356 / 14704 Results
  • November 29, 2000

    Israeli-Palestinian clashes continue, killing at least 4 Palestinians. Another 2 Palestinians die of injuries received earlier. Palestinian gunmen critically wound a Jewish settler...

    Read more
  • November 13, 2000

    Israeli-Palestinian clashes continue, leaving 2 Palestinians dead. A 3d Palestinian dies of injuries received earlier. In Gaza, Palestinian snipers open fire on a convoy of Jewish settlers under...

    Read more
  • October 7, 2000

    Israeli-Palestinian fighting in the West Bank and Gaza abates slightly but escalates again this evening, leaving at least 3 Palestinians dead. The most serious incident is in Nablus, where the IDF...

    Read more
  • September 29, 2000

    Palestinian-Israeli clashes sparked by Likud MK Sharon's visit to Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount on 9/28 continue for a 2d day. Palestinian worshipers leaving Friday prayers at al-Aqsa Mosque throw...

    Read more
  • September 28, 2000

    In Washington, the Israeli, PA delegations end consultations with the U.S. peace team, return home. (REU 9/28; NYT 10/2; WP 10/22)

    With the authorization of Barak and Ben-Ami (who is also...

    Read more
  • September 27, 2000

    In Jerusalem, Israeli police inform Waqf officials that Likud MK Sharon has requested to visit the Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount on 9/28, just before Rosh Hashanah on 9/29. The Waqf urges against...

    Read more
  • August 24, 2000

    PM Barak says that if peace talks with the PA fail, he would ask the Likud party to joint a national unity government. Likud head Ariel Sharon, who opposes Barak's peace policies, says he would...

    Read more
  • August 15, 2000

    Lebanon's daily al-Nahar runs an interview with Lebanese pres. Lahoud in which he says Lebanon declined an offer of $20 b.to give Palestinian refugees in the country permanent status. (JP [...

    Read more
  • September 2, 1999

    Secy. of State Albright meets with Egyptian pres. Mubarak in Alexandria. Albright, Mubarak had hoped to host the signing of a revised Wye agmt., but Israel, the PA still differ over the prisoner...

    Read more
  • June 8, 1999

    Arab Liberation Front, Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP), Fatah, FIDA, Palestinian Liberation Front, Palestinian People' Party (PPP), Palestinian Popular Struggle Front (PPSF...

    Read more
  • May 27, 1999

    PM-elect Barak reiterates his pledge to withdraw fr. Lebanon, seek peace with Syria within a yr.; says he will try to negotiate a s. Lebanon pullout with Syria, rather than withdraw unilaterally...

    Read more
  • February 28, 1999

    PM Netanyahu, FM Ariel Sharon go to Amman to hold 1st mtg. with King Abdallah. (WT 2/28; RJ 2/28 in WNC 3/1; MA 2/28, JT, MA 3/1 in WNC 3/2; NYT, WP 3/1; JP, PR 3/5; MEI 3/12)

    ...
    Read more
  • January 23, 1999

    In Sharm al-Shaykh, Arafat briefs Pres. Mubarak on continued Israeli refusal to implement Wye agmt., ongoing settlement construction; discusses regional developments. (MENA 1/23 in WNC 1/26)

    ...
    Read more
  • November 16, 1998

    As the Knesset begins debate on ratification of the 10/23 Wye River Memorandum, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu suspends the agmt.'s implementation, saying he will not carry out the 1st of 3 stages...

    Read more
  • November 15, 1998

    For 2d day in a row, Pres. Clinton aborts a strike on Iraq, this time accepting Iraq's clarifications on renewing cooperation with the UN. Clinton also halts new deployments to the Gulf, but warns...

    Read more
  • October 6, 1998

    Secy. Albright holds 2d round of mtgs. with Arafat, Netanyahu. Netanyahu then heads to Ariel settlement for celebration marking Ariel's new city status (see 6/11) also attended by DM Mordechai,...

    Read more
  • March 8, 1998

    In London, PM Netanyahu ends unsuccessful 4-day EU tour to promote new peace initiative based on a Camp David-style summit with the PA, conditional s. Lebanon withdrawal. (MA 3/8, IDF...

    Read more
  • February 17, 1998

    Saying that "force can never be the first answer, but sometimes it's the only answer," U.S. Pres. Bill Clinton warns Iraq that he is prepared to order a campaign of airstrikes to "...

    Read more
  • January 3, 1998

    In Amman, a gunman fires at Rahim Tahir Ahmad al-Sudani, the Iraqi embassy's trade adviser, hitting his car but leaving him unhurt. At least 9 Iraqis are arrested in the attack, but the motive is...

    Read more
  • November 30, 1997

    Israeli cabinet agrees in principle to carry out a single FRD, insists that Netanyahu specify the areas Israel will retain under a final settlement before details of FRD can be discussed, forms...

    Read more
  • November 11, 1997

    In Cairo, PA negotiators brief Egypt's Pres. Mubarak on 11/3-6 Washington talks with Israel. Citing the talks' failure, Egypt announces that despite U.S. pressure, it will boycott the Doha...

    Read more
  • November 4, 1997

    Jordan holds parliamentary elections. Progovernment independents win 62 of 80 seats. 9 oppositon parties boycott, lowering voter turnout to just over 50%, but 8 Islamists win seats as independents...

    Read more
  • September 28, 1997

    PM Netanyahu, DM Mordechai, Infrastructures M Sharon secretly fly to Amman to discuss attack on Hamas's Mishal. King Hussein refuses to meet them, sends Crown Prince Hassan instead. (NYT 10/10) (...

    Read more
  • June 16, 1997

    With PM Netanyahu's knowledge, Israeli Infrastructure M Ariel Sharon secretly holds mtg. with Arafat dep. Abbas to discuss each side's position on final status negotiations. FM Levy, DM Mordechai...

    Read more
  • May 7, 1997

    Regarding the assertion concerning Mega (see 5/7), an unnamed senior U.S. official confirms that special envoy Ross read Netanyahu the U.S. letter of assurances to the PA but did not give him a...

    Read more
  • November 22, 1996

    At the weekly PA Executive Authority (EA), PLO Exec. Comm. meeting, the executive urges Palestinians to reclaim confiscated land in the West Bank, Gaza; advocates "popular confrontation" every...

    Read more
  • November 3, 1996

    Palestinian home in Hebron is fire bombed, injuring 5 Palestinians, 1 critically. PA police suspect settlers. (MEI 11/8)

    Israeli Infrastructure M Sharon unveils plans to build 2 new...

