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The BBC's Hilary Andersson, in Jerusalem
"This is no longer anger: it is hatred"
 real 56k

The BBC's Frank Gardner in Jerusalem
"Protesters have taken to the streets once more"
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Saturday, 28 October, 2000, 15:09 GMT 16:09 UK
Violence erupts at Mid-East burials
Tulkarm funeral on Friday
Burying those killed in the violence is a daily event
There have been renewed clashes between Israeli troops and Palestinian demonstrators in the Gaza Strip as thousands of mourners turned out to bury those killed in violence on Friday.

At least four Palestinians are reported to have been shot and wounded by Israeli troops, including a 14-year-old boy who was hit in the head.

Protesters fired machine-guns in the air as they carried the flag-draped body of one of Friday's dead, Jabber al-Mishal, to his grave.


I'm frustrated. I'm just as frustrated as you are, and it's heartbreaking

Bill Clinton
Stones and petrol bombs were thrown at Israeli soldiers nearby, who responded with tear gas and rubber-coated bullets.

There were minor clashes in the flashpoint town of Ramallah in the West Bank, where the funerals of two others victims of Friday's violence are taking place.

A BBC correspondent in Jerusalem says Saturday was relatively quiet in the territories after Friday's fierce fighting.

The latest street battles came after President Clinton expressed his frustration at the resurgence of the violence.

He said the renewal of fatal clashes, after a brief lull, was "heartbreaking", adding that there could be no resumption of peace talks as long as the fighting continued.

Overnight, Israeli helicopter gunships attacked houses in the West Bank village of Beit Jala, reportedly in response to Palestinian shooting at the nearby Jewish settlement of Gilo.

Talks on hold

Friday's clashes in the West Bank and Gaza began after weekly Muslim prayers, and came in response to calls by Palestinian militants for another "day of rage" against Israeli occupation.

President Clinton
President Clinton: Frustrated
President Clinton, speaking to journalists at the White House, said: "I'm frustrated. I'm just as frustrated as you are, and it's heartbreaking."

He acknowledged that the resurgence of violence was an obstacle to his plans to invite Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak and Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat to Washington for separate talks on peace.

"There has to be a much lower level of violence before they can meet together and talk about long-term prospects for peace," he said.

Suicide volunteers

The two men agreed to a ceasefire at talks held in the Egyptian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh 11 days ago, but the understanding was not respected on the ground.

Barak
Ehud Barak says he will still keep the peace process alive
President Clinton also spoke to the German Chancellor, Gerhard Schroeder, who travels to the Middle East on Saturday for a five-day visit.

The BBC Middle East correspondent, Frank Gardner, says a reduction in violence seems unlikely in the short term, as few young Arabs now believe that negotiations will ever deliver a real Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital.

He adds that some are now volunteering to carry out the suicide bomb attacks that the militant Islamic group, Hamas, says it is planning inside Israel

At least 150 people were reported to have been wounded in Friday's clashes.

Coalition nearer

The latest deaths brought to nearly 140 the number killed, all but of eight them Arabs, during bloodshed which began four weeks ago.

Meanwhile, Mr Barak says he is continuing efforts to form an emergency government of national unity.

The opposition Likud party says it will not join any administration without a power of veto over the peace process with the Palestinians.

However, Israeli media report that Mr Barak and the hawkish Likud leader, Ariel Sharon, are drawing closer to a coalition deal.

Mr Barak maintains that as long as he remains prime minister he will try to keep the peace process alive.

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See also:

27 Oct 00 | Middle East
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25 Oct 00 | Middle East
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