Watermelon attempts suicide bombing in J'lem
Friday, July 27, 2001
Bomb hidden inside watermelon discovered on Jerusalem bus
IDF tanks shell Palestinian posts day after murder of Israeli teenager.
By Amos Harel, Baruch Kra and Agencies
A terror attack was foiled Friday afternoon in Jerusalem when an Egged bus
driver discovered an explosive device packed inside a watermelon. The driver
noticed the bomb during a routine check as the bus was parked outside the
Malkha shopping center in Jerusalem. Sappers sent to the site successfully
deactivated the bomb.
Channel One reported that Jerusalem district police commander,
Superintendent Miki Levy, said that police were on alert for a bomb attempt
in the capital.
"There were specific warnings about the possibility of placing an explosive
device in Jerusalem," he said. "Therefore today we were deployed (in
Jerusalem), espcially in areas with large concentrations of people."
In a separate incident Friday afternoon, Palestinians fired on IDF troops at
the Karni-Netzarim road in the Gaza Strip. There were no injuries and the
soldiers returned fire. Palestinians also fired at an IDF patrol alongside
the Alon Moreh settlement near Nablus in the West Bank. There were no
injuries or damage. The soldiers returned fire.
The IDF also imposed a curfew on two Palestinian villages near Nablus after
clashes erupted between soldiers and Palestinians on a road leading to a
Jewish settlement. The curfew prevented the villagers from leaving their
and closed access roads to all traffic moving in or out.
Early Friday, IDF tanks shelled Palestinian police posts in the West Bank,
the morning after Palestinians shot and killed an Israeli teenager near his
home in the settlement of Givat Ze'ev. Ronen Landau, 17, was hit several
times by a sniper's bullets as he was traveling with his father on the road
between Jerusalem and Modi'in on Thursday night.
Landau was laid to rest Friday at 3 P.M. in Jerusalem.
IDF tanks responded early Friday by shelling two Palestinian police posts in
Surda, north of Ramallah, the Palestinian political and commercial center in
the West Bank.
Tanks then targeted three positions belonging to Force 17 - Palestinian
Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat's elite guard - in Beitunia, east of
Ramallah, the IDF said. No serious injuries were reported.
Witnesses in Ramallah said the boom of tanks shells echoed
through the city until the early hours of the morning.
Helicopters hovered overhead throughout the assault.
The shooting on the road is the latest in a series of attacks on Israeli
vehicles in the area. Two Israelis were killed and several wounded earlier
this year in a spate of attacks on the Jerusalem-Modi'in road. IDF officials
attributed this to members of Arafat's Fatah party and Force 17.
Eyewitness Dekel Cohen told Israel Television that he heard gunshots
Thrusday night and saw a car with Israeli licence plates swerve onto the
sidewalk. "People took someone out and started to treat him. Then an
ambulance came," he said. Cohen said he heard more gunshots a few seconds
Minister without Portfolio Dan Naveh said he was driving on the same highway
shortly before the shooting. "Here we have another murderous attack," he
told Israel Television. "This shows [Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser]
Arafat's true face as a terrorist."
David Baker, a spokesman in the Prime Minister's Office, said the attack
showed that the Palestinians have decided to continue with this trail of
terror directed at Israel.
After the shooting attack late Thursday, The Council of the Settlements in
Judea, Samaria and Gaza Strip (Yesha council) called for an end to the
imaginary and bleeding cease-fire, a reference to a truce negotiated last
month by CIA director George Tenet. The truce never fully took
Earlier Thursday, three bombs exploded near Israeli vehicles in the northern
part of the West Bank. No one was hurt. One bomb went off next to a bus
carrying Israeli girls home from school, settlers said. The bus had armor
plating, preventing injuries.
Two other bombs were set off near IDF vehicles, the military said. The
vehicles were damaged
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