    Read more
  • September 4, 1996

    1st Netanyahu, Arafat mtg. is held at Erez. Netanyahu says he is prepared to negotiate a final peace, improve Palestinian economic conditions, allow 50,000 Palestinian workers into Israel (see 8/5...

    Read more
  • July 5, 1996

    EA, PLO Exec. Comm. mtg. is held in Ramallah. (VOP 7/6 in FBIS 7/8)

    UNRWA opens new headquarters in Gaza. Headquarters Coordinator April Glaspie, Arafat sign agmt. regulating UNRWA's legal...

    Read more
  • June 17, 1996

    In Jerusalem, the new Knesset is sworn in. Netanyahu signs final coalition agmts. (with UTJ [4 seats], Yisrael BaAliya [7 seats]) needed to secure his coalition government. Debate with Sharon over...

    Read more

Israeli-Palestinian clashes continue, killing at least 4 Palestinians. Another 2 Palestinians die of injuries received earlier. Palestinian gunmen critically wound a Jewish settler driving through the West Bank. The IDF bulldozes over 87 dunams of Palestinian agricultural land nr. Kissufim crossing, Netzarim Junction; opens fire on residential areas of al-Amal, Hebron, Khan Yunis. (LAW, NYT, PCHR, WT 11/30; PCHR 12/18)

Barak adviser and chief negotiator Gilead Sher makes a low-key trip to Ramallah to meet with Palestinian Council (PC) speaker and senior negotiator Ahmad Qurai`. No details are released. (MA [Internet] 12/12)

Likud MK Ariel Sharon says he will challenge Barak for the premiership, but no Likud mbrs. publicly support him, waiting to see if fmr. Likud PM Benjamin Netanyahu, considered a stronger candidate, also announces. (MM 11/29; NYT, WP, WT 11/30; MM 12/4; JP 12/7; MM 12/8) (see 9/27)

Israeli-Palestinian clashes continue, leaving 2 Palestinians dead. A 3d Palestinian dies of injuries received earlier. In Gaza, Palestinian snipers open fire on a convoy of Jewish settlers under IDF escort, killing 2 IDF soldiers, wounding 6 settlers. A Jewish settler driving in the West Bank, an Israeli truck driver carry goods to a Jewish settlement in Gaza are also shot dead by Palestinian snipers, marking the highest 1-day toll for Israeli Jews since clashes began. The IDF seals areas A, halts all traffic on and leading to the main north+nsouth road in Gaza. IDF shelling is reported Aqabat Jabir camp, Bayt Jala, Bethlehem, Jericho, Nablus, al-Qarara. In Gaza, the IDF levels another 112 dunams of Palestinian agricultural land, 1 Palestinian home, a livestock pen, and an irrigation system. (AP, LAW, MM, PCHR 11/13; LAW, MEZ, MM, NYT, WP 11/14; NYT 11/15; WJW 11/16, 11/23)

Barak, attending a fund-raiser in Chicago for the United Jewish Communities General Assembly (UJCGA), lists 5 requirements of any final status agmt. with the PA. More than 1,000 Americans rally outside the UJCGA venue to protest Israeli violence against the Palestinians. Similar rallies are held in New York, where Likud MK Sharon is addressing a New York Post seminar, and in Philadelphia. (WP 11/14; WJW 11/16)

With Shas support, Barak survives another no-confidence vote in the Knesset. (AFP [Internet] 11/13) (see 11/6)

Israeli-Palestinian fighting in the West Bank and Gaza abates slightly but escalates again this evening, leaving at least 3 Palestinians dead. The most serious incident is in Nablus, where the IDF, implementing the Sharm agmts., turns over Joseph's Tomb to the PSF. Palestinians celebrating the IDF pullback overrun the PSF, destroy the tomb. In response, armed Jewish settlers roam areas around West Bank settlements, stoning and firing at Palestinian cars, killing 1 Palestinian. Inside Israel, Jews fr. Upper Nazareth rampage through Arab Nazareth throwing stones at Israeli Palestinians, sparking a riot; when Israeli Arabs start to fight back, Israeli riot police intervene, using tear gas and live ammunition, shooting dead 2 Israeli Arabs. In Tiberias, Jews vandalize a historic mosque. The IDF moves tanks into the West Bank to guard the Jewish settlement of Psagot, which has been the target of Palestinian sniping. At Rafah airport, Palestinians fire on a bus Israeli airport workers, injuring 8. Israel shuts the airport. (LAW 10/7; MENA, RL 10/7, al-Quds 10/8, AFP, Le Monde 10/10 in WNC 10/10; ADM, NYT, WP, WT 10/8; MM, NYT, WT 10/9; AYM 10/9, MA 10/10, 10/11 in WNC 10/12; NYT 10/10; WJW 10/12; MEI 10/13; WJW 10/19; WP 10/28)

Barak calls up IDF reservists, sets an ultimatum of 48 hrs. for Palestinians to halt their assaults on IDF outposts, Jewish settlements or "we will regard this as a cessation by Arafat of the peace process, and we will order the army to use all means at its disposal." Barak also says he is considering forming a "unity government" with Likud MK Sharon. (AYM 10/7, al-Quds 10/9 in WNC 10/12; NYT, WP, WT 10/8; AYM 10/8 in WNC 10/13; MM 10/9; Le Monde 10/10 in WNC 10/10; MM 10/11; JP, MEI 10/13)

Nr. Shaba` Farms, IDF soldiers fire across the blue line into Lebanon at 100s of Palestinian refugees staging a protest, killing 2, wounding 15. In response, Hizballah guerrillas cross into Golan Heights, kidnap 3 IDF soldiers; fire rockets at the IDF's Shaba` outpost, injuring 6 soldiers. Barak reinforces the border area, sends Israeli warplanes and attack helicopters into Lebanon to strike Hizballah targets, injuring 4 Lebanese civilians. U.S.'s Albright phones Lebanese pres. Lahoud, Syrian pres. Asad to urge them to intercede with Hizballah to release the IDF soldiers. France, Germany, the Red Cross, Russia, the UN open channels with Hizballah, which demands Israel release at least 19 Lebanese political prisoners (kidnaped by the IDF in Lebanon, held without trial for as long as 20 yrs.) in exchange for the soldiers. (CNN [Internet] 10/7; RL 10/7, AYM 10/8, Interfax 10/9, Le Monde 10/10 in WNC 10/10; NYT, WP, WT 10/8; Manar TV [Internet], MM, NYT, WT 10/9; al-Quds 10/9, DUS, al-Safir 10/10 in WNC 10/12; MM, NYT, WP 10/10; NYT, WJW, WP 10/12; JP, MEI 10/13; JP 10/27, 11/3)

