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« Reply #75 on: July 01, 2006, 10:10:40 PM »

Hamas official decrease importance of targeting Haneya cabinet 

A senior Hamas official and a member in the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) decreased on Saturday the importance of targeting ministers in the Hamas-led government, saying that the ministers and the lawmakers will be facing their destiny.

"The flag would never fall down, but leaders can become martyrs or prisoners," Mushier al-Masri told Xinhua in comment to the reports that Israel threatened to target Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haneya if the captive Israeli soldier gets killed.

Meanwhile, the official also said that the three groups abducting an Israeli soldier last Sunday would not reduce its demands to Palestinian prisoners imprisoned in Israel jails.

"The militant groups would never minimize its demands to reduce its conditions towards the issue of the abducted soldier," al- Masri noted.

He added that the release of a 1,000 prisoners of those spending high sentences as well as Arab, Moslem and sick prisoners in Israeli jails, is a clear condition in order to free the abducted soldier Gilad Shalit.

Last Sunday, Israeli Corporal Shalit was seized in a deadly attack carried out by militants from Izz el-Deen al-Qassam Brigades, the Popular Resistance Committees and its offshoot Islamic Army on an Israeli army post near a southern Gaza border crossing.

"The abduction of the soldier is a step in the right direction in order to release imprisoned Palestinians in the Israeli jails," said al-Masri, expecting that Israel sooner or later would give up and accept the conditions.

However, the request was rejected by Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert on Saturday.

The Israeli army has launched an operation dubbed "Summer Rain" against the Gaza Strip to secure the return of Shalit.

Hamas official decrease importance of targeting Haneya cabinet
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« Reply #76 on: July 01, 2006, 10:14:07 PM »

Israel urges U.S. to pressure Syria on release of kidnapped soldier

Israeli Defense Minister Amir Peretz urged the United States on Saturday to pressure Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to help secure the release of an Israeli soldier kidnapped by Palestinian militants.

Leading Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth reported on its website that Peretz made the urge in a phone conversation with U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice on Saturday evening.

Peretz asked Washington to step up pressure on Syrian President Assad to use his influence on Hamas politburo chief Khaled Mashaal, who lives in Damascus in exile, to work for the release of the abducted soldier, according to the report.

The Israeli defense minister also said that Syria "cannot evade responsibility in the matter", the report said.

In addition, Peretz told Rice that the failure of the kidnappers to release the Israeli soldier was weighing heavily on the Palestinians, pledging that Israel would take care of humanitarian issues in the Gaza Strip.

Earlier, Peretz gave a green light to the reopening of a key Gaza goods crossing as of Sunday for urgent humanitarian aid.

U.S. President George W. Bush said earlier on Saturday that freeing the Israeli soldier was the first step and the key to ending the Gaza crisis.

As Israeli troops launched a broad ground offensive into Gaza to rescue the abducted soldier on early Wednesday, Israeli military planes flew low over a residence of Syrian President Assad in northern Syria in a bid to up pressure to secure the soldier's freedom.

Assad was there at the time of the overflight.

Syria said that its air defense forces opened fire at the Israeli aircraft and forced them to leave.

Israel has accused Syria of linking with the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas), which calls for Israel's destruct and now runs the Palestinian government.

Israeli Justice Minister Haim Ramon warned that Mashaal was a target of assassination, accusing him of ordering the abduction of the Israeli soldier.

Three Palestinian militant groups including Hamas' armed wing launched a deadly attack on the Israeli army border post on June 25,snatching the 19-year-old Gilad Shalit and killing two other Israeli soldiers.

The massive Israeli ground offensive in Gaza entered a fourth day on Saturday and is likely to be further widened as Israeli forces are ready to enter northern Gaza, a move postponed to allow more time for mediation.

Israel urges U.S. to pressure Syria on release of kidnapped soldier
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« Reply #77 on: July 01, 2006, 10:15:46 PM »

Key Gaza goods crossing to be reopened on Sunday for urgent aid

Israeli Defense Minister Amir Peretz decided on Saturday to reopen the Karni goods crossing on the Gaza-Israel border as of Sunday in order to facilitate the transfer of urgent humanitarian aid.

