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Palestine Today, a service of the International Middle East Media Centre for Monday September 18th, 2006

PLC cancels its session after clashes between PM guards and angry public sector employees, while the army continues to take prisoners and attack residents' homes in the West Bank.  These stories and more coming up. Stay tuned.

The Gaza update

The Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) in Gaza canceled its session on Monday after clashes between angry public sector employees and guards of the Palestinian Prime Minster Ismail Haniyya. Earlier, hundreds of angry government employees gathered in front of the PLC building in Gaza City this morning demanding their salaries, which have been delayed for seven consecutive months.

When Haniyya arrived to the PLC, the protesters stood at the three gates of the building and barred him from entering until his guards along with Palestinian security forces fired several rounds of live ammunition in the air to disperse them.  Haniyya managed to enter the building after facing difficulties while the employees demonstrating outside attempted to prevent him from leaving the PLC. According to the Palestinian news agency WAFA, two people were injured, identified as Saber Abu Al Laban and Jihan Al Sarsawi, as they were run over by the convoy of Prime Minister Haniyya while leaving the PLC building.  The session was canceled after Fateh members in the PLC condemned what happened and called it "gangs' acts.” 

Meanwhile, Israeli army tanks and bulldozers invaded the town of Abasan, east of Khan Younis in the southern part of the Gaza strip, on Monday at dawn. Two tanks and one bulldozer, backed by army helicopters, stormed the area and bulldozed farmlands, while tanks open fired randomly at a number of homes.  No injuries were reported.

A report issued by the Palestinian Ministry of Health revealed that Israeli authorities deliberately prevented the transport of cancer patients from the Gaza Strip to Israeli hospitals for treatment. The Palestinians must cross the Erez Checkpoint in the northern Gaza Strip’s Beit Hanoun to arrive at the designated hospital. The Department of Ambulances and Emergency for Gaza Strip hospitals reported that “occupation authorities refused to allow access of cancer patients from the Gaza Strip into Israeli hospitals to receive the necessary treatment.” A 50% decline has been seen in cancer patients allowed to pass for chemotherapy and other treatments unavailable in the Gaza Strip due to closures.

The Ministry of Health reported, “Twenty percent of the cancer patients in the Gaza Strip, including women and children, were receiving daily treatment in Israeli hospitals but now only half of them are able to reach these hospitals. The Erez Crossing has been closed since June 25th when Israeli soldier Gilad Shilit was captured while invading the southern Gaza Strip.

The West Bank Update

Two Palestinian police officers and one civilian were taken prisoner by Israeli forces in the West Bank city of Hebron and soldiers invaded the village of Dora nearby on Monday at dawn. Israeli troops stormed a Palestinian police station in the city of Hebron and took police officers Mohammad Taninah, and Hassan Islamiah, to unknown locations.  The officers were released later in the day.
Meanwhile another force invaded the nearby village of Dora and conducted a wide scale search campaign to residents’ homes and ransacked some families' belongings. Ahmad Barbosh, 20, was taken prisoner.
Also on Monday, Israeli troops attacked and ransacked several homes and took prisoner two residents of Beit Kahil village, west of Hebron.
Israeli soldiers stationed at an Israeli military checkpoint near Bethlehem, took prisoner one resident of a Hebron village. The Palestinian News Agency, WAFA, reported that soldiers took Ra'ed Mohammad Al Heribat, 29, prisoner after stopping him at a military checkpoint near Al Khader village, south of Bethlehem. Al Hereibat, a resident of Al Tabaqa village, south of Hebron, was taken to an unknown destination.
Moreover, Israeli forces invaded several areas of the Nablus district, located in the northern part of the West Bank, and took seven prisoners Monday morning. In Kofer Qalil village, south of Nablus, troops stormed and ransacked several homes before taking Fadi Ammer, 22, to an unknown location. Meanwhile, army jeeps and troops invaded Balata and Askar refugee camps, east of Nablus and took six civilians to unknown locations.
Meanwhile an undercover unit of the Israeli army injured Soobhi Yassin, 17, and Ra’fat Abu Sabeit, 27, after the unit infiltrated into Tulkarem refugee camp in the northern part of the West Bank city of Tulkarem late Sunday night. The two were transferred to Thabit hospital in the city for treatment, local sources reported.  Soldiers broke into and searched the home of Tha'er Al Mansouri during the invasion, local sources added.
Thank you for joining us from Occupied Bethlehem. You have been listening to Palestine Today of the International Middle East Media Centre, brought to you by Caysha Cay & Ghassan Bannoura.