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A Palestinian boy cries in the rubble of his family house after it was demolished by Israeli bulldozers during a raid in al Brazil, at the Rafah refugee camp in southern Gaza Strip May 21, 2004. Israel began a partial troop pullout from a Gaza refugee camp on Friday, three days after defying an international outcry by sending in its tanks and demolishing homes, Palestinian sources said
Israeli troops kill 4-year-old Palestinian
RAFAH, Gaza Strip (Reuters) - A four-year-old Palestinian girl has been shot dead in a Gaza refugee camp where Israeli troops are mounting raids against militants and a suicide bomber exploded at a West Bank checkpoint.
Palestinian medics and witnesses said Israeli soldiers shot the girl in Rafah refugee camp on Saturday, but Israeli military sources said they did not know of any shooting in the neighbourhood where she was killed.
In the West Bank, a suicide bomber detonated his explosive belt at an army checkpoint near a Jewish settlement, wounding a soldier and three Palestinians, the army said.
The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine claimed responsibility for the bombing, and said in a statement it was in retaliation for the Rafah raid, which has left 42 Palestinians dead and hundreds homeless.
Khader Abu Zeid, uncle of the dead girl, said his niece had been cooped up indoors since the start of the raid and had gone out to buy something from a nearby shop. Witnesses said soldiers had opened fire from a nearby position.
"She took half a shekel from her father and left the house," Abu Zeid said. "We heard heavy shooting and when we went out we found her on the ground, two bullets in her neck and head."
Israel, which launched the raid on Tuesday after 13 soldiers were killed in the Gaza Strip, pulled tanks and troops out of the camp on Friday, under international pressure.
But the army redeployed some forces on the edges of the camp. It said the operation to detain militants and uncover weapon-smuggling tunnels from Egypt was continuing and one tunnel had been discovered on Saturday.
Peter Hansen, chief of the U.N. agency for refugees UNRWA, was touring Rafah to assess damage from the raid and said he heard gun shots while he was in the neighbourhood where the girl was killed.
"We have confirmation from the hospital that a girl was shot and killed in one of the two gunbursts we heard," Hansen said.
"SHARON WAS HERE"
Violence in Gaza has risen since Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon proposed evacuating troops and Jewish settlements in a plan backed by most Israelis and Washington, but rejected by his right-wing Likud party in a referendum this month.
Rafah residents say some 35 homes have been destroyed and dozens damaged in the raid. The army disputes this, saying it demolished only five homes and more were damaged by gunbattles.
The roof of one flattened house bore graffiti in Arabic: "Sharon was here." Witnesses said it had been written by Palestinians in the camp.
More than 1,600 Palestinians have been rendered homeless since the start of the incursion, Hansen said.
Roads in the camp are pocked by huge craters after being ploughed up by army bulldozers and many houses have bullet holes.
"We don't even know what this is, a tank shell or a missile from the sky," resident Hikmat al-Arta said, pointing to a gaping hole in a wall in her house. She then pulled out of a closet a child's jacket, ridden with bullet holes.
"Everything was broken up on top of us. Everything was ruined. We don't have another house to go to," al-Arta said.
Palestinian President Yasser Arafat said Israel was carrying out "war crimes" in Gaza. "This Israeli government does not want peace but insists on deepening the occupation," he told the Arab summit in Tunis via satellite.
Arafat said Palestinian security forces were ready to enforce order in any area Israeli troops withdraw from.
Israel is doing the exact same things (attacking it's neighbors, terrorizing and assasinating their "enemy") that lead us to the first Gulf War. But because people can't seperate Jews and Israel and even thinking something bad about Jews makes you an automatic racist nazi asshole scumbag... they'll keep on being a a threat to peace. Plus they have no real oil supply we can take over.
Well.. i despise religion, OT included. I despise Isreal as a nation, especially Sharon. And i despise america kissing their ass for military strategic positioning. The Israeli gov't IMO, is no different than Palestenian terrorist groups. Just more powerful and stronger in numbers.
But in reply to the article. Why does this suprise anyone? War isn't pretty, people die. Innocents, children, women, and men. It's sad, it truly is, and i think people need to realize what it's really like. And i may be a pacifist, and anti-war, but i'm also a realist, and having a pity party isn't really the answer.
thousands of children die everyday, from war, disease, you name it.
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