Israel kills mentally-handicapped Palestinian; PA says Arafat should attend Christmas celebrations in Bethlehem
Israeli soldiers killed a 28-year-old mentally-handicapped Palestinian Monday afternoon near the West Bank settlement of Einav. Israeli troops carrying out searches in the area called on the man to stop, when he continued to run the soldiers shot him.
Palestinian sources reported that Israeli soldiers wounded two Palestinians, including an 11-year-old boy, in the northern Gaza Strip on Monday morning during the demolition of a house. Also Monday, eight Palestinians were arrested in the West Bank.
Meanwhile, Palestinians warned Monday of a "dangerous escalation" of tensions if Israel stops Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat from celebrating Christmas in Bethlehem for a second straight year.
The warnings came after an adviser to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, Raanan Gissin, said Arafat should not try to attend the Midnight Mass.
Palestinian Cabinet minister Saeb Erekat said Arafat had an obligation to be with his people on Christmas. "I think this will be a very dangerous escalation not only on the security level but also as far as the political situation is concerned," Erekat said, according to AP. (Albawaba.com)
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