Tags: Palestinian | Woman | Kids | killed | IDF

Palestinian Woman, 2 Kids killed by IDF

Sunday, 05 May 2002 12:00 AM

The IDF expressed its "deep sorrow" over the incident and said it regretted the loss of civilian life.

The soldiers saw suspicious figures in a nearby grove and fired on them, killing the woman and her two children, the sources said. Palestinian radio reported that one Israeli soldier was slightly wounded when the bomb exploded near the tank.

The shooting occurred as Israeli and Palestinian negotiators held high-level talks to try to end the month-long standoff at the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, and Prime Minister Ariel Sharon headed for the United States.

Israel Radio reported Defense Minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer was directly involved in the talks.

There were also reports that both the Israelis and the Palestinians had agreed to deport for a period of time some of the gunmen holed up in the church, although the exact number had yet to be decided.

As negotiations continued, Sharon departed Sunday on a four-day trip to the United States, with a plan that proposes marginalizing Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat. Sharon will meet with President George W. Bush on Tuesday.

Palestinians holed up in the church turned over a list of names to a European envoy involved in negotiations, in a bid to end a tense standoff with Israeli soldiers, Voice of Palestine radio reported Sunday.

The list had been seen as a key sticking point in negotiations. European and U.S. diplomats got both sides back to the negotiating table after an impasse Saturday.

Arafat wants the militants inside the church deported to Gaza, a non-Palestinian source who insisted on anonymity told United Press International. But some militants in the church do not accept his authority and oppose such a move.

The Israelis said the militants should be deported, expelled for good or face an Israeli court. Israel wants to try some of them for murder.

Inside are more than 100 Palestinians, including gunmen. Israeli officials say some Palestinians are wanted for attacks on Israeli civilians, and took refuge to avoid capture when Israeli troops entered the West Bank town on April 2.

More than 85 people have left the church over the past month, and several Palestinian fighters have been killed.

Israeli troops also entered Tulkarem on Sunday after receiving information of plans to send a suicide bomber from the refugee camp into Israel.

Israel Radio reported that six suspected Palestinian militants were arrested, before Israeli troops moved out after spending several hours in the refugee camp. No injuries were reported, Palestinian sources said.

Meanwhile, Egypt Foreign Minister Ahmed Maher and Osama al Baz, a top aide to Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak arrived in the West Bank town of Ramallah Sunday for talks with Arafat.

Before entering the Palestinian territories, Maher and al Baz held talks in Amman with Jordanian officials concerning the ongoing Middle East crisis. Palestinian sources said the diplomats brought with them a letter of solidarity from Mubarak.

The letter reaffirms Mubarak's support for the Palestinian Authority and its chairman as the leader of the Palestinian people, the sources said.

Among the topics of conversation, the sources said Arafat would brief the diplomats on the situation in the West Bank and Gaza, the U.S. calls for a Middle East summit to be held this summer, and reforms of Palestinian institutions.

Copyright 2002 by United Press International.

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The IDF expressed its deep sorrow over the incident and said it regretted the loss of civilian life. The soldiers saw suspicious figures in a nearby grove and fired on them, killing the woman and her two children, the sources said. Palestinian radio reported that one...
Palestinian,Woman,,Kids,killed,IDF
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2002-00-05
Sunday, 05 May 2002 12:00 AM
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