Peretz also decided to allow 150 trucks carrying staple foodstuff and medicine to pass through Karni every day for the next four days starting from Sunday.

In addition, the minister ordered to open a key gas depot to ease the severe fuel shortage in the Gaza Strip since the Israeli army launched a broad ground offensive into the desert coastal strip on early Wednesday to free a soldier kidnapped by Palestinian militants.

The Karni crossing, Gaza's main cargo terminal, has been closed along with other crossings since June 25 when Palestinian militants mounted a deadly attack on an Israeli army post near the Gaza border, killing two Israeli soldiers and kidnapping a third.

Humanitarian agencies have warned that daily necessities and fuel are running out in the Gaza Strip as the Israeli army continues its operation and shuts down Gaza border terminals.

The only power plant in the Gaza Strip and main water and electricity supply lines were destroyed in Israeli air raids during the past few days, leaving many Gazans without electricity and water supply.

The operation is the first major Israeli ground offensive in the Gaza Strip since Israel pulled out troops and settlers from it last summer after 38 years of occupation.

Key Gaza goods crossing to be reopened on Sunday for urgent aid
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« Reply #78 on: July 01, 2006, 10:17:35 PM »

Palestinian spokesman says no deal reached on kidnapped Israeli soldier yet

A spokesman for the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) said on Saturday that no satisfactory deal had been reached yet to solve the Gaza crisis triggered by the abduction of an Israeli soldier by Palestinian militants.

The spokesman, who did not reveal his name, said in a written statement, "All concerned parties are exerting efforts to end the crisis without disasters, but till now, no satisfactory solution has been reached."

"The coming few hours are crucial, sensitive and dangerous," the statement added.

"Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is still exerting utmost efforts to end the Israeli aggression and avoid the Palestinians more dangers and disasters," it said.

Israeli troops crossed the border and entered the southern Gaza Strip on early Wednesday in a bid to rescue the kidnapped soldier.

It is the first major Israeli ground offensive into the Gaza Strip since Israel pulled out forces and settlers from it last summer after 38 years of occupation.

But the Israeli army has delayed entering the northern Gaza Strip in order to give more time for mediation.

Earlier, Palestinian militants who held the Israeli soldier hostage demanded Israel release 1,000 Arab and Muslim prisoners jailed by Israel in exchange for information on the soldier, which was rejected by Israel.

Palestinian spokesman says no deal reached on kidnapped Israeli soldier yet
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« Reply #79 on: July 01, 2006, 10:21:37 PM »

Al-Awda Tells Israel to End Siege of Palestinian Areas
Arab News
 

NEW YORK, 2 July 2006 — Al-Awda, the Palestinian Right to Return Coalition, has strongly condemned the Israeli war crimes that are presently being committed against Palestinians, in the on-going siege of the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

In a statement issued yesterday, Al-Awda said, “We call upon the international community to take up their responsibility in protecting the Palestinian people from this aggression, and terminating the continuing Israeli policy of collective punishment.” Since military operations began on June 27, Israel has destroyed bridges, roads and water and electricity plants in the occupied territories.

“More than two-thirds of the people have been denied access to water and electricity. Children, the sick and elderly are the first to be affected. Israel, the US and European Union governments have put the Palestinian people under siege for the past few months as collective punishment because these countries did not approve of the results of the democratic elections held by the Palestinian Authority,” continued the statement.

The statement added that the Palestinians felt that the Israel’s withdrawal from the Gaza Strip last year was a means of turning the area into the largest open prison with the largest population of prisoners in the world.

The acquiescence of world governments to this indicates complicity in these war crimes.“Nothing justifies the Israeli savagery, including the destruction of water and electricity plants. Racist media coverage in North America has been trying to minimize the importance of these war crimes,” Al-Awda said. Al-Awda has called on supporters of the Palestinian struggle, the international community, activists and Arab organizations to demand an end to the siege.

The organization also called for the release of all political prisoners, including all elected representatives of the Palestinians, and an end to the Zionist occupation, apartheid policies and all other war crimes. Finally the statement also urged the US to stop all aid to Israel.

Al-Awda, The Palestine Right to Return Coalition, is a broad-based, non-partisan, democratic and charitable organization of activists and students committed to comprehensive public education on the rights of all Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and lands of origin.