After 6 days of debate, the UNSC passes (14 to 0, with the U.S. abstaining) a watered down resolution that condemns the "excessive use of force" against the Palestinians but does not mention Israel by name. U.S. Amb. Richard Holbrooke threatened to veto stronger language. (AP 10/7; NYT, WP, WT 10/8; AYM 10/8 in WNC 10/13; MM, NYT, WT 10/9; CSM, WP 10/10; MEI 10/13)

In Amman, Jordanian police open fire on Palestinian refugees demonstrating for the closure of the Israeli emb., killing 1, arresting 97. Demonstrations condemning Israeli violence, U.S. support of Israel are held in Bahrain, Canada, Egypt, France, Iraq, Kuwait, Lebanon, Mauritania, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Turkey, the UAE, and Yemen. In the U.S., rallies are held in Albuquerque, Dearborn, New York. (BBC, al-Jazeera TV [Internet] 10/7; AFP, ATL, MENA 10/7, JT 10/8 in WNC 10/10; Daily Star 10/12 in WNC 10/13; Gulf News [Internet], NYT 10/8; MM 10/11; AYM 10/11 in WNC 10/12; MEI 10/13)

Palestinian-Israeli clashes sparked by Likud MK Sharon's visit to Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount on 9/28 continue for a 2d day. Palestinian worshipers leaving Friday prayers at al-Aqsa Mosque throw stones at the estimated 2,000 Israeli sharp shooters and riot police surrounding the site, who in turn storm the mosque compound, shooting live ammunition and rubber bullets, killing 4 Palestinians, wounding around 220. At least 2 Palestinians are killed elsewhere in East Jerusalem, and other clashes are reported nr. Bethlehem, in Hebron. Barak meets with his security cabinet to formulate a strategy to contain the violence, calls Arafat to say that "further violence will not be tolerated." Arafat calls Pres. Clinton to urge him to press Barak to pull back forces fr. the holy site. (LAW, MM 9/29; NYT, WP, WT 9/30; HJ, al-Quds 9/30 in WNC 10/2; CSM, HA [Internet], JP [Internet] 10/2; MENA 10/2 in WNC 10/3; MEI 10/13)

PA-Israeli security cooperation in the West Bank deteriorates. In Qalqilya, a PA policeman working on a joint patrol shoots, kills an IDF colleague. Arafat phones Barak to express condolences, promise an investigation. (MM 9/29; NYT, WP, WT 9/30; WT 10/4)

In Wihdat camp in Jordan, 6,000 Palestinian refugees attend a demonstration sponsored by the Muslim Brotherhood to protest Israeli actions in Jerusalem. (DUS 9/30 in WNC 10/2; JT [Internet] 10/1)

In Washington, the Israeli, PA delegations end consultations with the U.S. peace team, return home. (REU 9/28; NYT 10/2; WP 10/22)

With the authorization of Barak and Ben-Ami (who is also Israel's internal security M), Likud MK Sharon leads a group of Likud MKs into the Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount under heavy escort and police helicopter guard to assert Israeli sovereignty over the disputed site. 1,000 Israeli riot police are deployed on the buildings surrounding the mosque compound. Sharon attempts to enter the Marwani Mosque (which some Jews consider to be the site of Solomon's stables) but is barred by 200 Palestinians, including several Israeli Arab MKs, who sit peacefully in his path. After Sharon leaves, Palestinians scuffle with and throw stones at police, who fire tear gas, rubber bullets at them. 24 Palestinians, 25 policemen are injured. Rioting spreads throughout East Jerusalem and to Ramallah, where 6 Palestinians are injured. (IsRN, LAW, MA [Internet], MM 9/28; HJ 9/28, al-Quds, MENA 9/29 in WNC 10/2; CSM, NYT, WP, WT 9/29; WP 10/1; NYT 10/3; WJW 10/5; MEI 10/13)

In Gaza, another roadside bomb explodes nr. an IDF patrol causing no injuries. An IDF soldier injured by a roadside bomb on 9/27 dies. (WP, WT 9/29)

Rachelim settlement issues tenders for construction of 14 new housing units and related infrastructure. (IsRN 9/28)

In Jerusalem, Israeli police inform Waqf officials that Likud MK Sharon has requested to visit the Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount on 9/28, just before Rosh Hashanah on 9/29. The Waqf urges against the visit, warning it would be viewed as a political provocation and could spark violence. (MM 9/27)

In Washington, U.S. special envoy Ross holds separate mtgs. with Israeli, PA teams. The PA team asks the U.S. to urge Barak against allowing MK Sharon to visit the Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount. (WP 9/28; Nightline 10/10)

Israel's Atty. Gen. Elyakim Rubenstein throws out the bribery and corruption case against fmr. Likud PM Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife, clearing the way for Netanyahu's political comeback. Rubenstein says that although the evidence against Netanyahu could not support a conviction, "It is unthinkable that . . . matters should be presented as if everything was proper and clean; far from it." (IsRN, MM 9/27; MM, NYT, WP, WT 9/28; MM 9/29; WJW 10/5; JP 10/6)

Nr. Netzarim Junction in Gaza, 2 roadside bombs are detonated as an IDF convoy escorting Jewish settlers passes, injuring 2 soldiers. (MM, NYT, WP 9/28) (see 9/13)

PM Barak says that if peace talks with the PA fail, he would ask the Likud party to joint a national unity government. Likud head Ariel Sharon, who opposes Barak's peace policies, says he would reject the offer. (NYT 8/25; WP 8/31; MA 9/7 in WNC 9/8) (see 8/20)

In Alexandria, Israeli chief negotiator Ben-Ami, Egyptian pres. Mubarak discuss the Jerusalem impasse. Ben-Ami says Mubarak offered 2 compromise proposals, but Egypt does not confirm. (WP 8/24; MENA 8/24 in WNC 8/28; JP [Internet] 8/25; MENL, NYT 8/26; MM 8/29; MEI 9/1)

Lebanon's daily al-Nahar runs an interview with Lebanese pres. Lahoud in which he says Lebanon declined an offer of $20 b.to give Palestinian refugees in the country permanent status. (JP [Internet], Reuters [Internet] 8/15; MENA 8/15 in WNC 8/16; JT, MM, WT 8/16)

