Indiscriminate shelling of Palestinian residential areas continued, injuring a number of civilians / 4 Palestinian houses in the West Bank were destroyed by Israeli forces as part of the continuing campaign of retaliation against the families of Palestinians accused of involvement in attacks against Israeli targets / Israeli occupying forces have continued to impose a total siege on the OPTs; a number of Palestinian civilians were arrested at military checkpoints and border crossings and a curfew was imposed on a number of Palestinian communities in the West Bank
Palestinians fear US will scale down peace efforts
Daily Star 1/22/2004
Bush‚s speech didn‚t mention Œroad map — Palestinians worried Wednesday that US President George W. Bush‚s failure to mention their conflict with Israel in his State of the Union address means he intends to scale down US involvement in the matter. In his annual address to Congress Tuesday evening, Bush made absolutely no mention of the “road map‰ for an Israeli-Palestinian settlement, nor did he use the words “Israel,‰ “Palestinian‰ or “Palestine‰ in the nearly hour-long speech.
UK Minister to Meet Arafat on Mideast Peace Push
ABC News 1/22/2004
Jan. 21 ˜ LONDON (Reuters) – A senior British official began a three-day visit to the Middle East Wednesday and will meet Palestinian President Yasser Arafat to discuss the region’s stalled peace process. “Achieving a negotiated settlement between the Israelis and Palestinians is a priority for the British government,” Foreign Office minister Baroness Symons said in a statement.
Deputies condemn construction of separation barrier, call for Yassin’s protection
Jordan Times 1/22/2004
AMMAN ˜ Deputies on Wednesday condemned Israel’s plans to continue building its separation barrier and called for immediate protection for Hamas spiritual leader Sheikh Ahmad Yassin against repeated threats of assassination by Israel. During their twice-weekly session, the Lower House adopted a petition, initiated by MP Abdul Munim Abu Zant (Amman, 2nd District) and signed by 37 representatives, urging strong condemnation of Israel’s actions in the West Bank and Gaza.

Wolf and Satterfield to visit Middle East
Jerusalem Post 1/22/2004
US Special Envoy to the Middle East John Wolf and State Department envoy David Satterfield are scheduled to arrive in the area in order to re-ignite the stalled US Road Map, reported Army Radio. Both the US administration and the UN have expressed concern over escalation of violence between Israel and the Hizbullah, and State Department spokesman Adam Ereli told a press conference overnight Wednesday that the Israeli northern border must be placated.

Despite Dispute Over Art, Israel Will Attend Swedish Event
New York Times 1/22/2004
STOCKHOLM, Jan. 21 ˜ Israel will send a representative to Sweden to attend an international conference against genocide despite a diplomatic dispute between the two countries over an art exhibition featuring the image of a Palestinian suicide bomber, officials said Wednesday. Israel earlier threatened to withdraw from the conference because of the exhibition, which its ambassador, Zvi Mazel, damaged when he saw it last week, claiming it glorified suicide bombers.
Musharraf warms to Jewish State 1/22/2004
Israel voiced optimism about a possible rapprochement with Pakistan after allegedly receiving an invitation for an Israeli minister to visit the Muslim state for the first time. Agriculture Minister Israel Katz told military radio he had been invited to visit Pakistan — a Muslim country with which Israel does not have diplomatic relations — as part of a United Nations delegation. But the Pakistani foreign ministry swiftly denied issuing any such invitation. “The government of Pakistan has not invited the Israeli agriculture minister,” spokesman Masood Khan told AFP.
Pak, Israeli leaders had planned ‘secret’ meet
Indian Express 1/22/2004
Jerusalem, January 22: A planned secret meeting between Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf and Israeli Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom in Davos may now be cancelled due to premature media leak, a local newspaper reported on Thursday. The two leaders were slated to meet in Davos secretly over the weekend where they are participating in the global economic conference. But Tuesday’s media leak, immediately denied by Shalom’s media advisor and quickly backed by a similar denial from Islamabad has clouded the possibility, according to the Hebrew daily Maariv.