Al-Awda Tells Israel to End Siege of Palestinian Areas
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« Reply #80 on: July 01, 2006, 10:23:53 PM »

 Egypt to Hamas: Sunday Morning Deadline
05:00 Jul 02, '06 / 6 Tammuz 5766
by Hana Levi Julian

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak gave Hamas terrorists until Sunday morning to decide whether to accept his proposal for the release of their hostage, IDF Corporal Gilad Shalit.


“The proposal is that the Israeli soldier will be freed immediately and in return, Israel will release prisoners in the near future,” said Palestinian Authority sources quoted by the Haaretz news service.

Mubarek has reportedly pushed Syrian President Bashar Assad to pressure exiled Hamas leader, Khaled Mashaal, whose headquarters are based in Damascus.

“At first, the Hamas leadership rejected the proposal, saying it could not rely on Israel to release prisoners. The Egyptians informed them that they would receive a personal guarantee from Mubarak for the future release of the prisoners,” said the PA source.

Hizbullah secretary general Hassan Nasrallah, meanwhile, urged the terrorists not to release Shalit unless something is offered in return. By Saturday night, Egyptian patience was waning and the terrorists were informed that their response was expected by Sunday morning.

At that time, Egyptian said, it would end its participation in the negotiations and the IDF would step up its military action in Gaza.

Shalit’s captors demanded that Israel release 1,000 prisoners and stop all military action in Gaza – however, they have not committed themselves to freeing Shalit in return. The demand was signed by the Popular Resistance Committees (PRC), the Army of Islam and the military wing of Hamas.

Complicating the picture is the uncertainty as to who exactly is calling the shots within Hamas. Sources close to PA President Mahmoud Abbas said Saturday that there is a power struggle developing between Hamas Chairman and PA Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh and the terrorists who are holding Shalit. The kidnappers are apparently operating under Mashaal’s orders from Damascus.

“Hamas political leaders outside are saying the decision is in the hands of its military wing inside Gaza, while the military wing is saying the decision is in the hands of the political leadership outside. Ismail Haniyeh,,,. appears not to have any say in what is going on in this regard,” said sources in Abbas’ office.

Israeli officials have repeated that they will not negotiate with terrorist organizations.

Egypt to Hamas: Sunday Morning Deadline
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« Reply #81 on: July 01, 2006, 10:25:34 PM »

Factions call on Arab, Islamic countries to boycott Israel
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The Palestinian Following-up Committee comprising national and Islamic factions on Saturday called on Arab and Islamic countries to sever diplomatic ties with Israel and boycott it.

The committee, grouping 13 factions and political powers, said in a statement that Arab and Islamic nations are demanded to act as soon as possible to support the Palestinian position.

The statement called on Arabs and Muslims around the world "to condemn the ongoing Israeli aggression on the Palestinians, which is supported by the United States."

Three armed groups, namely the Popular Resistance Committees, the Islamic Army and Hamas' armed wing Izz el-Deen al-Qassam Brigades, jointly carried out an attack on an Israeli army post southeast of the Gaza Strip last Sunday, killing two Israeli soldiers and kidnapping a third one.

The militants conditioned the return of the abducted Israeli soldier on the release of women and children Palestinian prisoners from Israeli jails.

Israel refused to negotiate with Palestinian militants and launched a large-scale military operation, dubbed "Summer Rain," against the Gaza Strip on Wednesday in an effort to rescue the abducted soldier.

Factions call on Arab, Islamic countries to boycott Israel
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« Reply #82 on: July 02, 2006, 02:18:38 AM »

EU president calls on Israel to free Palestinian officials
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Israel should release detained Palestinian officials and the Palestinian side should free immediately an Israeli soldier, said Finnish Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen on Saturday, whose country has just assumed the European Union (EU)'s rotating presidency.

In an interview with Germany's Die Welt newspaper, Vanhanen urged the Palestinian militants to immediately release the Israeli solider captured during a predawn attack on an Israeli outpost near Gaza border on Sunday.

Israel retaliated by sending troops into the Gaza region, launching airstrikes and arresting Palestinian officials.