In Cairo, a delegation of senior PA negotiators (comprising Arafat deputy Mahmud Abbas, Information M Yasir `Abid Rabbuh, Local Government M Erakat, PC speaker Qurai`) discusses strategies for the PA-Israeli talks with Egyptian FM Musa, reportedly briefs him on a new U.S. proposal for Jerusalem. (MENA 8/15 in WNC 8/16; MM 8/16; MENL 8/17; HA [Internet] 8/18)

Led by MK Ariel Sharon, the Likud party calls a special session of the Knesset that votes (39-1, with 80 MKs absent) to convene a 2d special session on 8/28 to debate a resolution that would bar Barak fr. renewing the peace talks with the PA without 1st holding new elections. (MM, NYT, WT 8/16)

The PA begins construction on the Gaza port. (HJ 8/15 in WNC 8/17; JT [Internet], MA [Internet], MENL 8/16)

Secy. of State Albright meets with Egyptian pres. Mubarak in Alexandria. Albright, Mubarak had hoped to host the signing of a revised Wye agmt., but Israel, the PA still differ over the prisoner release issue. Albright phones Barak in Israel, meets with Arafat in Alexandria, then flies to Jerusalem to meet with Barak for 3 hrs. Despite her efforts, Israeli officials say talks are over: "We're looking for . . . answers. It's not a negotiation." Barak issues statement again saying that if the PA does not accept Israel's terms by 9/3, Israel will implement Wye "as written." (AFP, MBC, MENA 9/2 in WNC 9/3; CSM, MM, WP, WT 9/3; WT 9/4)      

Fmr. Israel FM Ariel Sharon wins as position as head of Likud with 53% of the vote, beating Jerusalem mayor Ehud Olmert, MK Meir Shitreet. (MM 9/3; WJW 9/9) (see 5/27)

Israeli police arrest an Israeli Arab for the murder of 2 Jews nr. Megiddo on 8/30. (MM, WP 9/3)

In exchange for a 24-yr. sentence, American Jewish teenager Samuel Sheinbein pleads guilty in an Israeli court to murdering another teenager in Maryland. Sheinbein, who fled to Israel and claimed citizenship through his father, who was born in Mandatory Palestine, could be tried in the U.S. if he were ever to return. (WP 9/2-3; see also NYT, WP, WT 8/25-26; WJW 8/26; JP 9/3, 9/10; WP 10/12; NYT, WP, WT 10/25; WJW 10/28) (see 4/19)

Hizballah fires rockets toward n. Israel in retaliation for IDF shelling that killed Lebanese civilians. (MM 9/2)

Arab Liberation Front, Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP), Fatah, FIDA, Palestinian Liberation Front, Palestinian People' Party (PPP), Palestinian Popular Struggle Front (PPSF), Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) hold unity mtg. in Ramallah, call on PA to hold municipal elections before the end of the yr., urge Palestinians to confront Israeli settlement construction. (HJ 6/10 in WNC 6/14)

Israeli mayor of Jerusalem Ehud Olmert announces bid to lead the Likud party. Other contenders to replace Netanyahu as party head are outgoing FM Sharon, outgoing Finance M Meir Shitreet. (WP, WT 6/9; MM 6/10; JP 6/18; MM 6/30)

Israel, the U.S. call on Iran to immediate release of 13 Iranian Jews who have been jailed since 4/99 on charges of spying for Israel. (MM 6/8; MM, NYT, WT 6/9; IRIB Television, IRNA, TT 6/9 in WNC 6/10; NYT 6/10; WT 6/11, 6/13; JP, MEI, NYT 6/18; GIU, WP 6/22; WP 6/23, 6/29; IRNA 6/30 in WNC 7/1; WJW 7/1; WP 7/3)

In an unprecedented attack, unidentified gunmen open fire on a Lebanese courtroom in Sidon, killing 3 judges, a prosecutor, wounding 5 others, but not freeing any of the defendants in the room. (NYT, WP, WT 6/9; RL, al-Safir 6/9 in WNC 6/10; NYT 6/11; RL 6/11 in WNC 6/14; al-Riyad, Tishrin 6/12 in WNC 6/15; al-Thawra 6/12 in WNC 6/16; MM 6/14; MEI 6/18, 7/16) (see 5/24)

PM-elect Barak reiterates his pledge to withdraw fr. Lebanon, seek peace with Syria within a yr.; says he will try to negotiate a s. Lebanon pullout with Syria, rather than withdraw unilaterally. (WP, WT 5/27; MM 5/28)

At a Likud Central Comm. mtg., PM Netanyahu resigns his Knesset seat, formally announces his resignation fr. politics. The comm. picks FM Ariel Sharon as interim head of the party. (WP, WT 5/27; MM, WJW 6/3; JP 6/25; MM 6/28)

In Damascus, Jordan's Chief of the Royal Court `Abd al-Karim Kabariti briefs Syrian pres. Hafiz al-Asad on King Abdallah's recent international tour; discusses possible 5-way summit to coordinate on the peace process; relays request fr. Arafat to visit Damascus, which Syria turns down. (SANA 5/27 in WNC 5/28; MM 5/28; al-Dustur 5/28 in WNC 6/1; MM 6/3)

In Jerusalem, Israeli police clash with Palestinians, Israeli Peace Now activists demonstrating against Ras al-Amud settlement construction. (LAW 5/27; MM 5/28; MEI 6/4) (see 5/18)

In s. Lebanon, 1 Lebanese civilian is wounded by IDF shelling. (RL 5/27 in WNC 5/28)

PM Netanyahu, FM Ariel Sharon go to Amman to hold 1st mtg. with King Abdallah. (WT 2/28; RJ 2/28 in WNC 3/1; MA 2/28, JT, MA 3/1 in WNC 3/2; NYT, WP 3/1; JP, PR 3/5; MEI 3/12)

Hizballah detonates 2 roadside bombs in s. Lebanon, killing 4 IDF soldiers, including a brig. gen., the highest-ranking Israeli soldier to be killed in Lebanon since the 1982 Israeli invasion. IDF retaliates by striking 4 Hizballah bases n. of the self-declared security zone, including Hizballah headquarters in the center of Baalbeck. Israeli DM Moshe Arens warns that Israel may disavow the 1996 April understanding to avoid civilian targets if Hizballah continues attacks. (AFP, IDF Radio, RL 2/28 in WNC 3/1; MM, NYT, WP, WT 3/1; Interfax, IRNA, JT, Kyodo, RE, SAPA [Johannesburg], SATN 3/1 in WNC 3/2; al-Quds al-Arabi 3/1, al-Akhbar 3/2 in WNC 3/4; WJW 3/4; JP, PR 3/5; MEI 3/12; WT 4/14; MM 4/21) (see 2/23)