Beirut blast great powers bias towards Israel
Middle East Online 1/22/2004
BEIRUT – President Emile Lahoud vowed Thursday that Lebanon would react to any new Israeli violation of Lebanese sovereignty, and denounced certain unspecified “great powers” for failing to take a stand against such breaches. A flare-up on the border with Israel started Monday after violations of Lebanese airspace by Israeli warplanes prompted anti-aircraft fire from forces of the Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah.
Maher: US still committed to roadmap
Middle East Online 1/22/2004
CAIRO – Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Maher said Thursday he had US assurances that Washington was still working for Arab-Israeli peace despite the conflict’s omission from US President George W. Bush’s speech. “Many were astonished that President Bush’s speech on the State of the Union did not raise the Palestinian question, but there are assurances from the Americans that they are still committed to the roadmap and its implementation,” Maher told journalists.
Arafat, Baroness Symons Reconfirm Commitment to ŒRoadmap’
Palestine Media Center 1/22/2004
President Yaser Arafat on Wednesday reiterated to the visiting British Foreign Office minister Baroness Symons Palestinian commitment to the peace process and the UN Security Council ˆ adopted “roadmap‰ plan, which has been deadlocked by the Israeli continuing reoccupation and aggressions against the Palestinian people. President Arafat met late Wednesday with Baroness Symons at his besieged and battered headquarters in the West Bank city of Ramallah.
Sharon defiant over bribery case
BBC 1/22/2004
Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon says he has no intention of standing down over a corruption case. “I am not about to resign,” Israeli media quoted him as saying on Thursday, a day after prosecutors said they were considering charging him. An Israeli businessman has been charged with offering millions of dollars in bribes to Mr Sharon, his deputy and one of Mr Sharon’s sons.,2763,1128438,00.html
Bribes claim threatens to bring down Sharon
The Guardian 1/22/2004
Ariel Sharon has been left one step away from corruption charges and being forced from office by the indictment of a businessman yesterday for allegedly paying hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Israeli prime minister’s family for political favours.
Majority Of Israelis Find Sharon Guilty In Bribe Scandal
Islam Online 1/22/2004
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, January 22 ( & News Agencies) ˆ The majority of Israelis find Prime Minister Ariel Sharon guilty in the latest bribe scandal, also involving his son and deputy, and believe he should step down if so proven. David Appel, a key behind-the-scene figure in the right-wing Likud party, was indicted by Tel Aviv Magistrates court Wednesday, January 21, for giving Sharon, his son Gilad and deputy premier Ehud Olmert hundreds of thousands of dollars to promote a huge tourism project.
Sharon says plans to stay on as PM at least until 2007
Ha’aretz 1/22/2004
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said on Thursday he would remain prime minister at least until scheduled elections in 2007. “I came here as prime minister and the chairman of the Likud party… a position I intend to fill for many years, at least until 2007,” Sharon told youth members of his ruling Likud party. Acting Attorney General Edna Arbel believes there is enough hard evidence to charge Sharon with receiving bribes from businessman David Appel, the Likud back-room wheeler dealer who was indicted Wednesday for offering bribes to the prime minister and his deputy, Ehud Olmert.
Analysis / What’s left out speaks volumes
Ha’aretz 1/22/2004
Constraints on the investigation of the “Greek island affair” – not yet formally completed – have led to an indictment that resembles a cryptic crossword in some ways. In detailing David Appel’s activities between 1998 and 2001, the indictment contains extremely serious information about the ties between wealth and government. But it leaves many black holes, so as not to interfere with the final stages of the inquiry.
Israeli press challenges Sharon
BBC 1/22/2004
Papers across Israel’s political spectrum are questioning the credibility of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon a day after prosecutors said they were considering charging him over a corruption case. Businessman David Appel was indicted for offering millions of dollars in bribes to Mr Sharon, his deputy and one of Mr Sharon’s sons in the late 1990s when Mr Sharon was foreign minister.

‘Ma’ariv’,’Yediot’ fined for breaking censorship
Jerusalem Post 1/22/2004
A special committee dealing with censorship has ruled that the Ma’ariv and Yediot Aharonot dailies severely violated censorship and endangered state security in their revealing reports about the botched IDF plan to assassinate Saddam Hussein. Convened for the first time in more than a year and a half, the committee made up of officials from the defense establishment, the media, and a public representative fined both newspapers thousands of shekels.
