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From the Open-Publishing Newswire
Thu May 20 2004Israel Defense Forces Committing Massacre in Rafah
Thu May 20 2004War Crimes In Gaza
Read Rafah Today, a frequently updated photo journal by Mohammed, a student in Rafah. Audio interview with Mohammed. | ECR reports on local reaction to killings - audio
May 20th While hundreds marched in Tel Aviv, the UN Security council passed a resolution condemning the "killing of Palestinian civilians". In an act of arrogance Israel continued it's operation into the Rafah refugee camp, killing 9 more and rounding up Palestinian men. The events of the past day have also caused a stir within the Israeli Knesset.
May 19th A peaceful demonstration against the incursion into Rafah was attacked by Israeli soldiers leaving at least 23 dead, most of whom are children, when a tank shell exploded in the midst of the crowd. Pictures. Read Israeli news paper Haaretz's op-ed piece on the attacks.
May 17th, "a massive deployment" of IDF troops launched a major operation in the southern Gaza Strip, aimed at isolating the town of Rafah from the rest of Gaza and neighboring Egypt". Amnesty international has issued an appeal against the house demolitions.
May 14th, "the Israel Defense Forces launched a mass demolition of buildings" in the Rafah refugee camp leaving over 1,000 homeless. According to a UN report from before these demolitions, "Since Oct.1, 2000, 2,018 houses were destroyed or damaged beyond repair in the Gaza Strip, making 18,382 people homeless. Of those, more than half were in the Rafah camp, where 1,309 houses were razed or irreparably damaged, and 12,600 people made homeless." Amnesty International has released a new report condemning the collective punishment of Palestinians as a war crime and the European Union has called for an immediate stop to the Rafah demolitions. Despite the increased worldwide condemnation of what many see as ethnic cleansing, Israel announced on May 16th that it plans to "step up demolitions".
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