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Wednesday,October 21,2020 13:59 PM

Palestine bomb kills 15 israelis

By Vision Reporter

Added 31st March 2002 03:00 AM

JERUSALEM, Sunday – A bomb ripped through a crowded restaurant in the northern Israeli port city of Haifa on Sunday, police said, killing at least 15 people and wounding 30 others, several of them critically, in another Palestinian militant attack.

JERUSALEM, Sunday – A bomb ripped through a crowded restaurant in the northern Israeli port city of Haifa on Sunday, police said, killing at least 15 people and wounding 30 others, several of them critically, in another Palestinian militant attack.

JERUSALEM, Sunday – A bomb ripped through a crowded restaurant in the northern Israeli port city of Haifa on Sunday, police said, killing at least 15 people and wounding 30 others, several of them critically, in another Palestinian militant attack. The latest bloodshed came just hours after Palestinian officials called for urgent international help, saying Yasser Arafat’s life was in grave danger from an ongoing Israeli assault launched on his West Bank compound on Friday. A group of Western pacifists succeeded in entering Arafat’s besieged offices in the West Bank town of Ramallah on Sunday, defying Israeli tanks and warning shots, witnesses said. The group, which included French farm union activist Jose Bove, marched to the Palestinian leader’s headquarters which is surrounded by Israeli tanks. The group pledged to stay inside Arafat’s besieged offices in the West Bank town of Ramallah, to protect him from Israeli troops, one of the activists told AFP from inside the building. Despite the warnings from the soldiers, they entered the compound and the area of the office where Arafat has been trapped for three days. The Israeli army hinted that Arafat, for long a bitter foe of Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, could be killed in the military siege and said it had been ordered to “neutralise” the Palestinian leader. Initial details of the Haifa blast were sketchy but television reports said at least 15 people were killed and that five of the wounded were left in critical condition in the blast which gutted a packed single-storey restaurant and caved in its roof. The armed wing of the Palestinian militant group Hamas, the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, claimed responsibility for the bombing in a phone call to Hezbollah television in Lebanon. Television footage showed the twisted wreckage left behind from the explosion in Haifa, a city that has often been targeted by Palestinian militants. Attacks on Israeli targets, including a suicide bombing that killed 22 people during the high Jewish holiday of Passover last week, caused Israel to launch the assault on Arafat’s Ramallah compound. Top Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat, speaking to CNN before the blast, said Arafat’s life was at stake as Israeli forces punched their way into the inner offices of his headquarters. “The situation is really grave and I’m afraid for Yasser Arafat’s life,” Erakat said, warning that the siege would “only bring more Israelis dying.” He said he was talking with the United States, Russia and other nations to try to end the raid, which has sent Israeli armoured vehicles and tanks pouring into his compound. West Bank intelligence chief Tawfiq Tirwai, who is in the offices with Arafat, told his security staff by walkie-talkie that two security guards had been wounded, one seriously who was stranded without medical attention. Israeli army spokesman General Ron Kitrey said the aim of the siege was now to “neutralise” the Palestinian leader. Asked on public radio what he meant, Kitrey said he was “not here to play semantic games.” AFP ends

Palestine bomb kills 15 israelis

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