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Palestine Today, a service of the International Middle East Media Centre for Thursday September 21st, 2006

Five killed and more than seven injured in the Gaza Strip. Five residents, including two University students, are taken prisoner near the West Bank city of Nablus.  These stories and more coming up, stay tuned.

The Gaza Update   

In separate Israeli attacks on both the northern and southern parts of the Gaza Strip early Thursday, five Palestinians have been killed, two of whom bled to death in Rafah when Israeli forces prevented ambulances from reaching them.  The remaining three were killed by a missile shot from an unmanned Israeli 'drone' aircraft’ — a type of weapon that is programmed to fire at 'anything that moves.'

Mohamed Abu Mo'amer was killed Thursday during an ongoing Israeli offensive in the northern areas of Rafah, in southern Gaza Strip, raising Thursday's death toll to five in the Gaza Strip, according to  Dr Ali Moussa, the director of the Rafah hospital.  Mo'amer died from bleeding to death after the Israeli army prevented ambulances from evacuating the injured by open firing at the ambulances.  Dr. Moussa also said that Abu Mo'amer had been wounded in his right leg and that some of the injured suffered severe burns, indicating possible use of illegal weapons.

Earlier today in Rafah, 45 year old I'timad Mo'amer (no relation to Mohamed) died of wounds she sustained late Wednesday night when Israeli army troops stormed northern Rafah.  During the invasion, seven were injured, five of them from her family.  Dr. Ali Moussa noted that I'timad Mo'amer suffered from severe loss of blood before she was able to reach the hospital, also due to the Israeli forces preventing an ambulance from reaching her.

Medical sources said that Mo'amer died after being hit with several live rounds in the head and chest.  She was injured along with seven others, two of whom are now in critical condition in the hospital.  The invasion started when several Israeli armored vehicles stormed the area, apparently in an attempt to seize a member of the Islamic Jihad.  Special army units kidnapped Salah Bahloul, the 'wanted' man, after ambushing him.  Troops also took six other residents, including five from the same family.  Also Thursday morning, three residents were killed after an Israeli drone fired several missiles at a group of residents in Jabalia town north of the Gaza Strip.

Medical sources said the three were Zidan Abu Rashiid, 17, Ali Dahroj, 17, and Sami Dahroj, 19.  The sources added that the three bodies were severely mutilated and it was very difficult to identify them.  The three bodies were moved to Kamal Adwan hospital near Beit Lahia, in northern Gaza. 
The West Bank Update
Israeli troops took prisoner five residents on Thursday in two separate incidents in the Nablus area, in the northern part of the West Bank. Three of the detainees, including two brothers, are students at Al Najah University in Nablus. Two other residents were taken prisoner in two separate invasions. Three residents from Doura town near Hebron in the southern part of the West Bank were taken prisoner at the military checkpoint near Nablus.
They were identified as Nafeth and Mohammad Ahmad Al Faqeeh, 23 and 21,  and Yousef Ahmad Ayed Al Faqeeh, 20. They were stopped at a military checkpoint near Huwwara town, adjacent to Nablus, while heading back home to their town near Hebron; they were moved to an unknown destination. In Karma village, south of Doura, soldiers abducted resident Wa'el Othman Awawda, 23, during a military invasion earlier on Wednesday at dawn.  In Surif town, north-west of Hebron, soldiers abducted resident Ahmad Abu Khdeir, 23, after breaking into his home and searching it. Soldiers also broke into and searched dozens of homes in the town and interrogated several residents, local sources reported.
Also on Thursday morning Israeli troops backed by twenty military vehicles and jeeps, invaded the West Bank city of Bethlehem, surrounded one home and arrested two residents, Palestinian sources in the city reported.  Troops invaded the city from  several directions as soldiers advanced into the city from the area of Rachel’s Tomb,  Beit Jala city, from Al Obeyyat area, Wadi Maaly area, Al Saff Street, Wad Shaheen and advanced towards Manger Square.

Soldiers surrounded a house near Manger Square and used loud speakers to call the residents out.  Two of the residents, identified as Hamza Hasa Obeyyat, 19, and his brother in law, Ahmad Awwad Al Sabah, 26, were taken prisoner.  An Israeli army spokesperson said that the two abducted residents are members of the Al Aqsa Brigades, the armed wing of Fateh movement, and has been on Israel’s Wanted list for two years.  In a related event, dozens of youth hurled stones and empty bottles at the invading forces in Bethlehem, soldiers fired gas bombs and rubber-coated bullets in return; no injuries were reported.
Meanwhile, undercover Israeli army units stormed a farm near the village of Abu Da'eif, east of the West Bank city of Jenin, and took three prisoners on Thursday morning. Eyewitnesses reported that a group of masked men entered the farm in a white car, pointed guns at three civilians who work there, then forced them into the car and left.  An Israeli military force invaded the city of Tubas, in the northern part of the West Bank and injured a number of civilians, Thursday at noon. Local sources reported that troops backed by five army jeeps, invaded the city, deployed in the city center and fired rounds of live ammunition and gas bombs at residents causing some injures among civilians due to gas inhalation.

Thank you for joining us from Occupied Bethlehem. You have been listening to Palestine Today from the International Middle East Media Centre, brought to you by Caysha Cay & Ghassan Bannoura.