22 / 14824 Results
  • July 29, 2012

    On the 2d day of his trip to Israel, Republican presidential candidate Romney prays at the Western Wall and gives a public address to 300 select supporters in Jerusalem (calling Jerusalem the...

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  • March 24, 2010

    Netanyahu clears his schedule to hold additional talks with U.S. admin. officials aimed at drafting a “blueprint” covering issues (including construction in Jerusalem) that need to be resolved...

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  • July 28, 2009

    The IDF makes a brief incursion into Gaza e. of Gaza City to level land nr. the border fence. The UN reports that 9 Palestinians were killed and 16 injured in tunnel collapses in the previous wk....

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  • June 17, 2009

    In the West Bank, the IDF demolishes 3 Bedouin tents and 15 animal pens in the al-Hilwa area of the n. Jordan Valley, declaring it a closed military zone and ordering residents to leave the area;...

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  • June 15, 2007

    Firmly in control of Gaza, Hamas declares amnesty for Fatah leaders, except National Security Advisor (NSA) Dahlan, with the aim of quelling violence, releasing several of the 10 senior Fatah...

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  • January 22, 2004

    The IDF pulls out of Rafah after 2 days, having found no smugglers’ tunnels; conducts arrest raids, fires on stone-throwing Palestinians, blows up a 5-story apartment building in Nablus;...

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  • August 17, 2001

    The IDF says it averted a major bombing in Haifa, arresting 2 Islamic Jihad mbrs. The IDF also enters Brazil camp to demolish at least 1 house and fires on residents with live ammunition, injuring...

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  • May 16, 2001

    Israeli-Palestinian clashes, now in their 8th mo., continue, with Israel Defense Force (IDF) increasingly striking Palestinian targets and entering areas controlled by the Palestinian Authority (...

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  • September 21, 2000

    Separately, PA, Israeli officials say talks are on hold while the U.S. decides if it will offer bridging proposals. U.S. NSA Berger says the U.S. is also weighing the possibility of holding...

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  • September 13, 2000

    PA negotiators Erakat, Dahlan leave for New York for 2-days of consultations with the U.S. peace team and Israeli negotiators Ben-Ami, Sher. (AYM 9/14 in WNC 9/18)

    In Washington, Ben-Ami...

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  • August 11, 1999

    The 2-wk. period for the PA to consider Barak's proposals for a delay in Wye implementation ends. Erakat, Sher meet to discuss the FRD timetable, but reach no agmt. (MM 8/11, 8/12; al-Quds...

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  • June 28, 1999

    Egyptian pres. Mubarak arrives in Washington on his 1st visit to the U.S. in 2 yrs.; holds separate mtgs. with National Security Adviser (NSA) Sandy Berger, Defense Secy. William Cohen, Commerce...

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  • April 27, 1999

    In Gaza, the PLO Central Council (PCC) opens debate on statehood declaration, with 96 of 124 mbrs. attending. Arafat opens the mtg. by affirming Palestinians' right to independence,...

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  • March 28, 1999

    New Yorker columnist Seymour Hersh reports that in 11/97, Russian PM Yevgeny Primakov allegedly accepted an $800,000 bribe fr. Iraqi pres. Saddam Hussein in return for Russian assistance...

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  • December 18, 1998

    On the 3d day of its attack on Iraq, the U.S. can confirm that only 18 of its 89 targets have been severely damaged or destroyed, despite having fired more laser-guided missiles in 2 days than...

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  • February 18, 1998

    In Tel Aviv, Israel, Jordan hold talks on water, Jordan Valley development. (RJ 2/19 in WNC 2/24; Globes [Internet] 2/22 in WNC 2/26; JP 2/28)

    Palestine-...

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  • May 8, 1997

    U.S. special envoy Ross meets with Arafat in Gaza, then meets with PM Netanyahu, Pres. Weizman, FM Levy. (WJW 5/8; ITV, QY 5/8 in WNC 5/9; MM, WP 5/9; MEI, PR 5/16; JP 5/17)

    Israel's PM...

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  • May 6, 1997

    FBI begins investigating whether a "senior U.S. government official" has been passing highly sensitive information to Israel. U.S. officials say that in 1/97, the National Security Agency...

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  • December 5, 1996

    At weekly PC session, mbrs. threaten the executive with a no-confidence vote if it does not take firm action on behalf of prisoners, says the leadership is "not dealing seriously" with the...

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  • October 11, 1996

    Israeli Justice M David Liba'i retires fr. his post, is replaced by Eitan Kabal. (QY 10/11 in IL 10/11)

    IDF shells village in s. Lebanon wounding 12 civilians in what Israel claims is a...