100s of Lebanese students use government bulldozers to reopen the road to Arnun, remove IDF earthworks around the village. Lebanese government says it will pave the road to symbolically link Arnun to areas n. of the Israeli-occupied zone. (WT 2/28; al-Ittihad, RMC 2/28 in WNC 3/1; Tehran Times 3/1 in WNC 3/8; MEI 3/12) (see 2/26)

U.S attack on an Iraqi communications station nr. Mosul disrupts oil flow fr. Iraq to Turkey. UN warns that U.S. strikes could frustrate international efforts to supply food, medicine, other necessities to the Iraqi people under the UN Oil-for-Food program. (NYT, WT 3/3; AFP 3/4 in WNC 3/5; MIL 3/6 in WNC 3/16; MEI 3/12)

In Sharm al-Shaykh, Arafat briefs Pres. Mubarak on continued Israeli refusal to implement Wye agmt., ongoing settlement construction; discusses regional developments. (MENA 1/23 in WNC 1/26)

PM Netanyahu dismisses popular DM Mordechai before he has a chance to resign to join a new centrist party with Netanyahu challengers Shahak, Meridor. Netanyahu 1st asks FM Sharon to take DMin. portfolio until the 5/17 elections, but Sharon declines. He then asks another challenger, Arens, to take the post. Arens says that he will decide after the Likud party primaries 1/26, which he is expected to lose. (NYT, WP, WT 1/24; MA 1/24, 1/25 in WNC 1/26; CSM 1/25; al-Ba`th 1/25, Tishrin 1/26 in WNC 1/29; JP, MEI, PR 1/29) (see 1/11)

For 1st time in a wk. U.S. planes attack 2 Iraqi antimissile sites after encountering antiaircraft fire. (NYT, WP, WT 1/24; MENA 1/25 in WNC 1/26) (see 1/14)

1 SLA mbr. is injured during a clash with Hizballah in s. Lebanon. (VOL 1/23 in WNC 1/26)

As the Knesset begins debate on ratification of the 10/23 Wye River Memorandum, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu suspends the agmt.'s implementation, saying he will not carry out the 1st of 3 stages of further redeployment (FRD) required by Wye until PA head Yasir Arafat retracts his 11/15 threat to stage an uprising against Israel if Palestinian access to Jerusalem is blocked. (MM 11/16; CSM, NYT, WP, WT 11/17; WJW 11/19)

U.S. special envoy Dennis Ross meets with Arafat in Jericho. (ITV 11/16 in WNC 11/18; WT 11/17)

In Cairo, Netanyahu political adviser Uzi Arad discusses Wye agmt. with Egyptian FM `Amr Musa, who criticizes Israeli implementation delays. (MENA 11/16 in WNC 11/17, WNC 11/18)

In Gaza, Israel, Jordan, the U.S. meet to discuss the Irbid industrial zone project. (Petra-JNA 11/17 in WNC 11/19; JT 11/23 in WNC 11/24; Petra-JNA 11/23 in WNC 11/30)

In Cairo, Russia, Egypt hold high-level experts mtg. on defense cooperation. Russian DM hopes deepening military ties "will become an important factor of peace and stability in the Middle East." (Interfax, ITAR-TASS, MENA 11/16 in WNC 11/17; MENA 11/17 in WNC 11/18)

After 3 days of talks, Oman, Iran reach military cooperation agmt. to enhance Gulf security, which will include joint exercises. (IRNA 11/16 in WNC 11/17)

PM Netanyahu announces creation of Birthright Israel program, which will pay for any Jew aged 15+n26 to visit Israel in hopes of rebuilding Jewish identity of youth, who more frequently marry non-Jews, are nonpracticing. The program, expected to cost $300 m., will be funded by the Israeli government, major North American Jewish donors, the Council of Jewish Federations. (NYT 11/16; WJW 11/19, 11/26, 1/7)

Citing Israeli FM Ariel Sharon's 11/15 call for settlers to "grab" disputed West Bank land, 30 settlers fr. Keddumim set up "presettlement" on nearby hilltop. (MM 11/17; MA 11/17 in WNC 11/18; WT 11/19)

Palestinians in al-Khader protest confiscation of land for bypass road. (CSM 11/17)

Israel Defense Force (IDF) convoy triggers roadside bomb in s. Lebanon, killing 3 soldiers, wounding 4. Hizballah claims responsibility. (AFP, ITV, RL 11/16 in WNC 11/17; MM, WP 11/17; WT 11/18; MEI 11/27; JP 11/30)

For 2d day in a row, Pres. Clinton aborts a strike on Iraq, this time accepting Iraq's clarifications on renewing cooperation with the UN. Clinton also halts new deployments to the Gulf, but warns that next time Iraq fails to comply, U.S. may not stand down. Arab states welcome U.S. decision; Israel remains skeptical. (CSM, GIU, NYT, WP, WT 11/16)

In a radio address, Arafat says that Palestinians will retain the right to stage a new intifada if Israel blocks their access to Jerusalem's holy sites. (WP, WT 11/16; NYT, WP, WT 11/17)

Further escalating the rhetoric, Israeli FM Sharon urges Jewish settlers to "grab" unoccupied West Bank land so it does not fall under PA control in a final agmt. (AFP [Internet] 11/16; NYT, WP, WT 11/17)

Nr. Bethlehem, Palestinian protesters attempting to prevent bulldozing of 40 acres. of Palestinian land for creation of settler bypass road clash with IDF, leaving 2 soldiers injured. (WP 11/16)

The Sunday Times of London reports that Israel is working on a genetic weapon that would target Arabs but not Jews. Jane's, the respected British defence monitor, finds rumors credible. Porton Down, Britain's biological defense facility, says such a bacterial or viral weapon is theoretically possible. The British Medial Association has reportedly opened an investigation out of concern. (Sunday Times 11/15)

Secy. Albright holds 2d round of mtgs. with Arafat, Netanyahu. Netanyahu then heads to Ariel settlement for celebration marking Ariel's new city status (see 6/11) also attended by DM Mordechai, Infrastructures M Ariel Sharon. (MM 10/6; ITV 10/6, JT 10/7 in WNC 10/8; NYT, WP 10/7; ITV 10/7 in WNC 10/9; NYT 10/8; PR 10/9; MEI 10/16; JP 10/17)

