5.1.03 Two Palestinian suicide bombers blew themselves up near the old bus station in Tel Aviv, killing 23 people and wounding more than 100. In response, the Israeli army barred all Palestinians under 35 from leaving the West Bank and Gaza and prevented a top-level Palestinian delegation from traveling to London, at the invitation of British Prime Minister Tony Blair, for talks on internal reforms.
6.1.03 Three Jewish families accompanied by a right-wing Knesset member broke into a building in the Muslim quarter of Jerusalem's Old City, escorted by soldiers and police. According to Israeli statistics, 58 Jewish families now live inside the Muslim quarter.
8.1.03 According to Haaretz, an Israeli delegation submitted a formal request to the US for a "special" package of US$4 billion in military aid and US$8 billion in loan guarantees. American representatives at the meeting gave a positive response to Israel's request, reported Israeli ambassador to the US Danny Ayalon.
9.1.03 Israel's High Court ruled that Ahmad Tibi of the Arab Jewish Hadash party and Azmi Bishara of the Balad party can run for January 28 elections. The ruling overturned the Central Elections Commission's decision to bar these leading Arab legislators over their alleged support for attacks on Israelis.
17.1.03 The Palestinian National Authority (PNA) denounced the Israeli decision to close military liaison offices, saying it is against signed agreements. Israel closed military liaison offices in Tulkarem, Qalqilya and Nablus, one of the last remnants of the Oslo agreements that set up cooperation between Israeli and Palestinian security forces. Israeli soldiers forced out Palestinian police officers in the buildings and took their weapons.
18.1.03 Settlers killed two Palestinians after they infiltrated the Hebron-area settlement of Harsina. One armed Israeli was killed in the shooting attack, and three other settlers were injured.
21.1.03 Israeli forces destroyed 62 shops in the village of Nazlat Issa, north of Tulkarem next to the Green Line with Israel, claiming the shops were illegally built.
24.1.03 Twelve Palestinian groups, including Fateh, Hamas and Islamic Jihad, started a broad-based meeting hosted by Egypt. The high-level meeting, the first in 20 years, was convened to thrash out the future of the Intifada, and to study an Egyptian proposal for a one-year halt in attacks on Israeli civilians to restore calm and boost the chances of reviving peace talks.
24.1.03 In Davos, Switzerland, US Secretary of State Colin Powell repeated a call for new Palestinian leaders, adding; "We also have to say to our Israeli friends that you have to do more to deal with the humanitarian conditions of the Palestinian people and you have to understand that a Palestinian state must be a real state, not a phony state that's diced into 1,000 different pieces," in reference to Israeli PM Ariel Sharon's offer of a truncated, limited state some time in the future.
25.1.03 The Israeli army killed 14 Palestinians during an incursion into Gaza City that used 35 tanks backed by helicopters. Four of the dead were hit by an airborne missile fired at the entrance to a market. Seventeen small workshops and eight homes were demolished in the attack.
26.1.03 Twelve more Palestinians were killed by Israeli soldiers during the deepest incursion yet into Gaza. More than 50 metal workshops were wrecked, as well as 80 small stores, three houses, a restaurant and a supermarket.
27.1.03 The Israeli army announced that work had officially begun on yet another "separation" fence between the West Bank and Israel. The wall will stretch 45 kilometers between Kfar Salem (where it will meet with another separation wall south along the Green Line) and Bisan, near Jenin.
28.1.03 Israeli PM Ariel Sharon is re-elected prime minister of Israel. Palestinian President Yasser Arafat expressed his readiness to meet with Sharon and resume peace negotiations. The offer was immediately rejected by Israeli cabinet spokesperson Avi Pazner and the Israeli PM's office issued a statement accusing President Arafat of masterminding terrorism.
29.1.03 According to a report prepared by Israel's Peace Now movement, the Israeli government allocated US$46 million to settlements in the West Bank and Gaza Strip in 2001. The figure did not include funds allocated to settlement security, education and other institutions in the settlements that receive government subsides.
29.1.03 The Israeli Central Court in Jerusalem issued an order to seize nearly NIS 44 million from the PNA funds frozen by Israel. The money was to go to the Ayalon insurance company, which claimed it paid NIS 378 million to its clients between 1996 and 2000 in compensation for their cars, which were allegedly stolen with the knowledge and cooperation of the PNA. The Central Court also ordered the PNA to pay NIS 50 million to the Egged bus company for financial losses incurred during the Intifada.
2.2.03 Israeli Finance Minister Silvan Shalom ordered that NIS 60 million from the PNA's frozen funds be paid to Israel's electric company for power provided to the Gaza Strip.
2.2.03 Belgium's Supreme Court ruled that a war-crimes case brought against Israeli officials for their involvement in the 1982 massacre of Palestinians in Beirut's Sabra and Shatila refugee camps may now proceed. The case was originally filed in 2001 by 23 survivors, but has repeatedly come up against political and legal obstacles. Belgium has a legal statute that allows it to try suspected war criminals from any country.
3.2.03 Israeli human rights organization B'Tselem denounced the Israeli army's use of flechette shells against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. Israeli tanks stationed close to the Jabalya refugee camp fired three flechette shells at a soccer field in the camp, injuring nine Palestinians.
5.2.03 Five Palestinians, including an elderly woman, were killed in Israeli raids in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank.
15.2.03 Four Israeli soldiers were killed when a bomb hits their tank in Gaza.
16.2.03 Six members of Hamas' Izzidin Qassam Brigades were assassinated when a glider they were unloading from a car was detonated by an Israeli plane flying overhead.
16.2.03 Israeli troops arrested Taysir Khaled, a member of the Palestine Liberation Organization's (PLO) executive committee and the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine, in Nablus. Three Palestinians were killed and 23 others injured during the arrest.
