INDEPENDENT NEWS

Invasion in Rafah, 8 dead, dozens injured

Published: Mon 13 Oct 2003 12:38 AM
Invasion in Rafah, 8 dead, dozens injured
[Rafah, Gaza Strip]
Israeli tanks, helicopters, and bulldozers have invaded the Palestinian city of Rafah, in the Gaza Strip, with eight dead and at least 50 wounded. At the time of time of writing, American-made Apache helicopters are firing indiscrimately throughout the city, and many residents have been forced to flee their homes under heavy gunfire.
Rafah has been completely isolated from the rest of the Gaza Strip for more than four days, causing grave food and medical shortages. During this period eight civilians have been killed by Israeli gunfire and rockets, including two children, one of whom was shot in the back. Among the wounded many are in critical condtion, including one ambulance driver shot in the chest while evacuating the wounded.
Three refugee camps in and around Rafah have been occupied by Israeli tanks and soldiers. Thoughout the area, the Israeli army has declared an indefinate "curfew", a term used to describe a form of martial law in which anyone leaving their homes may be shot on sight.
The Israeli army claims the reason for the invasion is to find "smuggling tunnels", supposeded used to smuggle weapons into Gaza. After four days of searching, no tunnels have been found.

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