Vanhanen said Israel must halt its military operations, free the Palestinian ministers and members of parliament and stop destroying civilian infrastructure in the Palestinian territories.

He stressed that negotiation is the only way to solve the problem.

Finland took over from Austria the rotating presidency of the 25-member EU on Saturday.

EU president calls on Israel to free Palestinian officials
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« Reply #83 on: July 02, 2006, 02:20:40 AM »

Haniyeh urges action on Israeli strikes

Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh has urged the international community to end Israel's offensive in the Gaza Strip as he visited the site of an air strike that hit his office.

The Israeli air strike hit Mr Haniyeh's office early today causing a fire but no casualties.

"It's an attack against a Palestinian symbol," he said.

"We ask the international community and the Arab League to take its responsibilities towards our people and intervene to bring an end to this aggression."

In an almost simultaneous air strike in the northern Gaza Strip town of Jabaliya, a Hamas militant was killed and another wounded.

The strikes are part of an operation launched by Israel in the Gaza Strip in a bid to force the release of one of its soldiers, Corporal Gilad Shalit.

The 19-year-old was captured on June 25 by a group of three militants, including the armed wing of Mr Haniyeh's Hamas movement.
Strikes confirmed

The Israeli Military, which has confirmed it carried out an air strike on Mr Haniyeh's office, says the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) will use "all means" to secure the soldier's release.

"The IDF holds the Palestinian Authority and the Hamas Government responsible for the recent attack on the soldier and his fate," a spokeswoman said.

"The IDF will continue to employ all means at its disposal against Palestinian terrorist infrastructure in the Gaza Strip to allow the unconditional return of Corporal Gilad Shalit."

Mr Haniyeh describes the Israeli attacks as "an insane policy".

Mediation efforts led by Egypt and Palestinian leader Mahmud Abbas to secure the release of the soldier have so far failed.

Israel is refusing to meet the demands of the captors, who say they want the Jewish state to free 1,000 prisoners.

Haniyeh urges action on Israeli strikes
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« Reply #84 on: July 02, 2006, 02:24:08 AM »

Iran slams US for violating Palestinians' rights

Sunday, July 02, 2006 - ©2005 IranMania.com
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Archived Picture - According to an IRNA report, Deputy foreign minister for legal and international affairs Seyed Abbas Araqchi strongly criticized the US and deplored that as a permanent member of the UN Security Council, US fails to comply with its commitment and constantly violates Palestinian rights by misusing its right of veto.

LONDON, July 2 (IranMania) - According to an IRNA report, Deputy foreign minister for legal and international affairs Seyed Abbas Araqchi strongly criticized the US and deplored that as a permanent member of the UN Security Council, US fails to comply with its commitment and constantly violates Palestinian rights by misusing its right of veto.

The Iranian deputy foreign minister made the remark at the UNSC urgent meeting on the latest crime committed by the 'Zionist' regime in Gaza Strip, which was held in response to a call by Iran and a number of Arab states.

He said that the 'Zionists' escaping punishment for their acts undoubtedly accounts for the continued trend of such crimes.

Araqchi appreciated the UNSC meeting held to discuss such a critical issue threatening global security and peace and said that the international community once more witnessed another military attack launched by the 'Zionists' against the innocent people of Palestine, in complete violation of the basic principles of international rules.

He referred to the major cases of recent crimes of the 'Zionist' regime in their attack on Gaza Strip, during which they hit civilian infrastructures, including bridges as well as its only power plant, and dismissed the Zionists pretext as baseless, given the disastrous condition in the occupied territories.

"No excuse can justify the acts of the 'Zionist' forces, which blatantly violate basic international laws," he said.

Then he pointed to the fate of thousands of Palestinians, including women and children and asked, "How long have they been in 'Zionists' prisons?"

Elsewhere in his speech, he regretted the failure of the occupying forces and their supporters to learn a lesson from their historical blunders, adding that now after 50 years, they still hope to make the Palestinians yield to them by suppressing them.

"This is while only promotion of justice can put an end to the sufferings in the region and establish peace once more," he added.

Araqchi expressed concern over the possible extension of crisis to the whole region, given the violation of Syria's air space and said, "We strongly condemn the 'Zionists' recent criminal act and consider it as a mass punishment and violation of international rights.