Israel’s Teva completes $3.4 bln purchase of Sicor
Reuters 1/22/2004
TEL AVIV, Jan 22 (Reuters) – Israeli drugmaker Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd (TEVA.TA: Quote, Profile, Research) (TEVA.O: Quote, Profile, Research) said on Thursday it completed its $3.4 billion purchase of generic drugmaker Sicor Inc (SCRI.O: Quote, Profile, Research). Sicor, which focuses on generic finished dosage injectable pharmaceuticals, active pharmaceutical ingredients, and generic biopharmaceuticals, is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Teva, the world’s largest generic drugmaker.

Japan provides urgently required $6 million in emergency assistance to Palestinians
ReliefWeb 1/22/2004
Jerusalem, 22 January 2004 – As part of its continuing effort to ease the acute humanitarian crisis in the occupied Palestinian territories, the Government of Japan announced its intention to extend an emergency grant aid of approximately US $6 million to UNDP’s Programme of Assistance to the Palestinian People (PAPP).
Treasury establishes team to prevent municipalities strike
Ha’aretz 1/22/2004
The Finance Ministry announced on Wednesday evening the creation of a special team tasked with attempting to head off the strike by the nation’s local authorities expected to begin on February 1. The local authorities had decided earlier Wednesday to begin a strike of their services in protest over the cuts to their budgets. The strike means that basic education services will not be provided, nor will there be anyone to greet the public at municipal buildings, welfare offices and youth and cultural centers. Garbage collection will also be halted.
Local authorities to strike, demonstrate during cabinet meeting
Globes 1/22/2004
Within a week, a task force, appointed by Minister of Finance Benjamin Netanyahu, will determine the financial framework for solving the crisis and outline a recovery plan for each local authority. — The battle between the Union of Local Authorities in Israel and the Ministry of Finance is heating up. All local authority heads and deputies will hold a demonstration opposite the Prime Minister’s Office during next Sunday’s cabinet meeting. Beginning the following Sunday, the local authorities will shut all services to residents.
Netanyahu submits watered-down ports reform
Ha’aretz 1/22/2004
While the Finance Ministry may be determined to bring about far-reaching change in the ports industry – Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has repeatedly described the introduction of efficiency and competition in the sector as one of his major objectives – the latest proposal seems a watered-down version of the original plans. The treasury now proposes to proceed gradually, with the first stage separating Haifa and Ashdod ports, to make them compete against each other.
Hollinger to examine sale of Black’s stake
International Herald Tribune 1/22/2004
NEW YORK The board of Hollinger International has stopped short of taking action against its former chairman and chief executive, Conrad Black, instead setting up a review committee consisting of all the company’s directors except for Black, his wife and Hollinger’s vice chairman, who is seen as an ally of the Blacks. The purpose of the committee, whose formation was announced after a lengthy meeting in New York on Tuesday, is to examine Hollinger International’s options in light of Black’s deal over the weekend to sell his controlling stake in the company to the Barclay brothers of Britain for $178 million.
Low or negative inflation expected in Q1
Globes 1/22/2004
The government bond issue schedule for February implies low inflation. The Ministry of Finance will raise NIS 3.5 billion on the local capital market.— Inflation in the first quarter of 2004 is expected to be very low or even negative, implies the government bond issue schedule for February. The Ministry of Finance debt management unit today announced that it would raise NIS 3.5 billion on the local capital market in February.
ATHICA explores a ‘PIECE’ of the Middle East
Athens (GA) Banner-Herald 1/22/2004
In an era when war, terrorism and political corruption run rampant through so many corners of the globe, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict emerges as a touchstone for violence and protest around the world….’’Piece Process,’’ the current exhibit at ATHICA: Athens Institute for Contemporary Art, opens the door for understanding, creating a forum for visual expression and dialogue for seventeen artists from across the United States. The exhibit first took place during the Fall of 2003 at Chicago’s ARC Gallery and the artists – of Jewish, Israeli, Palestinian, Arab and Muslim heritage – have succeeded where some of the world’s most shrewd political leaders have failed.
