08.28.05 Update

8.28.2005

A Palestinian suicide bomber wounded 20 people in southern Israel. (JTA) The terrorist tried to board a bus in Beersheba on Sunday but, after being chased away by suspicious security guards, he blew himself up outside. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack. Both Hamas and Islamic Jihad had vowed to retaliate for Israel's killing last week of five Palestinian terrorists in the West Bank. The Beersheba bombing was seen as an embarrassment for Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who earlier Sunday said that the cease-fire he declared with Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon last February would hold indefinitely.

Israeli military rabbis began moving Jewish graves out of the Gaza Strip. (JTA) The exhumation of 48 Israelis buried in the cemetery of the main Gaza settlement bloc, Gush Katif, began Sunday, with the remains transferred to Israel. The next of kin will decide where to rebury their loved ones. The entire operation, one of the final stages of Israel's evacuation of Gaza settlements, is expected to take no more than five days.

Israel approved the transfer of its security control of the Gaza Strip's southern border to Egypt. (JTA) By a vote of 18-2, Israel's Cabinet on Sunday agreed to allow Egypt to post 750 troops along the 8-mile corridor to stop arms smuggling from the Sinai to Palestinian terrorists in Gaza. Some Israeli security experts, including the chairman of the Knesset's Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, Yuval Steinitz, had come out against the deal, which effectively rescinds a clause in the 1979 Camp David peace accord with Egypt requiring that the Sinai remain demilitarized.

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