"We believe that the international community should mediate effectively and prevent such terrorist actions against the Palestinian people."

The deputy minister stressed the significance of UNSC role in ending the 'Zionist' regime's disregard for the will of the
international community.

He urged that they should be underlined properly in resolutions of the UN, Non-Aligned Movement and the Organization of the Islamic Conference.

Turning to the threats facing the international peace and security on account of such violations against Palestinians, he stressed the great responsibility of the UNSC in this respect within the framework of the UN Charter.

The foreign ministry official hoped that all members of the UN Security Council will fulfill their tasks and tackle the situation properly, given the latest violation of the occupied territories.

Iran slams US for violating Palestinians' rights
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« Reply #85 on: July 02, 2006, 02:29:26 AM »

 Protests Continue Over Israeli Offensive

WORLD CAPITALS — Massive demonstrations are planned in a number of European and Arab countries to protest the ongoing Israeli offensive against the Palestinians in Gaza.

Rallies are scheduled in a number of French cities on Saturday, July 1, to protest the incessant Israeli onslaughts, which entered its fourth day in a row.

Two marches are also planned for Sunday, July 2, in central Paris and before the Israeli embassy to protest the Israeli aggressions.

A series of rallies are also planned in Morocco to protest the ongoing Israeli offensive.

Two rallies are scheduled in front of the Moroccan parliament and the Palestinian embassy on Sunday and Tuesday respectively.

A major demonstration is also planned in the capital Rabat on Saturday, July 8.

"The rallies are a message to the international community and Arab governments that the Moroccan people reject world silence on the Israeli crimes," said organizers.

The Tawhid and Islah movement also called for "supporting the Palestinian resistance against the Israeli occupation and rejecting normalization with the Zionist entity".

A special session of the Moroccan parliament was also called to express solidarity with the Palestinian people.

Earlier on Friday, hundreds of Austrians rallied in the capital Vienna to denounce the Israeli attacks.

"We want to show that the Europeans are for the right of the Palestinian people to live in peace and dignity," said Mohamed Abdul-Ghani, one of the participants in the rally.

A petition was also submitted by the protestors to the representative of the Vienna-based European Commission calling for a "fair European stance on the Palestinian people and stop the EU indifference to the daily Israeli crimes".

Muslims around the world took to the streets on Friday, June 30, following the weekly Muslim prayers to protest the ongoing onslaughts, chanting anti-Israel slogans and urging their governments to kick out the Israeli ambassadors.

Israel pounded Gaza with 30 air raids overnight as part of a wide-scale assault, the biggest offensive since pulling out of the territory in September.

Israel claims that it operation is aimed at setting free an Israeli soldier taken prisoner by resistance fighters, but the Palestinians say that Tel Aviv is set to topple the Hamas-led government.

Mistaken

The ongoing Israeli offensive against Gaza and abduction of Palestinian ministers and lawmakers have also drawn rebuke from many world countries.

"I find it hard to understand the abduction of (Palestinian politicians) and cannot see it as a contribution to Middle East peace," Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan was quoted as saying by Agence France-Presse (AFP) on Saturday.

"It is a very, very mistaken attitude," he added.

On Thursday, the Israeli occupation army rounded up 64 Palestinian officials, including eight ministers, 24 lawmakers, in a massive swoops across the occupied West Bank.

"It is not right to kidnap a soldier, but should the price of that be the abduction, capture of parliamentarians and local administrators?" Erdogan said.

Early on Saturday, Finland, the new EU president, also called on Israel to release the abducted Palestinian officials.

"I call on the Palestinians to immediately release the Israeli soldier they took hostage. At the same time, Israel must halt its military operations, free the Palestinian ministers and members of parliament and stop destroying civilian infrastructure in the Palestinian territories," Finnish Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen said in an interview with Germany's Die Welt newspaper.

Malaysia, the current chair of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), the world's biggest Muslim grouping, also condemned the Israeli offensive in Gaza.

"What Israel has done could disrupt the peace process and threaten the safety of the Palestinians," Foreign Minister Syed Hamid told Malaysia's news agency Bernama late Friday during a visit to Amman, Jordan.

He said the attacks were violation of international law.

