ISRAELI SOLDIERS KILLED IN TERROR ATTACK
are brought into Soroka hospital in Beersheva Photo:
9......Updated 20:00.......Two Arab terrorists armed with
grenades and assault rifles penetrated an IDF defensive position
early this morning near the Gaza Strip, killing four soldiers before
being shot dead in a gun battle, said the IDF Spokesperson's Office.
terrorist group Hamas said it was responsible for the pre-dawn raid
in southern Israel Wednesday in which gunmen shot dead four Israeli
soldiers before being killed themselves. The Israeli military said
both assailants wore Palestinian police uniforms. The IDF reported
that 8 terrorists had cut through fences on the Gaza - Israel border,
allowing the two PA uniformed attackers quick access into the Israeli
"This is a turning point, as it was the first successful infiltration
of Israel from the Gaza Strip," said Israeli army general Doron
Israeli defensive position which was attacked earlier today
efforts of their terrorist activity Hamas claimed responsiblity
and stated: "There has been a bold attack on a position near
Gaza airport, in which four enemy soldiers were killed." Hamas
politburo head Khaled Meshal told a political conference in Beirut
that: "Two were martyred (in the raid). The brethren have just
informed me that the Qassam brigades (the military wing of Hamas)
have claimed responsibility," he said.
The terror attack
broke almost a week's silence except for the capture of a Palestinian
terror ship which was carrying 50 tons of weapons for Arab terrorists.
IDF officer and three soldiers were killed this morning
while defending themselves from Palestinian terrorists.
Ashraf Hoiash Mazarib, 28, from Beit Zarzir
Sgt.-Maj. Ibrahim Hamadieh, 23, from Reihaneih
St.-Sgt. Mofeid Sawayed, 25, from Abu Snan
Eli Abu-Ghanem, 25, from Haifa
were Beduins from an IDF desert patrol unit stationed in the
soldiers were wounded, one seriously, in the attack.
opposes the negotiated peace process Arafat began with Israel in
1993, said after Arafat's December 16 call for reduced violence
that it was suspending attacks inside Israel. Hizbollah's Al-Manar
TV, which was broadcasting the conference, later quoted Meshal as
identifying the Palestinian gunmen as Imad Rizq and Mohammed Jamoos.
lull in violence that followed Arafat's call boosted hopes of reviving
a U.S.-backed truce-to-talks plan which aims to end some 15 months
of conflict in which at least 238 Israelis have been murdered.
no direct explanation for the apparent resumption of armed attacks
on Israelis, but said Palestinians had received no political gains
in exchange for the cease-fire, and had nothing to gain by renouncing
50 tons of
Iranian / Palestinian terror weapons captured by the IDF
the humilating PA terror boat's capture by the IDF, Hamas now had
nothing to lose in attacking Israeli targets. "My brothers
in the Palestinian Authority, what have you won with this cooling-off,
and repeated declarations of cease-fires? What do you have to show
for meeting the demands of the Zionist entity and America?"
he asked. Hamas has made it very clear that they have learned nothing
from September 11th and America's war against terror will continue
attacks against both Israel and the United States.
Ministry official Arye Mekel said Wednesday's attack was proof that
the Palestinian Authority ``has done nothing, or very little, to
At a solidarity
dinner last night in Jerusalem, celebrating Jewish youth visiting
Israel in a program called "Birthright Israel", Israeli
Prime Minister Sharon said the captured arms shipment showed Iran
and the Palestinians were closely collaborating to strike at Israel.
The captain of the ship has said that the weapons were loaded in
Iran and intended for the Palestinians.
Secretary Donald Rumsfeld expressed support for Israel's action.
``They clearly had very good intelligence that those weapons were
going to be used against them and they intercepted the ship by pre-empting
that ship from landing and unloading and then providing those weapons
to be used against Israel,'' Rumsfeld said on C-SPAN television.
Sharon has made
it very clear that the political party of Yasser Arafat - Fatah
- has continued to support terrorist activites against Israel.
Israeli Government spokesman Avi Pazner said that Israel would "not
remain indifferent to the attacks".