Slain Palestinians not linked to terror

Jan. 14, 2008 at 2:43 PM
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JERUSALEM, Jan. 14 (UPI) -- A report by Israel's Shin Bet says more than 20 percent of Palestinians killed by Israel security forces in 2006 and 2007 were not linked to terrorism.

Shin Bet security service chief, Yuval Diskin, says say 810 Palestinians were killed in the Gaza Strip during 2006 and 2007-- 356 Palestinian 2006 and 454 in 2007. Of those killed, Diskin estimated 200 were not clearly linked to terrorist organizations, Ha'aretz reported.

The statistics cited by Diskin were less than what an investigation by Ha'aretz came up with over the same period. Figures by the news organization show 816 Palestinians were killed during two-year period and 360 were civilians not linked to armed organizations.

"About 5 percent of the militants in the Gaza Strip have been killed," Israeli Internal Security Minister Avi Dichter said in a statement. "This asymmetry is part of a war of attrition. Sderot's (Israel) residents are still leaving the city."

Officials say despite the criticism, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Ehud Barak plan to continue with the current policy.

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