01/17/2005, 00.00
PALESTINE - ISRAEL
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PLO calls for an end to anti-Israel violence because it harms Palestinians

Pakistani researcher reports that Palestinian attackers are neither poor nor desperate: two in three are educated.

Ramallah (AsiaNews/Agencies) – In a statement released last night, the executive committee of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) has called on the more extremist Palestinian groups to stop violent attacks against Israel because they provide an excuse for Israeli military operations against the Palestinians.

The PLO statement follows last Thursday's deadly attack at the Karni crossing in which six Israeli civilians were killed and which led the Sharon government to seal off Gaza, break off all contacts with the Palestinian National Authority and give its army the green light to crackdown on Palestinian militant groups.

The PLO's statement on Sunday calls on militants to "stop all the military action that might harm our national goals and give the Israelis an excuse to obstruct Palestinian stability".

Meanwhile, an Australia-based Pakistani sociologist, Riaz Hassan, reported in a recent conference held in Islamabad the results of his research on suicide bombers.

About 66 per cent of Palestinian suicide bombers were high school or university graduates, thus countering the view that ignorance was behind their suicidal action.

Mr Hassan also noted that suicide attacks have increased in recent years. In the 1980s there were 31 cases; in 2003 alone, there were 98, mostly in Palestine and Iraq.

He said suicide bombing was a privileged instrument of terrorist violence because of its efficacy—although constituting only three per cent of all terrorist actions, it was responsible for 48 per cent of all deaths. (LF)

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