OIC Resolution

Meanwhile, Arab and Muslim countries have won support for a resolution to put the issue of the occupied Palestinian lands on the permanent agenda of the UN Human Rights Council.

The OIC resolution was adopted by 29 countries of the 47-member council with 12 against, five abstentions and one delegation absent, Reuters reported.

Regional powers, including Iran, Jordan, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and Syria were among the resolution's sponsors.

Western countries, including Britain, Canada, France and Germany, as well as Japan, voted against the text.

The United States did not stand for election and only had observer status in the newly formed council.

The Arab and Muslim countries also secured support to hold a special session of the council next week to discuss the situation in the occupied Palestinian territories.

Protests Continue Over Israeli Offensive
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« Reply #86 on: July 02, 2006, 02:32:04 AM »

Abbas confident Shalit can be freed
Khaled Abu Toameh and AP, THE JERUSALEM POST    Jul. 1, 2006

Palestinian Chairman Mahmoud Abbas said late Saturday he was confident an agreement could be reached to end the crisis with Israel and free IDF Cpl. Gilad Shalit, who was abducted by Palestinian operatives last Sunday.

For a Jerusalem Online video of events click here

"Regarding the soldier, we will surely reach an agreement. It is not a dead end. People want an acceptable solution," Abbas told reporters.

"Israel as a matter of principal does not accept reciprocity. Maybe there will be another formula that won't be turned back," Abbas continued.

"I am afraid that what is to come is going to be dangerous because we can't bear another serious aggression and another occupation. What is to come may be more difficult," he said. "What is important is to protect national unity. To protect our people and to avoid bringing danger and disaster to the nation."

Palestinian Authority officials in Ramallah said that divisions inside Hamas were preventing progress in talks aimed at releasing Shalit.

"Hamas doesn't know what it wants," a PA official told The Jerusalem Post. "The movement's leaders are saying different things and we don't know who's in charge there. The rivalry within Hamas makes it difficult to reach an agreement."

The official was speaking shortly after Abbas's office issued a statement saying it was not clear who in Hamas was making decisions about the soldier.

According to the statement, mediation efforts by Egypt and other countries have yet to bear fruit because it was unclear who was authorized to take decisions - the military wing of Hamas, which is believed to be holding Shalit, or Hamas's political leaders abroad.

PA Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh, who has been negotiating with Abbas for the past week, apparently has no say in the matter, the statement added.

"The next hours are critical, sensitive and serious. And though the efforts are still continuing, we have not reached a satisfactory solution until now," a spokesman for Abbas said.

"After a week of continuous and lengthy contacts with all parties - Palestinian, Arab, international and particularly Egyptian - the president [Abbas] is still exerting efforts to stop the Israeli incursions, assassinations and detentions, and avoid more disasters for the Palestinian people," he said.

Egyptian intelligence chief Omar Suleiman, who was supposed to visit the Gaza Strip over the weekend to negotiate with Hamas, postponed his trip, apparently after learning that the kidnappers had not softened their position.

Mashaal was scheduled to visit Cairo over the weekend for talks with Suleiman on ways of ending the crisis. It was not clear on Saturday whether Mashaal had arrived in Egypt.

The kidnappers are demanding the release of at least 1,000 Palestinians from Israeli jails in return for information about the condition of Shalit. On Friday, Egyptian security officials based in the Gaza Strip sounded much more optimistic about the prospects of reaching a deal.

Abdullah Abdullah, chairman of the Palestinian Legislative Council's Political Committee, said on Friday that the two sides were close to reaching an agreement on a prisoner swap. He said that the under the terms of the agreement, which was being brokered by Egypt, Shalit would be exchanged for several hundred Palestinian prisoners, including all the female inmates.

He said the deal would also call for Israel and the PA to return to the negotiating table and for Israel to halt all its military activities in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

Hamas spokesman Mushir al-Masri said on Saturday that his movement wanted a prisoner swap similar to the one that was reached in January 2004, when Israel released senior Hizbullah members and 400 Palestinian prisoners in exchange for kidnapped Elhanan Tannenbaum and the bodies of three Israeli soldiers.

