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Palestine Today a service of the International Middle East Media centre, for Thursday June 29th 2006



Fighters blow hole in Gaza-Egypt border wall, abducts 8 Ministers, 24 MPs, Army arrests 14 residents in Nablus, 24 in Hebron , and invades several villages in Salfit,



These stories and more coming up stay tuned



Fighters blow hole in Gaza-Egypt border wall         




Thursday, a group of Palestinian fighters blew a 4-meter hole in the border wall that separates the Gaza Strip from . Two Palestinian security men were injured in the border explosion, while Palestinian security forces were ordered to lineup there to prevent people from crossing into through the hole.



The incident took place as approved the next stages of its wide-scale military offensive in the Gaza Strip.



Israeli Defense Minister, Amir Peretz, who authorized the next stages of the attack, said that despite the diplomatic standstill of efforts to release the Israeli soldier held by fighters in Gaza , a breakthrough is possible in efforts to pressure the fighters to release him.



On Thursday afternoon, the Israeli army targeted a vehicle in Gaza City carrying a senior fighter of the Islamic Jihad; the fighter escaped the attack with minor injuries, Palestinian security sources reported.



The army confirmed the attack but gave no details about who was inside the vehicle.



Meanwhile, Abu Mojahed, media spokesperson of the Popular Resistance Committees, said on Thursday that “ should stop wasting time if it wants to resolve the crisis over the soldiers’ abduction”.



In a press conference, Abu Mojahed made three statements, that made no clear indication of the fate of the abducted soldier;



Earlier Army shells several areas of the Gaza Strip, levels four houses in Rafah and bulldozes scores of dunams of farming lands also Salem Al Beih, 45, was injured when Israeli army tanks shelled farm lands at the eastern borders of city of Khan -Younis in the Gaza strip Thursday at dawn.




8 Ministers, 24 MPs abducted by , PM is not immune



Israeli troops invaded several areas in the West Bank late Wednesday night into the early hours of Thursday morning, abducting 64 Palestinian figures including 8 ministers, 24 lawmakers, and a mayor, announcing that arrests of Hamas-affiliated lawmakers will continue, and Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh is not immune.


Haniya is a Gaza resident and arresting him would require a major invasion to the Gaza Strip.


Local sources reported that Deputy Prime Minister Nasser Al-Sha’er  was abducted on Thursday, though Hamas denied these reports.

In a press conference, Deputy chair of the Palestinian Legislative Council Ahmad Bahar called for the United Nations Security Council to look into the Israeli offensive against the Palestinian People.

The arrests are part of the ongoing Israeli attack against the Hamas-led Palestinian government while Israeli troops continue their shelling of the Gaza Strip as part of the “Summer Rain” military offensive ordered by the Israeli Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert.



Army arrests 24 residents in Hebron                          




The Israeli army has arrested 24 residents from village and town around the West Bank city of Hebron Thursday morning.



The Army arrested Abd Al Men’em Mojahed, 36, and Yihia Shabanah, 18, in Hebron and  Mohamed Al Sowiti, 50, Isma’el Al Sowiti, 47, Bilal Al Sowiti, 19, Iyad Al Sowiti, 19, Bassem Abd Al Rassol, 23, Sobhi Al Massalma, 48, and another four residents in the town of Beit Awa, local sources reported.



Meanwhile troops stormed Dora village west of the city and arrested 6 residents. Only two have been identified so far as Imad Jaradat, 35, and Issa Al Shalalda, 27.



Troops arrested Khalil Al Kharof in the village of Ithna and Hussen Mossa in the village of Tarqumia . Troops also arrested Nidal Al Karnaz, 26, from Al Arob refugee camp near the city, local sources added




Israeli Army continues its arrest campaign in Nablus, invading and arresting 14 residents        





The Israeli forces continued the arrest campaign in the West Bank city of Nablus and arrested 14 residents, Thursday morning.



Troops and army vehicles stormed the city, conducted a wide-scale search campaign in the city, in the nearby Ein Al May and Balata refugee camps, and in Assira village before arresting 14 residents and taking them to unknown locations.



Among the arrests; Ziad Asfor, 35, Jihad Hashash, 17, Mohamed Abu Khiet, 22, Husni Al Bortani, who works as a Palestinian  legislative council member, and the mayor of Assira Riad Al Ali, local sources reported.



Also among the arrestees was Yasser Manssor who is also Palestinian legislative council member, the sources added.



Army sources said that this arrest campaign is part of the military ongoing operation in the West Bank to locate and arrest the Intifada activists




Army increases its presence in Salfit and invades several villages           





Israeli army troops have increased their presences in the West Bank city of Salfit after invading several neighboring village Thursday morning.



Soldiers installed military checkpoints on the main city roads and roads connecting it with nearby village. Troops also invaded the villages of Dier Istia and Zatra, local sources reported



Israeli settlers paint anti-Islam slogans in Palestinian neighborhoods         




Israeli settlers from Shafat neighborhood, north of occupied Jerusalem , scribbled anti-Islamic slogans on cars and shops in nearby Palestinian neighborhoods, according to eyewitnesses.



Sheikh Tayseer Al-Tamimi, the chief justice of Islamic courts in Palestine , denounced the graffiti, calling it a "crime that reflects hatred and hostility towards the Arab residents and a flagrant, provocative assault on all Muslims".






And that’s just some of the news for today in Palestine . For constant updates, check out the International Middle East Media Center website,  As always, thanks for joining us.  From Occupied Bethlehem, this is Palestine today, brought to you by Maia Willaims Carpenter, Stacie Miller and Ghassan Banoura