siege bending, but not broken

From Ma'an: 40 trucks to be allowed into Gaza.

From Ha'aretz: Journalists and aid workers to be allowed in and out of Gaza.


Ma'an and Ha'aretz report on the shooting in Nablus

From Ma'an:

Israeli forces kill pardoned Palestinian fighter in Nablus
Date: 02 / 12 / 2008  Time:  09:11
تكبير الخط تصغير الخط
Israeli troops in Nablus (archive)
Nablus – Ma'an – Israeli forces killed a Palestinian man formerly affiliated to the armed wing of Fatah, the Al-Aqsa Brigades, in Balata Refugee Camp in the West Bank city of Nablus at Midnight on Monday.

The man was identified as 27-year-old Mohammad Abu Thraa, a fighter who had been pardoned by Israel as a part of an amnesty agreement with the Palestinian Authority (PA).

Nablus Governor Jamal Muheisin accused Israel of deliberately assassinating Abu Thraa.

The Muheisin confirmed that Abu Thraa had, as a part of his amnesty deal, spent time in the PA's Al-Juneid prison. After receiving a formal pardon, he would spend his days in his house, and then would be transported to the prison by a Palestinian Preventive Security bus.

The governor added that there is "no justification" for killing a man already pardoned by Israel. He called the operation "cowardly."

Hundreds of Palestinian fighters, mainly those affiliated with Fatah, have signed amnesty contracts, under which they agree to renounce armed struggle and spend a stint in jail in exchange for a pardon from Israel and a return to civilian life without the fear of pursuit by Israeli forces.

The Israeli army claimed that its forces shot Abu Thraa while attempting to arrest him, and that he died after being transferred to Beilinson Hospital in the Israeli city of Petah Tikva.

While no blood was found at the scene where Abu Thraa was seized, gunshots were heard immediately after the soldiers arrested him.

Meanwhile, Israeli forces seized nine other Palestinians during overnight raids across the West Bank. Sources in the Israeli army reported that they arrested residents of the cities of Jenin, Ramallah and Bethlehem.

***Updated at 9:39 local time

From Ha'aretz:

Last update - 10:52 02/12/2008
IDF troops shoot and kill wanted Palestinian during raid in Nablus
By Avi Issacharoff, Haaretz Correspondent and News Agencies
Tags: Palestinian, Israel News 

Israel Defense Forces soldiers shot and killed a Palestinian militant during a raid in the West Bank city of Nablus on Monday, the IDF said.

Such killings have become less frequent in the West Bank since Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas launched a security campaign with U.S. backing.

An IDF spokesman said troops entered Nablus to arrest a wanted man.

When the militant attempted to get away, the troops fired warning shots and then fired at his lower body, the spokesman said.

"He was hit and was transferred to an Israeli hospital, where he died of his wounds," he said.

The militant was identified as Mohammed Abu Daragh.

He was 27 years old and a member of the Al Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades, a violent group that has largely halted its activities. Most Al Aqsa members have received amnesty from Israel.