Palestinian-Israeli Clashes Continue, Teenager Killed after Talks Fail

Published April 5th, 2001 - 02:00 GMT

Clashes flared on Thursday between Palestinian demonstrators and Israeli troops in the Gaza Strip, where a 15-year-old boy was killed and five were injured. 

The violent confrontation followed failed political and security talks between Israeli and Palestinians. 

According to AFP, Ahmad Al Assar was shot in the chest with a live bullet near the Jewish settlement of Netzarim.  

AFP reported earlier that five Palestinian youths were wounded by Israeli army gunfire in clashes between the army and dozens of stonethrowers in the northern Gaza Strip. 

One of the wounded was seriously hurt in the leg during the clash at the Erez crossing with Israel. 

 

Meanwhile, Palestinian Information Minister Yasser Abed Rabbo told Voice of Palestine that "nothing was achieved in a meeting between Palestinian minister Nabil Shaath and Saeb Erekat with Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres in Athens." 

Abed Rabbo said a distinction must be made between Peres's intentions and the mandate he has from Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.  

The minister, said Haaretz, criticized Peres, saying that the foreign minister speaks the language of power when he is in the Middle East, but in Europe, he speaks the language of diplomacy.  

Israeli sources told Haaretz that the meeting was "long, deep and important dialogue."  

They added that it [meeting] was intended merely as an opportunity to exchange initial positions and not to negotiate.  

In the meeting, Peres spoke of the need to end the violence before peace talks could start again, echoing Sharon's pledge not to negotiate "under fire."  

 

 

NOTHING ACHIEVED AT ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN SECURITY MEETING  

 

Not only was the Tel Aviv security meeting followed by a shootout in which three bodyguards of the Palestinian officials were injured, but was a complete failure, either. 

Head of Gaza's Preventive Security Mohammed Dahlan said the meeting was difficult and that no agreements were achieved.  

He said the Palestinians demanded that Israel remove its restrictions on the Palestinians, withdraw tanks from around West Bank cities and stop the practice of targeted killing of Palestinian activists, according to Haaretz. 

Israel Radio quoted an Israeli official saying that the two sides had only reached a general conclusion to make efforts to reduce the violence and that they would meet again next week.  

Danny Naveh, an Israeli cabinet minister without portfolio, said that instant results could not be expected, but that the very fact that the meeting took place was a "positive step."  

As the Palestinian delegation was heading back to Gaza early Thursday, it came under Israeli fire.  

The Palestinians said that Israeli soldiers opened fire on them, injuring three bodyguards of Dahlan, his West Bank counterpart Jibril Rjoub, intelligence chief Amin Hindi and police commander Abdel Razek Majaideh, said Haaretz newspaper. 

Dahlan was quoted by reports later as charging that the Israeli forces had set up an ambush. The same statement was given by Hindi earlier. The Israeli side claims that the Palestinians were the first to open fire. 

"It was a deliberate attack after our meeting in the Tel Aviv region with an Israeli delegation," Dahlan told journalists after the incident near Erez, the main crossing point between Israel and the Gaza Strip. 

Among those taking part in the talks from the Israeli side the head of Israel's internal security service Avi Dichter as well as the commanders of the center and south military regions, Generals Yitzhak Eytan and Doron Almog. American representatives were also present - Albawaba.com 

 

 

© 2001 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)


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