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  • December 6, 1993

    Secy. of State Christopher meets PLO Chmn. Arafat at U.S. embassy in Amman. At press conference after 2-hr. mtg., Arafat appeals for U.S. pressure on Israel to meet 12/13 deadline for withdrawal...

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  • May 10, 1983

    Military Action:

    Syria fires at unmanned Israeli reconnaissance aircraft, shells IDF positions in Bekaa Valley; IDF patrol attacked in Chouf where cease-fire continues; US State Dept....

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On the 2d day of his trip to Israel, Republican presidential candidate Romney prays at the Western Wall and gives a public address to 300 select supporters in Jerusalem (calling Jerusalem the capital of Israel). He vows to support Israel’s right to defend itself and calls for Israel and the U.S. to use ‘‘any and all means’’ to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. He does not repeat the comment his foreign policy aide, Dan Senor, made en route to Israel that Romney would ‘‘respect’’ an Israeli decision to strike Iran unilaterally, nor does he mention the Palestinians or the peace process. Romney meets with his former business colleague PM Netanyahu, who makes kind remarks but is seen (e.g., WP 7/30) as being careful not to take sides in the election. He also meets with Israeli pres. Peres and PA PM Salam Fayyad; the Romney camp cancels at the last minute a planned meeting with Labor party officials. In an interview with CNN later in the day, Romney says that the U.S., in consultation with Israel, should move its embassy to Jerusalem. In response, White House spokesman Josh Earnest says: ‘‘The view of this administration is the capital should be determined in final status negotiations between the parties. That’s the position held by the previous administrations, both Democratic and Republican.’’ (NYT, WP, WT 7/30; WP 7/31; WJW 8/2)

Timed with Romney’s visit to Israel, the Obama admin. leaks a story to the Israeli daily Ha’Aretz that NSA Donilon briefed an Israeli official (some say PM Netanyahu, though Israel explicitly denies this) over dinner in Israel earlier in 7/2012 on ‘‘U.S. contingency plans for any attack on Iran,’’ emphasizing that the U.S. is making serious preparations for a military strike if such action is deemed necessary. A Netanyahu spokesman says Donilon did not share any operational plans. Donilon’s office says it does not comment on private meetings. (WT 7/30)

In Tunis en route to Israel, U.S. defense secy. Leon Panetta says Israel and the U.S. are united in support of strong sanctions against Iran. (NYT, WP 7/30)

Israeli naval vessels fire on Palestinian fishing boats off the n. Gaza coast, forcing them to return to shore. In the West Bank, the IDF patrols in 2 villages nr. Ramallah and 1 nr. Jenin in the morning; patrols in 2 villages nr. Jenin and Ramallah in the evening. Jewish settlers block roads and stone Palestinian cars nr. the evacuated settlement of Homesh nr. Jenin. (PCHR 8/2; OCHA 8/3)

Netanyahu clears his schedule to hold additional talks with U.S. admin. officials aimed at drafting a “blueprint” covering issues (including construction in Jerusalem) that need to be resolved before proximity talks can go forward. Netanyahu would take the plan to his government, while Mitchell would take it to the Palestinians and Arab leaders. A final draft of the blueprint is not agreed to, however. (NYT, WP 3/25)

Obama sits in on a National Security Agency brainstorming session weighing the pros and cons of the U.S. offering its own peace proposal to break the Israeli-Palestinian impasse. (NYT, WP 4/8)

IDF troops on the n. Gaza border make a brief incursion 800 m across the border to disperse Palestinians scavenging for construction materials from destroyed buildings, arresting 5. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Hebron. (PCHR 3/25; OCHA, PCHR 4/1)

The IDF makes a brief incursion into Gaza e. of Gaza City to level land nr. the border fence. The UN reports that 9 Palestinians were killed and 16 injured in tunnel collapses in the previous wk. In the West Bank, the IDF conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches nr. Tulkarm. Jewish settlers evicted fr. Inbalim on 7/27 set up 3 new mobile homes in Givat Egoz outpost nr. Talmon settlement, also nr. Ramallah. An Israeli court reverses its 7/27 temporary injunction on construction at the Farhan-Hijazi properties in Shaykh Jarrah, ruling that Jewish settlers may keep building and living on the site until the next court session to discuss the case on 9/23/09. Meanwhile, Israeli police raid 2 other Palestinian homes in Shaykh Jarrah (the Ghawi and Hanun properties) where ownership is contested by Jewish groups, ordering residents to vacate the homes by 8/10/09 or face expulsion; settlers attempt to occupy the Hanun home but are fended off by the family; both families immediately file an appeal to the Israeli High Court. Timed with Mitchell’s visit (see 7/26), Jewish settlers, as a protest message to Obama, set up 11 new unauthorized settlement outposts, symbolizing the 11 settlements established by Zionists in the Negev in 1946 in defiance of British prohibition. The settlers hold a press conference inaugurating the new outposts in Neria settlement, established in 1991 to protest a visit by Secy. of State James Baker who was then pressuring Israel to halt settlement construction. (NYT 7/29; OCHA, PCHR 7/30; OCHA 8/18)