CIA Dir. George Tenet meets with Israeli, PA officials on security MOU. Israel, PA reach understanding on long-delayed opening of Gaza industrial park after an FRD agmt. is finalized, discuss forming an "anti-incitement" comm. (WP 10/8; ITV, QY 10/13 in WNC 10/15; MEI, PR 10/16) (see 9/8)

While Egypt's Mubarak shuttles btwn. Turkey's Demirel in Ankara and Syria's Asad in Damascus, Turkish PM Mesut Yilmaz cancels leaves for all troops, gives Syria a "last warning" on support for Kurdish separatists. (MM 10/6; ATL, ESC Television, INA, ITAR-TASS, MENA 10/6 in WNC 10/7; MENA, al-Sabil, SATN 10/6, ATL, al-Dustur 10/7 in WNC 10/8; CSM, MM, WP, WT 10/7; ATL, HA, HUR, Iran News, al-Liwa', MENA, MIL 10/7, ATL, MIL 10/8 in WNC 10/9; MM 10/8; MA 10/9 in WNC 10/14) (see 10/5)

In s. Lebanon, Hizbullah mbrs. detonate roadside bombs as an IDF convoy passes, killing 2 soldiers, wounding 6. (MM 10/6; WT 10/7; JP 10/17)

In London, PM Netanyahu ends unsuccessful 4-day EU tour to promote new peace initiative based on a Camp David-style summit with the PA, conditional s. Lebanon withdrawal. (MA 3/8, IDF Radio, MA, RJ 3/9 in WNC 3/10; CSM, MM, WP 3/9; MM 3/10) (see 2/23)

In Amman, Israeli Infrastructures M Sharon, Trade M Natan Sharansky meet with King Hussein to try to mend relations damaged after Mossad's attempt on Mishal, discuss economic issues. (Globes [Internet], JTV 3/8, IDF Radio 3/9 in WNC 3/10; NYT 3/9; RJ 3/9, JT 3/10 in WNC 3/11; JT 3/11 in WNC 3/12, JT 3/16 in WNC 3/17, JP 3/21) (see 2/24)

King Hussein makes brief trip to Cairo for talks on peace process with Pres. Mubarak. (JTV, MENA, RJ 3/8, RJ, VOA 3/9 in WNC 3/10)

Israel acknowledges that 18 mos. ago it began to make it harder for non-Jewish immigrants who have married Israelis to stay in the country by refusing to begin citizen proceedings or deporting them. Israel claims that cases of "convenience marriages" are on the rise, while critics claim it is a government policy of religious discrimination. (WP 3/9)

U.S. offers to lift restrictions on number of U.S. satellites it would hire Russia to launch if Moscow halts transfers of long-range missile technology to Iran. Russia denies transfers have taken place. (NYT 3/9; WT 3/10) (see 3/6)

UN Secy. Gen. Annan says that U.S. would need to consult with--but would not necessarily require authorization of--the UNSC before mounting a military strike on Iraq. (WP, WT 3/9; WT 3/12) (see 3/2)

PSF says that it recently uncovered a shop for making Uzi submachine guns in Gaza, does not know how many guns were made or sold. (QY, YA 3/8 in WNC 3/11)

Saying that "force can never be the first answer, but sometimes it's the only answer," U.S. Pres. Bill Clinton warns Iraq that he is prepared to order a campaign of airstrikes to "seriously diminish" Iraqi military capability if it does not submit to unfettered UN arms inspections. (NYT, WP, WT 2/18)

Israeli Infrastructures M Ariel Sharon discusses further redeployment (FRD) proposals with Arafat advisers Ahmad Qurai`, Mahmud Abbas. (YA 2/18 in WNC 2/21; IGPO 2/19; MA 2/24 in WNC 2/26; PR 3/6) (see 2/16)

In Bethlehem, 100s of Palestinians hold pro-Iraq, anti-U.S. march. PA police prevent them fr. reaching an IDF roadblock. (WP 2/18)

Settlers at Kiryat Arba nr. Hebron stone Palestinian car passing by the settlement, injuring the driver. (PR 2/27)

Nr. Me'a Sherim settlement in the West Bank, a Palestinian youth is stabbed, lightly wounded by unidentified assailant. (PR 2/27)

Lebanese civilian is injured during IDF shelling of Hizballah positions. (RL 2/17 in WNC 2/21; al-Safir 2/20 in WNC 2/24)

In Amman, a gunman fires at Rahim Tahir Ahmad al-Sudani, the Iraqi embassy's trade adviser, hitting his car but leaving him unhurt. At least 9 Iraqis are arrested in the attack, but the motive is unclear. (INA, JTV, RJ 1/3 in WNC 1/6; JT 1/13 in WNC 1/14; NYT 1/19)

In Amman, Crown Prince Hassan, Arafat adviser Abbas end 2 days of talks on Israeli Infrastructures M Sharon's FRD plan, agree to reject it. (SA 1/6 in WNC 1/7; MENA 1/7 in WNC 1/10)

Israeli cabinet agrees in principle to carry out a single FRD, insists that Netanyahu specify the areas Israel will retain under a final settlement before details of FRD can be discussed, forms ministerial team (comprising PM Netanyahu, FM Levy, DM Mordechai, Trade M Natan Sharansky, and Infrastructures M Ariel Sharon) to draw up FRD plans, lists security prerequisites that the PA would have to fulfill. (CSM, MM, NYT, WP, WT 12/1; MA, YA 12/1, YA 12/2 in WNC 12/9; NYT 12/3; MEI 12/5; WT 12/7)

Moshe Leon, Netanyahu's economic adviser, is approved as the new dir. gen. of the PM's Office, replacing Lieberman, who is appointed by the pres. of Moldova as Moldova's honorary consul in Israel, with full diplomatic status. (Globes [Internet] 11/30 in WNC 12/9; ITV 12/8, YA 12/9 in WNC 12/17) (see 11/23)

In Cairo, PA negotiators brief Egypt's Pres. Mubarak on 11/3-6 Washington talks with Israel. Citing the talks' failure, Egypt announces that despite U.S. pressure, it will boycott the Doha economic summit. (MENA, RE 11/11 in WNC 11/12; NYT, WP, WT 11/12; WJW 11/13)

