Sunday, August 21, 2005

Israel set to remove final settlement in Gaza

Israeli forces plan to clear Gaza's last remaining Jewish settlement on Monday, completing a swift evacuation that Prime Minister
Ariel Sharon says aims to end 38 years of occupation.The army expected little resistance from some 496 settlers at Netzarim, a remote enclave in central Gaza often attacked by Palestinian militants. "We have been in touch with the residents and hope for a quiet removal," a military source said.
But there was less optimism over Sanur and Homesh, two enclaves in the northern West Bank next on the removal roster, where Israeli troops scuffled with ultranationalists on Sunday.
Israeli forces finished emptying the main Gaza settlement bloc of Gush Katif on Sunday. Bulldozers set about razing the red-roofed homes under a deal with the Palestinians, who seek Gaza, captured by Israel in a 1967 war, for a future state."Truly, you have done something here that was unbearably difficult very difficult for the residents, difficult for you, but essential for the State of Israel," Sharon said in a speech to army evacuation squads...


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