Ramallah mall provides much-needed social hangout for Palestinians
Jordan Times 1/22/2004
RAMALLAH, West Bank ˜ Residents in the West Bank town of Ramallah have embraced with glee the first ever Palestinian mall as a much-needed chance to forget the everyday woes of life during the Intifada. “I come here often with my girlfriends and the children, for a cup of coffee, a chat and to forget what goes on outside,‰ said Rima, 26….The mall’s general manager, Sam Bahour, said the $10.2 million venture was deliberately designed “to attract children‰.
Suicide bombers‚ families criticise Islamic groups
Navhind Times 1/22/2004
Reuters West Bank Jan 21: A suicide bombing by a Palestinian mother of two in Gaza last week has brought to the surface criticism within the Palestinian society of what one commentator describes as a culture of death. The people from all walks of life in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip expressed shock that the militant Islamic group, Hamas sent Reem Al-Reyashi to her death, leaving two toddlers behind. There have been female suicide bombers before, but Reyashi was the first to be used by Hamas and the first mother to carry out such an attack.
Bon Jour, Mrs. Arafat∑
Al-Bawaba 1/22/2004
From time to time, the name Suha Arafat resurfaces in various media reports ˆ usually as part of some controversial story, aimed at discrediting Palestinian leader Arafat. Obviously, such reports largely emanate from either Israelis or Israel supporters, but at times, also from sources in the Arab world who don’t see eye to eye with Yasser Arafat’s policies on different issues. Jean-Claude Gaudin, Mayor of the French city of Marseilles recently disclosed that Palestinian First Lady Suha Arafat received French citizenship.
According to CBS 270,000 Israelis emigrated between 1990-2001 to their nations of origin
Jerusalemites 1/22/2004
According to a report released by the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) a total of 270,000 Israelis emigrated between the years 1990 and 2001, among them 68,000 new immigrants from the former Soviet Union. The report that was prepared by the CBS found that between 1990 and 2001, 906,000 people immigrated to Israel from Russia. Sixty-eight thousand of them (7.5 percent) subsequently left the country. Most of the new immigrants who left Israel were not registered as Jews.
Lahoud, Greek president sign accord for stronger relations
Daily Star 1/22/2004
Tourism, trade top agenda for Stephanopolous‚ visit— President Emile Lahoud said he was determined to develop relations between Lebanon and Greece and described the accords he signed with Greek President Constantinos Stephanopoulos on Wednesday as proof of that determination. Lahoud was speaking in the Presidential Palace in Baabda after meeting with the Greek president, on the first of a three-day official visit to Lebanon. Lahoud and Stephanopoulos signed three accords to improve bilateral cooperation, one on tourism, one on agriculture and one on passenger and goods transportation.
Mustapha certain peace will prevail in Mideast
Daily Star 1/22/2004
Syrian envoy says Washington cannot ignore syrian peace offensive indefinitely – Former United States ambassador in Damascus attributes American reticence to the Bush administration‚s discomfort with Syrian behavior — WASHINGTON: “The more the United States realizes that the Syrian peace offensive is a serious one,‰ said Syria‚s acting ambassador here, Imad Mustapha, “the more it will be difficult for Washington to just ignore it.‰
Second phase of inter-regional gas pipeline to be launched next week
Jordan Times 1/22/2004
AMMAN ˜ Jordanian, Egyptian and Syrian prime ministers are due to meet here next week to launch the second phase of an inter-regional gas pipeline linking the three countries and Lebanon before reaching Europe. Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Azmi Khreisat told The Jordan Times that the Lebanese prime minister is also expected to attend the agreement-signing ceremony. The second phase extends over 370 kilometres from the southern port city of Aqaba to the Rehab Power Plant in the northern part of the Kingdom, he said.
Egypt, Libya lift travel hurdles on border
Middle East Online 1/22/2004
SALLUM, Egypt – Egypt and Libya lifted restrictions Thursday on travelers crossing their common desert border imposed two weeks ago during a diplomatic row, the border authorities said. A border official said “all restrictive measures” affecting Egyptian and Libyan travelers that were imposed January 9 were “lifted from midnight on Wednesday” (2200 GMT), atop an easing of measures in the last week.