U.S. NSA Jones and his chief Middle East adviser Dennis Ross begin a 3-day trip to Israel, with talks focused on Iran. (WP 7/27; NYT 7/29)

In the West Bank, the IDF demolishes 3 Bedouin tents and 15 animal pens in the al-Hilwa area of the n. Jordan Valley, declaring it a closed military zone and ordering residents to leave the area; conducts synchronized late-night house searches in 3 villages s. and w. of Jenin, making no arrests; conducts late-night arrest raids, house searches in Nablus, firing a stun grenade into a Palestinian home, causing a fire that leaves significant damage. (OCHA, PCHR 6/18; OCHA, PCHR 6/25)

Israeli FM Avigdor Lieberman begins his first official visit to the U.S., holding extremely tense talks with Secy. of State Hillary Clinton and national security adviser (NSA) Gen. James Jones regarding U.S. demands for a complete settlement freeze. (Financial Times 6/18) 

Firmly in control of Gaza, Hamas declares amnesty for Fatah leaders, except National Security Advisor (NSA) Dahlan, with the aim of quelling violence, releasing several of the 10 senior Fatah political security officials captured earlier in the day; orders all mbrs. of the PA security forces in Gaza to continue to report for duty to provide law and order, albeit under Hamas cmdrs. Hamas also calls for the immediate release of kidnapped BBC correspondent Johnston. With fighting suspended, Palestinian crowds loot abandoned Fatah buildings, targeting in particular Dahlan’s home and Abbas’s presidential compound; Hamas mbrs. surround and prevent looting at Abbas’s Gaza residence. Some violence persists, with a Fatah mbr. thrown to his death from a high building by the family of a man he killed earlier; a Fatah security official commits suicide after learning that he was on a Hamas wanted list. Meanwhile, Egypt reinforces its forces on the border with Gaza with riot police, APCs, and water cannons, fearing that Palestinians will attempt to flee Gaza for Egypt en masse at the first opportunity. Israel temporarily opens the Erez crossing to allow Fatah officials to escape Gaza for Ramallah. In the West Bank, Abbas names Finance M Salam al-Fayyad as his new PM, charging him with forming a government; issues a presidential decree suspending articles of the Basic Law (the interim Palestinian constitution) requiring the new government to receive a vote of confidence from the PC (currently controlled by the Hamas-affiliated Change and Reform party). Fatah-Hamas tensions remain high in the West Bank, where heavily armed Fatah mbrs. patrol in Ramallah in a show of force; Fatah mbrs. ransack Change and Reform offices, Hamas-run charity organizations in several cities; kidnap at least 9 Hamas mbrs. AMB mbrs. fatally shoot a Hamas mbr. in Nablus. Inside Israel, the Israel Prisons Service separates Fatah, Hamas detainees to prevent rioting. Meanwhile, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches, patrols in villages around Jenin, firing on residential areas, causing no injuries. In Gaza, the IDF conducts arrest raids, house searches in Dayr al-Balah; fires rubber-coated steel bullets, percussion grenades, tear gas at Palestinian, Israeli, international activists attending weekly nonviolent demonstrations against the separation wall in Bil‘in, injuring 2. (AP, HA, WP, QA 6/15; NYT, WP, WT 6/16; Interfax 6/16 in WNC 6/17; PCHR 6/21; NYT 7/9)

The IDF pulls out of Rafah after 2 days, having found no smugglers’ tunnels; conducts arrest raids, fires on stone-throwing Palestinians, blows up a 5-story apartment building in Nablus; demolishes 2 buildings under construction nr. Tulkarm; conducts arrest raids nr. Khan Yunis. The IDF also fires on a group of Palestinian boys that strays too close to the Gaza border fence while hunting for birds, killing an 11-yr.-old Palestinian, wounding 2 (ages 12, 16); IDF officials say they cannot confirm the death, but state that soldiers do not issue a warning call or fire warning shots at Palestinians approaching the fence and that “terrorists sometimes [have] dispatched children to test Israeli defenses.” (HA 1/22; VOP 1/22 in WNC 1/24; HA, NYT 1/23; PR 1/28; LAW, PCHR 1/29)

