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Pregnant Palestinian Slain in West Bank, Arab Dies of Wounds

March 1, 1991

JERUSALEM (AP) _ A pregnant Palestinian woman was found strangled and stabbed to death in the occupied West Bank today, and a leaflet accused her of collaborating with Israeli authorities.

Arab reports identified the mother of four as Basma Abdul-Kader, 35, of Nablus and said she was eight months pregnant with her fifth child.

A leaflet signed by a previously unknown Palestinian group, ″the attacking doves,″ accused Mrs. Abdul-Kader of helping Israeli intelligence agents and claimed responsibility for the killing, the reports said.

The army confirmed the death and said police were investigating.

It was not the first time that a pregnant woman was slain as a suspected collaborator. Last year, a pregnant nurse was stabbed to death in the occupied Gaza Strip on suspicion she was working with Israeli intelligence.

Also in Nablus, doctors at al-Ittihad Hospital said Najib Shewaila, 20, from the Jenin refugee camp died today of a gunshot wound sustained in a clash with the army last Nov. 30.

He had been paralyzed by a bullet in the neck, doctors said.

Mrs. Abdul-Kader’s death raised to 344 the number of Palestinians slain by fellow Arabs during the 3-year-old Palestinian uprising against Israeli occupation. Most were accused of collaborating with Israel.

Shewaila was the 806th Palestinian killed by Israeli soldiers or civilians. Fifty-seven Israelis also have died in the violence.

Also today, the army lifted its curfew on all West Bank cities and towns to allow Muslims to attend Islamic prayers. It was the first time all West Bank Muslims were allowed to pray since the curfew was imposed at the start of the Persian Gulf War on Jan. 17.

In the Gaza Strip, however, Palestinians were confined to their homes today, except for some who live in small farming communities.

The curfew imposed at the start of the Gulf War initially confined all 1.7 million Palestinians in the occupied territories to their homes 24 hours a day. In recent weeks, however, the curfew has been lifted during some daytime hours to allow people to shop.

Palestinians are not allowed to leave their home towns without special permits, and few can travel to Jerusalem or Israel.

In Jerusalem today, about 14,000 people attended prayer services at the Al Aqsa mosque in the walled old city, Israel radio said. It was the largest attendance since the war began.

Jerusalem Police Chief Chaim Albaldes said security was increased to prevent violence. None was reported.

Update hourly