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7 Palestinians killed in 5 Israeli attacks

Published Aug. 28, 2005

Seven Palestinians were killed in scattered violence on Monday that included an Israeli airstrike in the Gaza Strip and an incursion by soldiers into a West Bank refugee camp.

Palestinian gunmen in Gaza City abducted an Israeli Arab working for CNN, the network reported. The gunmen stopped a taxi carrying a CNN crew and seized Riad Ali, a producer, said Ben Wedeman, a correspondent for the network who was present.

"We had no indication that this was going to happen," Wedeman said on CNN. "They just asked, "Which one of you is Riad?' and that was it."

No group claimed responsibility, and it was not clear who was behind the kidnapping, or why the kidnappers had singled out Ali.

Israel has also been hitting hard at Palestinian factions in Gaza, and a missile strike on Monday killed one Palestinian militant and wounded three others while they where traveling in a vehicle near the southern town of Khan Younis, Palestinian witnesses and hospital officials said.

The attack killed Ali al-Shaer, a member of the Popular Resistance Committees, a faction behind many attacks in Gaza. The main target was Muhammad Abu Nsair, who is responsible for mortar and bomb attacks against Israeli soldiers and civilians, Israeli security officials said. Nsair suffered serious wounds, Palestinian hospital officials said.

In a separate incident in southern Gaza, a Palestinian man in his 50s was fatally shot outside a school, Palestinians said. The Israeli military said it had fired in a nearby area to guard against a possible attack, but was not aware of hitting anyone.

Israeli troops shot dead two Palestinians who were carrying explosives and crawling toward the perimeter fence in northern Gaza, the military said.

In the West Bank, a Jewish settler was arrested by the Israeli police after he fatally shot a Palestinian taxi driver on a road outside the city of Nablus, the police said.

The Israeli man, who was not identified, told the police he was driving when the taxi tried to force him off the road.

Also in the West Bank, the military said soldiers had shot two armed Palestinians who approached troops during an operation in the Balata refugee camp in Nablus. Palestinian hospital workers said both men were killed.

In Jerusalem, the Israeli authorities announced the arrest of five border police officers who are accused of abusing Palestinian men in an incident this month.

Priests brawl over opening of shrine door

JERUSALEM _ Greek Orthodox and Franciscan priests got into a fist fight Monday at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, Christianity's holiest shrine, after arguing over whether a door in the basilica should be closed during a procession.

Dozens of people were slightly hurt in the brawl at the shrine, built over the spot where tradition says Jesus was crucified and buried. Four priests were detained, said police spokesman Shmulik Ben-Ruby.

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.