Sharon’s chief of staff Weisglass meets with NSA Rice in Washington for further discussions on Sharon’s unilateral disengagement plan. (HA, MM 1/22; WP 1/23; JTA 1/26; HA 1/29)

The IDF says it averted a major bombing in Haifa, arresting 2 Islamic Jihad mbrs. The IDF also enters Brazil camp to demolish at least 1 house and fires on residents with live ammunition, injuring 10; shells, briefly enters Khan Yunis, exchange gunfire with Palestinians, leaving 1 Palestinian dead; tightens the closures on Bethlehem, Qalqilya (cutting phone lines to the town), Ramallah. Palestinians throw 2 hand grenades at an IDF post nr. Jinin, causing no damage. (HP 8/17; NYT, WT 8/18; AP, HP, WT 8/19; LAW 8/22)

An Egyptian delegation led by Osama Baz, senior adviser to Egyptian pres. Husni Mubarak, holds its 4th and last day of mtgs. with U.S. officials, including Secy. of State Colin Powell, National Security Adviser (NSA) Condoleeza Rice. Baz says the sides exchanged ideas on "certain arrangements" for enabling implementation of the Mitchell Comm. recommendations but would not discuss details until they had studied each other's proposals. (United Press International 8/17; MENA 8/27, MENA, al-Quds 8/18, MENA 8/19 in WNC 8/20; NYT, WP 8/18; WP 8/19; al-Quds 8/19, MENA 8/20 in WNC 8/21; HA 8/21; MM 8/22; al-Musawwar 8/24 in WNC 8/27)

 

Israeli-Palestinian clashes, now in their 8th mo., continue, with Israel Defense Force (IDF) increasingly striking Palestinian targets and entering areas controlled by the Palestinian Authority (PA) without provocation so as to "keep them guessing and [have] them spend more time defending themselves" and with Palestinians stepping up their sniping at soldiers and settlers and firing of mortars (especially in Gaza). To date, around 511 Palestinians, 82 Israelis have been killed. Today, 1 Palestinian is shot dead by IDF troops. The IDF also shells the PA Preventive Security Force (PSF) offices in Jabaliyya, Jinin; directs shells, heavy machine gun fire at residential areas of Khan Yunis; sends tanks, bulldozers into 2 PA-controlled areas in Gaza, occupying a multistory building in al-Qarara nr. Gush Katif settlement and a factory in Dayr al-Balah. IDF soldiers at a checkpoint on the Nablus-Ramallah road halt a Red Crescent ambulance en route to pick up a critically ill patient, severely beat 3 medics, empty the ambulance and damage supplies; the harassment ends when the International Comm. of the Red Cross (ICRC) intervenes. (AFP [Internet], HP 5/16; MM, NYT, PCHR, WP, WT 5/17; LAW, WT 5/18)

The IDF concedes that the 5/14 attack on a PSF post in Beitunia that left 5 PSF officers dead was a "blunder" and that the area was quiet when soldiers attacked. (WP 5/17; AN, HJ 5/17 in WNC 5/18, 5/21; HA, NYT 5/18)

PA Information M Yasir `Abid Rabbuh appeals to Congress to support the recommendations of the Mitchell Comm., the U.S.-led international inquiry into the causes of the al-Aqsa intifada headed by fmr. U.S. sen. George Mitchell. The comm.'s preliminary report (submitted to Israel and the PA on 5/1) suggests a two-pronged approach to restoring calm based on Israel halting all settlement construction, the PA making a 100% effort to halt violence. The comm.'s final report is expected in 1 wk. The State Dept. says Secy. of State Colin Powell is considering meeting with Sharon, Arafat on the sidelines of his trip to Africa, Europe 5/22+n30. (WT 5/18)

In Washington, U.S. Pres. George W. Bush holds a strategy session on the Middle East with his top foreign policy advisers, including Secy. of State Powell, Secy. of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, National Security Adviser (NSA) Condoleeza Rice. Powell advocates using the recommendations of the Mitchell Comm. and the Jordanian-Egyptian initiative as the base for a cease-fire plan. Both plans call for a full freeze on settlement construction, which admin. officials claim they cannot directly demand from Israeli PM Ariel Sharon. (MM 5/16; MM, NYT 5/17)

