- Palestinian security officials said Sunday morning that
IDF troops had storming Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat's
three-story office building in Ramallah, and were exchanging fire with
Palestinian guards a few meters from the Palestinian leader. The army,
however, denied that troops had entered the building.
- Palestinian sources said soldiers entered the dining
room adjacent to Arafat's office and that several members of his presidential
guard had been injured by shots fired by the troops.
- Palestinian Information Minister Yasser Abed Rabbo said
soldiers had "started entering Arafat's offices and now they are exchanging
fire with the president's bodyguards. There are very serious clashes and
the president's guards are fighting against the invaders. There are several
- Senior Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat told CNN that
IDF soldiers on the same level as the room to which Arafat has been confined.
He repeated several times that hey hit by a stray bullet during the gunfire
exchanges taking place in and around his offices.
- Among the dozens of Palestinians holed up and besieged
by the Israel Defense Forces in Arafat's offices are a number of senior
PA members, together with a number of wanted men arrested by the PA in
the past, including the murderers of Tourism Minister Rehavam Ze'evi, who
was gunned down by the PFLP outside his hotel room in Jerusalem last October.
- Palestinian sources said Saturday night that Arafat had
received an ultimatum from Israel that if he did not hand over individuals
in the building who were on Israel's wanted list, IDF soldiers would enter
the building to capture the men themselves. Israel Radio quoted security
sources Saturday saying that the PA leader had not been given any ultimatum
but had been presented with a demand by Israel for the wanted men to be
- Military sources told Ha'aretz that Arafat's personal
bureau, on the second floor of the building that houses