1 Killed, 6 Wounded in West Bank, Gaza Violence

From Associated Press

A Palestinian man was killed when a tank shell hit his house, a Palestinian boy was shot in the head and five Israelis, including three workers, were wounded Tuesday in separate incidents in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Naim Badarin, 55, was killed instantly in the West Bank city of Ramallah, said Dr. Mahid Zatari of Ramallah Hospital. The Israeli army reported earlier that Palestinians fired at the nearby Jewish settlement of Psagot, and Israeli forces returned the fire.

More than 400 people have been killed in five months of fighting, which erupted after peace talks between the Palestinians and Israel broke down.

A 13-year-old Palestinian boy, Mohammed Mahmoud Helles, was critically wounded by a bullet from a machine gun near the Karni crossing between Israel and the Gaza Strip, said Dr. Moadiya Hassanein, spokesman for Gaza’s Shifa Hospital.


The Israeli military said that soldiers fired into the air to disperse a crowd and that no one was hit. The military said it was investigating.

The Karni crossing has been the scene of repeated clashes between Israeli forces and the Palestinians.

In the West Bank near Jerusalem, an Israeli woman, 48, was shot in the chest when suspected Palestinian gunmen fired on an Israeli van carrying female workers home from a nearby factory. She was hospitalized in serious condition. Two other Israelis were slightly injured by flying glass.

Shortly afterward, two Israeli soldiers suffered minor wounds in a shooting attack in the same area, the military said.


Also in the West Bank, Salim Akra, a 37-year-old Palestinian suspected of collaborating with Israel, died Tuesday in a Nablus hospital after having been tortured in Palestinian detention, Palestinian security sources said.

Palestinians appealed for international protection Tuesday, after a leader of Jewish settlers in the West Bank called on Israel’s military to assassinate or apprehend Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat.

Palestinian Information Minister Yasser Abed-Rabbo sent letters to the United States and United Nations accusing Israeli Prime Minister-elect Ariel Sharon of inciting the settlers.