"There will be no solution for this case without the release of Palestinian prisoners," he said. "We want a prisoner exchange like Hizbullah, which swapped the bodies of three Israeli soldiers for hundreds of Arab prisoners held in Israel."

Also on Saturday, PA Deputy Minister of Prisoners Affairs Ziad Abu Ein announced that Shalit has received treatment for wounds sustained during his abduction and that he is in stable condition.

Speaking at a news conference in Ramallah, Abu Ein cited unidentified "mediators" as telling him that Shalit had been wounded during his abduction.

"He has three wounds," he said. "I guess shrapnel wounds."

Abu Ein, who is a senior Fatah leader, later claimed that he was only quoting media reports and that he did not have independent information regarding Shalit's condition or whereabouts.

In his first public appearance since Shalit's abduction a week ago, Haniyeh said on Friday that his government would not cave in to Israeli demands. He added that he was working hard to resolve the crisis peacefully.

Referring to the IDF's detention of Hamas ministers, legislators and mayors, Haniyeh told worshipers at a mosque: "When they kidnapped the ministers, they meant to hijack the government's position, but we say no positions will be hijacked, no governments will fall.

"This comprehensive aggression shows there is a premeditated plan against the people and the legitimate government and the elected PLC. How can we explain the arrest of the ministers and the PLC members? The threats don't scare us. This is an old/new policy, because we believe that lives are controlled by God," he said.

Also on Saturday, Hamas condemned US President George W. Bush as the "leader of evil and the number one sponsor of terrorism in the world."

The attack on Bush came in response to statements made by US Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton, who described Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal as a "known international terrorist."

Abbas confident Shalit can be freed
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« Reply #87 on: July 02, 2006, 02:37:09 AM »

1,000 protest IDF activity at Jakarta US embassy
Associated Press, THE JERUSALEM POST    Jul. 2, 2006

Around 1,000 Indonesian men, women and children rallied Sunday at the US Embassy against Israel's military operations, as Middle East violence escalated over the capture of IDF Cpl. Gilad Shalit.

The protest was organized by the Islamist Justice and Prosperity Party whose members shouted anti-American slogans and denounced Israel and accused its troops of human rights violations.

Around 500 police officers with water canons protected the American complex, often the staging point for anti-Western demonstrations.

1,000 protest IDF activity at Jakarta US embassy
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As if we have anything to do with the attacks in Gaza.
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« Reply #88 on: July 02, 2006, 02:41:39 AM »

Israel will Continue Strikes Against Hamas Until Release of Kidnapped Soldier

 2 July 2006 | 08:48 | FOCUS News Agency

Tel Aviv. Israel will continue the strikes against Hamas until the Israeli soldier is not released and the launching of rockets from Palestine territory doesn’t cease, AFP announced citing a statement by the Israeli Minister of Foreign Affairs Roni Bar-On on the national radio. Minister’s statement was made several hours after the air strike against Prime Minister’s office of the Palestine Autonomy Ismail Hanya in the town of Gaza.

Israel will Continue Strikes Against Hamas Until Release of Kidnapped Soldier
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The wording in the article is wrong because it's translated to English, and it's not their primary language...
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« Reply #89 on: July 02, 2006, 02:43:57 AM »

COLORADO SPRINGS AIR FORCE INSTALLATION ON HEIGHTENED ALERT

Four Installations Across The Country Are Affected By Order From U.S. Space Command
by Baaron Pittenger

6/29/2006
 
An Air Force installation in Colorado Springs and one near Denver are operating with heightened security.

The Cheyenne Mountain Air Station, which houses NORAD, is now at "Bravo-Plus".

There are five levels of alert: normal, Alpha (low), Bravo (medium), Charlie (high) and Delta (critical). “Bravo-Plus” is slightly higher than a medium threat level.

The Cheyenne Mountain Air Station And Buckley Air Force Base are among four installations in the country at the higher alert level ordered last week by then- Acting-Commander of Air Force Space Command, General Fred Klotz.

Space Command would not comment on the reason for the security increase.

The order also affects Vandenberg Air Force Base in California and Patrick air force base in Florida.

COLORADO SPRINGS AIR FORCE INSTALLATION ON HEIGHTENED ALERT
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About time I think, come Lord Jesus soon.
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