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More West Bank clashes as Gaza assault goes on

Mourners clashed with Israeli troops at two funerals Nov. 21 as Palestinians across the West Bank continued to protest the Israeli assault on Gaza. In Hebron, hundreds attended the funeral for Hamdi Mohammad Jawwad al-Falah, shot by Israeli troops at a protest in the city's Bir al-Mahjar neighborhood. After the burial, hundreds of young men began marching towards a Jewish settlement, to be set upon by Israeli forces with tear gas and rubber bullets. In Ramallah, thousands attended the funeral for Rushdi Tamimi, a police officer who died Nov. 19, two days after he was shot by Israeli forces at a protest in Nabi Saleh. A video of that protest shows Israeli forces threatening demonstrators who tried to administer first aid. At Nabi Saleh, where he was buried. mourners chanted "Martyr, rest, we will pick up the fight." After the procession, masked youths hurled rocks at Israeli soldiers lined up at the village entrance, who again responded with tear-gas and rubber bullets.

East of Hebron, Israeli forces closed the entrance to Bani Naim village amid clashes between residents and soldiers. In the northern West Bank, hundreds of protesters marched to al-Jalama crossing to protest the attacks on Gaza. Israeli forces declared al-Jalama village a closed military zone, and more clashes ensued. (Maan News Agency, Nov. 21)

Israeli warplanes and naval forces continued to pound Gaza, destroying several government buildings. The Israeli army said it hit "dozens of terror infrastructure sites throughout the Gaza Strip" including the Ministry of Internal Security, a police compound and tunnels used to transport fuel. Talks in Cairo failed to produce a ceasefire, and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton signaled a truce could take days to achieve, after a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Clinton is due to meet President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah on today. Some 145 Palestinians have been killed since Israel launched "Operation Pillar of Cloud" on Nov. 14. (Ma'an News Agency, Nov. 21)

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