Israeli Army Attacks Arafat's Headquarters In Ramallah And Invades Gaza: Three Palestinuians Killed, Several Wounded

Israeli troops, supported by apache helicopters, surrounded and entered the
headquarters of Palestinian president Yasser Arafat with several tanks,
jeeps and bulldozers last night. Heavy gunfire injured at least two
Palestinian guards inside the compound that continued throughout the night.
This morning a Palestinian police man was shot and killed by Israeli fire.

Early this morning, the Israeli troops dynamited the Palestinian Ministry of
Interior, a 4-storey building within the compound, in a large explosion.
Caravans put up temporarily to house Palestinian security and police men in
the shattered compound were also demolished. Numerous explosions have been
heard throughout the day.

In the remaining parts of Ramallah the Israeli army has tightened the
already 3-month long curfew patrolling the city with APC's. Parts of the
city have been declared closed military area and ambulances delayed.

Overnight, Israeli troops invaded several locations in the Gaza Strip; areas
north of Gaza City came under heavy fire and shelling by Israeli troops. Two
Palestinians, Samira Dahar, a 25-year old woman, and Ahmad Labad were
killed. Several metal and car maintenance workshops were demolished.

The Israeli government announced today that they will stop "easing
restrictions on the Palestinian population", however for the past three
months, most West Bank cities have been under constant curfew, some places
for up to 90 days, with the curfew lifted only occasionally. This curfew
regime and the closed roads between Palestinian areas have distorted the
economy and all other daily-life activities, including the education of
children. In Nablus and Jenin children have not been able to go to school at
all this year due to the Israeli military presence inside the cities.

In the last six weeks more than 70 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli
soldiers; more than two-thirds of these were civilians who were not involved
in any kind of violent acts. 12 were children.