Mubarak offers step-by-step reform
Middle East Online 1/22/2004
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak is holding fast to his step-by-step approach to political reform despite pressure to speed up the process since the fall of Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein. Mubarak outlined his program to some 50 Egyptian intellectuals on the sidelines of the Cairo International Book Fair late on Tuesday, saying political reform is the “cornerstone” of reforms underway in Egypt.
U.S. Policies Under Heavy Fire In Davos
Islam Online 1/22/2004
DAVOS, January 22 ( & News Agencies) ˆ With the World Economic Forum entering its second day in the Swiss ski town of Davos onThursday, January 22, the U.S. came under fire for unilateral use of force and economic policies that could set the world for a crash.
Top U.S. Senator: Iraq WMD May Have Gone to Syria
Wired 1/22/2004
BAGHDAD (Reuters) – U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee chairman Pat Roberts said there was some concern Iraqi weapons of mass destruction had gone to Syria, and Washington vowed to carry on searching for such arms in Iraq. Roberts, a leading member of President Bush’s Republican Party, said in Washington on Wednesday: “I think that there is some concern that shipments of WMD (weapons of mass destruction) went to Syria.” He did not elaborate.
Israeli nuke suspect awaits bail
Jerusalem Post 1/22/2004
Asher Karni, the Israeli citizen and South African businessman suspected of illegally shipping trigger devices for nuclear weapons to Pakistan, remains in a Denver prison after a decision on whether to release him on bail was postponed for a week. Chief Judge Thomas Hogan of the US District Court in Washington, DC, on Tuesday asked for additional information and review of the transcripts before ruling next Tuesday whether to release Karni on $75,000 bail.
Blair concern over Egypt detentions
Al-Jazeera 1/22/2004
The British Prime Minister has expressed concern at the plight of three British nationals held in Egypt and accused of belonging to an outlawed Islamist group. Tony Blair was responding to an opposition Conservative politician who asked him if he intended to involve himself personally in the matter. “This is a huge issue of sensitivity for the Egyptian authorities as well as our own,” Blair said in the House of Commons on Wednesday.
Press Review: Political climate in White House suitable for Sharon to implement right-wing plan
Daily Star 1/22/2004
A daily selection of views from the Middle East and North Africa, compiled and translated by The Daily Star
Military lawyer slams U.S. terrorism tribunals
Radio Free USA 1/22/2004
WASHINGTON — The U.S. Marine Corps lawyer assigned to defend an Australian terror suspect being held at the Guantanamo naval base in Cuba Wednesday criticized the military tribunal process and said it will not allow a fair trial. Maj. Michael Mori, who in November was assigned to be the military attorney for David Hicks — an Australian held at the U.S. military prison in Cuba — said the system set up by the Pentagon for trials of non-U.S. citizens captured during what U.S. officials call the war on terror was unfair.
Residents of As Sawahira ash Sharqiya village have many questions about their future
By Palestine Monitor, Jerusalemites 1/22/2004
Fifty three year old Mohammad Sarkhe looked over towards his elderly father’s house, just eighty meters away and asked himself if he would still be able to visit after Israel has completed its “separation”
Al Haq: Campaign Against Collective Punishment
By Al-Haq, Palestine Media Center/Electronic Intifada 1/22/2004
Al-Haq, the oldest Palestinian human rights organization and the West Bank affiliate of The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), recently launched a campaign to stop collective punishment.
Living War: Palestinians Refugees in Lebanon
By Stefan Christoff, Electronic Intifada 1/22/2004
The youth who play football on the small streets and narrow alleys of Bourj El Barajneh represent an entire generation of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon who live in a day-to-day low intensity war. This is a war waged against Palestinian refugees by the government of Lebanon. It is not waged through military campaigns and guerrilla battles as in the Lebanese civil war, but through policies and laws which are slowly choking the life from Lebanon’
s Palestinian refugee camps.
Arik Sharons Corruption =Mind Over Matter. If we don’t mind, it don’t matter!
By Anonymous, Place4Peace/Israel-Palestine Center for Research and Information 1/22/2004
If we the people do not mind corruption in our government, then it doesn’t matter.
Most countries take pride in the honesty of its politicians-Americas George Washington never telling a lie, not even after cutting down the cherry tree and risking a spanking.

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