17.2.03 Hamas field commander Riyad Abu Zeid, 32, was assassinated on his way to a funeral. Israeli troops stopped his car near the Netsarim settlement then opened fire on the vehicle.
20.2.03 Eleven Palestinians died after Israeli troops, backed by tanks and helicopters, entered residential areas of Gaza City.
22.2.03 In the most serious protest since the beginning of the Intifada, EU ambassadors wrote a letter to the Israeli Foreign Ministry protesting Israel's continuing attacks against the Palestinians. Israeli sources said the letter outlined Israeli abuses of human rights, including destroying Palestinian activists' family homes and the closure of Palestinian educational and social institutions.
23.2.03 Israeli troops ended Operation Root Canal in the West Bank city of Nablus after killing seven Palestinians. The operation began on February 18 in the densely populated Old City area, with Israeli troops imposing a tight curfew and conducting house-to-house searches.
24.2.03 Israeli troops withdrew from Beit Hanoun in the Gaza Strip after killing six Palestinians and demolishing five homes and two over-passes during a 30-hour incursion.
26.2.03 According to Haaretz, five Israeli army reservists who served in the April invasion of the Jenin refugee camp have filed a NIS 2.5 million libel suit against director of the "Jenin, Jenin" documentary, Muhammad Bakri. The reservists claimed the film incorrectly portrayed them as war criminals. The documentary was banned by Israel's censorship board. The reservists' lawsuit was also being brought against the Tel Aviv and Jerusalem Cinemateques, which screened the film.
2.3.03 Israeli troops invaded the Khan Younis refugee camp and razed a seven-story building that housed more than 70 people.
3.3.03 Israeli troops invaded Gaza's al-Bureij refugee camp, leaving eight dead and 40 injured. The camp's water and electricity infrastructures were also badly damaged.
3.3.03 Palestinian Interior Minister Hani al-Hasan cancelled a meeting with the director of Israeli PM Ariel Sharon's office due to the continuing Israeli attacks on Palestinians. The security meeting was supposed to discuss the prospects of a cease-fire, gradual Israeli withdrawal from Palestinian cities and the redeployment of Palestinian police in the regions reoccupied by the Israeli army.
4.3.03 According to Haaretz, the Israeli National Planning and Building Commission has approved tens of thousands of new settlement housing units for construction along the mountain ridges of Jerusalem.
5.3.03 Seventeen Israelis were killed and 40 others injured when a suicide bomber from Hebron detonated a powerful explosives belt on a bus in Haifa.
6.3.03 In an incursion into Jabalya refugee camp, the Israeli army left 11 Palestinians dead and 140 wounded.
6.3.03 Eleven Palestinians, including three children, were killed by Israeli troops in Jabalya, Gaza, during an incursion.
7.3.03 Two Israeli settlers from Kiryat Arba were killed and eight wounded by two Palestinian gunmen who raided the settlement disguised in Jewish Orthodox clothing. The gunmen were killed by Israeli soldiers.
9.3.03 The PNA swore in its new prime minister, Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen).
10.3.03 Bulldozers sent by the Israeli Interior Ministry destroyed three Palestinian houses in Beit Hanina, Jerusalem, despite a court order delaying the demolition.
10.3.03 A Hamas activist opened fire on an Israeli military post killing one soldier and wounding four others.
12.3.03 Israeli Finance Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered the director of Israeli customs and VAT taxes Eitan Rub to deduct US$7.5 million from PNA funds to build sewage systems and purify hard water in Israeli settlements. Netanyahu announced that he plans to deduct further funds from the PNA, because he considers them the property of Israel.
16.3.03 US peace activist Rachel Corrie, 23, was crushed to death by an Israeli bulldozer as she attempted to prevent a home demolition in Rafah. Corrie, a volunteer with the International Solidarity Movement, was wearing a bright orange jacket and shouting into a bullhorn when the bulldozer advanced.
17.3.03 Israeli troops arrested Hussam Khader, a Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) member at his house in Balata refugee camp in Nablus. Khader is the second legislator arrested by Israel. Marwan Barghouti was arrested April last year and has been in jail since.
17.3.03 Forty Israeli tanks invaded al-Nuseirat refugee camp in Gaza. Israeli helicopters bombarded residential areas, killing seven Palestinians.
23.3.03 Israel announced that the separation wall in the Nablus area will cut into Palestinian land to include an additional 40,000 settlers on the Israeli side.
26.3.03 British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw admitted that the West has been guilty of double standards in relation to Middle East policy. Straw was referring to Arab accusations that Western nations insist Iraq implement UN resolutions while allowing Israel to flout them.
26.3.03 Israeli PM Ariel Sharon presented a plan for a Palestinian state to his cabinet. His scheme would confiscate and isolate approximately 50 percent of the West Bank along the Jordan River valley.
27.3.03 An Israeli helicopter fired missiles at a Palestinian border security site in Beit Hanoun, killing two members of the Palestinian security forces.
30.3.03 A Palestinian blew himself up outside a café in Netanya, north of Tel Aviv, injuring 50 people. Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility for the attack noting that it took place on the twenty-seventh anniversary of Land Day, which commemorates those Palestinians killed during anti-settlement demonstrations in the Galilee in 1976.
In this period, in the Palestinian territories, 202 Palestinians were killed by Israeli security forces, 33 under the age of 18. Three Palestinians were killed by Israeli civilians. Five Israeli civilians were killed and 14 Israeli security forces personnel were killed by Palestinians. Within the Green Line, five Palestinians were killed by Israeli security forces. Thirty Israeli civilians were killed by Palestinians. Four Israeli security forces personnel were killed by Palestinians.
Above figures from B'Tselem