High-level EU delegation leaves Egypt for Jordan after visit of several hrs. (JTV, MENA 11/11 in WNC 11/12; RJ 11/12 in WNC 11/14)

At the Likud convention, Netanyahu backs away fr. call to abolish party primary elections in the face of pressue fr. party mbrs. (including fmr. Science M Benjamin Begin, fmr. Finance M Dan Meridor, Tel Aviv Mayor Roni Milo, DM Mordechai, Infrastructures M Sharon, Jerusalem Mayor Olmert) strong enough to split party, force new elections. (IDF Radio 11/11 in WNC 11/12; ITV, MA 11/12 in WNC 11/14) (see 11/9)

Israel's 1st El Al flight lands at Jordan's Aqaba airport. (HA, JT 11/11; al-Dustur 11/11 in WNC 11/12; JT 11/12 in WNC 11/14) (see 8/31)

Palestinian boy is left brain-dead when IDF opens fire with rubber bullets on crowd protesting reopening of the newly fortified Rachel's Tomb, a Jewish shrine in an Israeli-controlled salient in Bethlehem. (NYT 11/12, 11/14)

Jordan holds parliamentary elections. Progovernment independents win 62 of 80 seats. 9 oppositon parties boycott, lowering voter turnout to just over 50%, but 8 Islamists win seats as independents (reducing Islamist parliamentarians by half). 10 seats are won by leftist, nationalist opposition and conservatives. 17 women run for seats (in comparison to 12 in 1989, 3 in 1993), but none win. New parliament is considered weak, centrist, with high tribal affiliation. (MM, WP 11/4; JTV, RJ 11/4, RJ 11/5 in WNC 11/6; WP 11/5; NYT 11/6; JT 11/6 in WNC 11/8)

Israeli court rules against Infrastructures M Sharon, who sued author Uzi Benziman for libel in 1991 for writing that as DM, Sharon had deceived PM Menachem Begin during the 1982 war in Lebanon. Court states evidence shows that Sharon persued a personal adgenda in 1982, failed to inform the PM of his true intentions. (MM 11/4-6)

PM Netanyahu, DM Mordechai, Infrastructures M Sharon secretly fly to Amman to discuss attack on Hamas's Mishal. King Hussein refuses to meet them, sends Crown Prince Hassan instead. (NYT 10/10) (see 9/25)

U.S. Secy. of State Albright, Israeli FM Levy, Arafat adviser Abbas meet on the sidelines of the UNGA session in New York. (NYT, WP, WT 9/29; MEI 10/10)

Egyptian pres. Mubarak receives Israeli pres. Weizman in Alexandria. (MENA 9/28 in WNC 9/30; MM 9/29; JP 10/11)

PM Netanyahu tells his cabinet that he has spotted the "first, preliminary steps" by the PA to crack down on Islamists; releases $17 m. of tax money withheld fr. the PA since the 7/30, 9/4 bombings; allows 8,000 more Palestinian workers into Israel. (CSM, NYT, WT 9/29)

At a Labor convention, party leader Ehud Barak asks forgiveness fr. Sephardic Jews for the way the party treated them in the early years of statehood. (NYT 9/30; JP 10/4; MM 10/22)

IDF demolishes 53 dwellings of 70 Jahalin bedouin families, a school nr. Azariyya in Jeruslem. (PHRIC 10/21) (see 8/19)

The 3 companies fr. France, Malaysia, Russia sign $2 b. deal to explore for  gas in Iran, challenging for the 1st time a 1996 law sponsored by Sens. Alfonse D'Amato (R-NY), Edward Kennedy (D-MA) requiring the U.S. to impose sanctions on any company that violates a 1996 law against investing more than $40 m. in Iran. (NYT 9/29; NYT, WP, WT 9/30; NYT 10/1; MEI 10/10) (see 7/26)

In Tehran, Iran, Jordan discuss expanding bilateral relations in trade, tourism, transportation. (RJ 9/28 in WNC 9/30; JT 10/1 in WNC 10/2)

500,000 Israeli workers honor an 8-hr. strike called by Histadrut to protest the Likud government's refusal to honor a Labor-initiated pension plan. (WT 9/28, 9/29)

With PM Netanyahu's knowledge, Israeli Infrastructure M Ariel Sharon secretly holds mtg. with Arafat dep. Abbas to discuss each side's position on final status negotiations. FM Levy, DM Mordechai are not told of the mtg. (NYT, WT 6/29; MM 6/30; YA 6/30 in WNC 7/2; MM 7/1, 7/2; CSM 7/3; PR 7/4; JP 7/5; SA 7/8 in WNC 7/9; MEI 7/11)

In Hebron, IDF shoots, wounds 8 Palestinian demonstrators. (MM 6/16)

Palestinian Hakam Subhi Qamhawi dies in the PA General Intelligence interrogation center in Jericho. General Intelligence says he died of a heart attack. (LAW 6/17)

In Amman, the prosecution rests in the Daqamsa case. (JT 6/17 in WNC 6/19; JT 7/6 in WNC 7/8) (see 5/27)

In s. Lebanon, a Lebanese civilian is wounded when a bomb explodes nr. his truck. In a separate incident, 1 IDF soldier is killed, 3 are wounded when their tank hits a Hizballah land mine. (MM 6/16; VOL 6/16 in WNC 6/17)

Regarding the assertion concerning Mega (see 5/7), an unnamed senior U.S. official confirms that special envoy Ross read Netanyahu the U.S. letter of assurances to the PA but did not give him a copy to keep. (WP 5/8; CSM 5/9)

In Geneva, the UN Comm. Against Torture summons Israel for a 3-day extraordinary hearing to face accusations that its practices against Palestinian prisoners violate international conventions. (NYT, WT 5/8; IGPO 5/8 in WNC 5/13; NYT, WP 5/10)

Austrian FM Wolfgang Schuessel arrives in Israel on 1st leg of a regional tour to acquaint himself with the issues of the peace process in advance of his assumption of the EU presidency in 1998; meets with FM Levy, Labor mbr. Ehud Barak. (Neue Kronen Zeitung [Vienna] 5/8 in WNC 5/12)

Israeli inner cabinet holds mtg. on evacuation of settlers nr. Nablus 5/6. Ms Rafael Eitan, Zevulun Hammer, Ariel Sharon accuse PM Netanyahu of making a gesture to the PA, prompting Netanyahu to apologize for the evacuation. (IDF Radio 5/7 in WNC 5/8)

