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News and views on Israel, Zionism and the war on terrorism.

November 22, 2002

Israelis troops raid Bethlehem

Payback: but is this sufficient?
Israeli troops and armoured vehicles entered the West Bank city of Bethlehem before dawn on Friday, following a suicide bombing that killed 11 in Jerusalem a day earlier.
Soldiers have been conducting house-to-house searches for 30 suspected militants. Nine people had been held by daybreak, Israeli and Palestinian sources said.

Troops surrounded the Dheisheh refugee camp and blocked off Bethlehem's Manger Square and the Church of the Nativity to prevent Palestinian gunmen seeking refuge there.

The suspected Jerusalem bomber, whom Israeli police identified as 23-year-old Nael Abu Hilail, was believed to have come from Bethlehem.

The alleged bomber's father expressed pride

Israeli military spokesperson Sharon Feingold told the BBC that Palestinian militants had set up a "terror infrastructure" in Bethlehem since Israeli troops pulled out in August as part of a confidence-building security deal.