Jordan, Tunisia sign agmt. to form comm. to study the creation of a common free trade zone; discuss joint tourism, investment projects. (JT 5/7 in WNC 5/8)

In Beirut, Iranian FM Velayati meets PM Hariri. Velayati then goes to Damascus to discuss Israeli-Turkish military cooperation with Pres. Asad, FM Shara`; then heads to Yemen. (IRNA, RMC, VOL 5/7 in WNC 5/8; SATN 5/7, IRNA, RMC 5/8 in WNC 5/9; MM 5/8) (see 5/3)

ILMG meets to discuss Israeli complaint regarding 5/5 Hizballah attack, Lebanese complaint regarding 5/6 bombing. (RL 5/7 in WNC 5/8; RL 5/7, 5/8 in WNC 5/9)

At the weekly PA Executive Authority (EA), PLO Exec. Comm. meeting, the executive urges Palestinians to reclaim confiscated land in the West Bank, Gaza; advocates "popular confrontation" every time "Israeli bulldozers appear on Palestinian land"; vows to support such Palestinian resistance politically and financially. (MEI 12/6) (see 11/18)

Israeli Infrastructure M Ariel Sharon draws up plans for construction of 900 housing units for settlers on the Golan Heights as the 1st stage in a program to add 2,500 new residences over the next 3 yrs. Under this "Golan 2000" plan (as yet unapproved by the government), the buildings would be considered extensions of existing settlements, though they would be at a distance fr. built-up areas. The settler population would increase fr. 16,000 to 25,000; currently, 18,000 Druze live on the Golan. (MM 11/22; YA 11/22 in WNC 11/25; NYT, WP 11/23; ITV 11/24 in WNC 11/26; MM 11/25; WJW 11/28; PR 11/29; JP 11/30; MEI 12/6)

PA says it will give out up to 15 video cameras to Palestinians living nr. Israeli checkpoints so they can record any abuses of Palestinians by Israeli border police. (WP 11/23) (see 11/19)

Palestinian home in Hebron is fire bombed, injuring 5 Palestinians, 1 critically. PA police suspect settlers. (MEI 11/8)

Israeli Infrastructure M Sharon unveils plans to build 2 new settlements that would double the number of Jewish settlers in the West Bank. (ITV 11/3 in WNC 11/5; MM 11/4; CSM, MM, WP, WT 11/5; PR 11/8; WP 11/19)

In s. Lebanon, Hizballah detonates roadside bomb and SLA convoy passes, killing 1 SLA mbr. In response, IDF shells highlands n. of Israeli occupied zone, wounding 1 civilian. Israel admits responsibility for mistakenly firing at a village. (RL, al-Ra'i 11/3 in WNC 11/5; WP 11/4; JP 11/16)

1st Netanyahu, Arafat mtg. is held at Erez. Netanyahu says he is prepared to negotiate a final peace, improve Palestinian economic conditions, allow 50,000 Palestinian workers into Israel (see 8/5). (MM 9/4; CSM, MM, WP, WT 9/5; VOA, YA 9/5 in WNC 9/6; al-Quds al-Arabi 9/5, RE 9/6 in WNC 9/9; MEI, MM, PR 9/6; JT 9/8 in WNC 9/10; MM 9/9, 9/10; PR 9/13; JP 9/14; MEI 9/20)

Arafat rejects new Hebron redeployment plan presented to the PA by Israeli Infrastructure M Sharon. The plan calls for expanding the area to be transferred to full PA control, decreasing the number of Palestinians left under Israeli control fr. 17,000 to 3,000; linking the Jewish enclave to the Tomb of the Patriarchs/ al-Ibrahimi mosque, Kiryat Arba settlement; erecting a wall btwn. the Arab, Jewish sections; permitting PA to increase police presence in Hebron within 6 mos. if security in the city is maintained. (YA 9/5 in WNC 9/6) (see 9/3)

Following Netanyahu-Arafat mtg., YESHA settlers' council holds emergency mtg.; announces it will no longer wait for permission fr. Netanyahu to undertake new housing construction in the West Bank, Gaza. (WP 9/6)

LAWE says there are currently some 320 Palestinian administrative detainees in Israeli prisons, 2/3 of whom were arrested after the Oslo II agmt. was signed 9/28/95. 1/4 are residents of area A, which is fully under PA control. (LAWE 9/4)

Iraqi air force twice challenge expanded no-fly zone in s. Iraq. U.S. responds by firing on a radar station. Pres. Clinton hints that there would be no further action against Iraq unless the U.S. senses a fresh provocation. (MM 9/4; CSM, WP, WT 9/5; JT 9/5 in WNC 9/6) (see 9/3)

In advance of the last 2 rounds of Lebanese elections (9/8, 9/15), Syria brokers election coalition agmt. btwn. Amal, Hizballah meant to increase the chances of success for Islamist candidates and undermine the alliance btwn. current speaker Birri, current PM Hariri. Syria does not want to excessively reduce the power of the Islamists, who experienced significant losses in the 8/18, 8/25, 9/1 rounds of voting. (MM 9/5; al-Nahar 9/13 in WNC 9/17; MEI 9/20)

EA, PLO Exec. Comm. mtg. is held in Ramallah. (VOP 7/6 in FBIS 7/8)

UNRWA opens new headquarters in Gaza. Headquarters Coordinator April Glaspie, Arafat sign agmt. regulating UNRWA's legal relationship with the PA. (UNRWA press release 8/20)

PM Netanyahu presents Sharon's portfolio to the cabinet for approval. Dep. Construction M Meir Porush, fr. UTJ, refuses to relinquish 2 agencies under his control--the Public Works Dept. ($200-m. budget) and the Rural Construction Administration ($40-m. budget for construction of kibbutzim, small settlements)--forcing a delay. (WT 7/6; MM, NYT 7/8)

In Jerusalem, the new Knesset is sworn in. Netanyahu signs final coalition agmts. (with UTJ [4 seats], Yisrael BaAliya [7 seats]) needed to secure his coalition government. Debate with Sharon over cabinet position delays presentation of the new government until 6/18; Gesher's David Levy threatens to withdraw fr. the coalition (see 3/12) if Sharon is not given an adequate portfolio. (MM 6/17; QY 6/17 in FBIS 6/17; MM, NYT, WP, WT 6/18; HA 6/18 in FBIS 6/21; WP 6/19; WJW 6/20) (see 6/16)

1-day EU-Mediterranean business conference convenes in Rome. (European Report 6/15)