Separately, PA, Israeli officials say talks are on hold while the U.S. decides if it will offer bridging proposals. U.S. NSA Berger says the U.S. is also weighing the possibility of holding another round of summit talks or sending Secy. of State Albright to the region. (MM 9/21; MM, WP, WT 9/22)

The IDF confirms that the Israeli DMin. has approved a 250-acre expansion of the West Bank settlement of Alfe Menashe; work has already begun. (AP 9/21)

PA negotiators Erakat, Dahlan leave for New York for 2-days of consultations with the U.S. peace team and Israeli negotiators Ben-Ami, Sher. (AYM 9/14 in WNC 9/18)

In Washington, Ben-Ami briefs U.S. National Security Adviser (NSA) Sandy Berger, the Senate minority and majority leaders, the House International Relations Comm. on the latest developments in the PA-Israeli peace process; calls for upgrading U.S.-Israeli strategic ties, which he stresses should not be conditional on progress on talks with the PA. (MM, WT 9/13; AYM 9/13, Globes 9/14 in WNC 9/18; MM, WP 9/14; MM 9/15, 9/25)

In Gaza, a dispute btwn. rival Fatah factions erupts into a demonstrations, stone-throwing. (NYT 9/14; SA 9/14 in WNC 9/18; SA 9/17 in WNC 9/26)

Nr. Netzarim settlement in Gaza, IDF soldiers, PA police disperse Palestinians throwing stones at passing settler vehicles. No one is injured; 1 car is damaged. (VOI 9/13 in WNC 9/18)

The 2-wk. period for the PA to consider Barak's proposals for a delay in Wye implementation ends. Erakat, Sher meet to discuss the FRD timetable, but reach no agmt. (MM 8/11, 8/12; al-Quds 8/12 in WNC 8/13)

Israeli Justice M Beilin travels to Washington to deliver a message fr. Barak to Secy. of State Albright, also meets with NSA Berger, Atty. Gen. Janet Reno. Albright tells Beilin that the U.S. believes that Israel should carry out the Wye FRD as agreed but would accept "modest adjustments" in the timetable if the PA approved. (MM 8/11; Xinhua 8/12 in WNC 8/13; MM 8/13)

Israeli PM Barak phones Pres. Clinton to discuss ways to make Secy. of State Albright's upcoming tour of the Middle East "productive." (MM 8/11; WT 8/12)

Israel's Office of the Judge Advocate General issues a legal opinion stating that 30 of the 42 settlement enclaves established since the Wye agmt. was signed in 10/98 are illegal. (MM 8/12)

Israel's Interior Min. demolishes 2 Palestinian homes in the Wallaja neighborhood of Jerusalem, sparking clash btwn. Israeli police, Palestinians in which 1 policeman is injured. (JP [Internet] 8/12)

Egyptian pres. Mubarak arrives in Washington on his 1st visit to the U.S. in 2 yrs.; holds separate mtgs. with National Security Adviser (NSA) Sandy Berger, Defense Secy. William Cohen, Commerce Secy. Daley, World Bank pres. Wolfensohn, a delegation of American Jewish leaders. Most talks focus on the peace process. (MM 6/28; WT 6/29; WJW 7/1; MEI 7/16)

Acting Likud head Sharon walks out of coalition talks with PM-elect Barak, saying Barak refused to commit himself to continue aggressive settlement construction, particularly in disputed areas of Jerusalem, or to rule out a broad withdrawal fr. the Golan Heights. (CSM, MM, NYT, WP, WT 6/29; al-Quds 7/29 in WNC 7/2)

UNSC begins closed-door debates on a new weapons inspection regime for Iraq. (WP 6/29)

In Gaza, the PLO Central Council (PCC) opens debate on statehood declaration, with 96 of 124 mbrs. attending. Arafat opens the mtg. by affirming Palestinians' right to independence, but recommending against declaring a state on 5/4. Hamas sends a 4 mbr. observer group led by Shaykh Ahmad Yasin, marking 1st time it has participated in a PLO mtg.; the move is criticized by Hamas political leaders in Jordan. Islamic Jihad, Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine boycott. (MM 4/27; AFP, IDF Radio, JT 4/27 in WNC 4/28; MM, NYT, WP, WT 4/28; IDF Radio, MBC 4/28 in WNC 4/29; al-Ayyam 4/28, 4/29 in WNC 5/3; PR 4/30; MEI 5/7; al-Istiqlal 5/7 in WNC 5/17; CSM 5/17)

In Nablus, 1,000 Fatah mbrs. march in support of a statehood declaration on 5/4. (WT 4/28)

A Palestinian arrested by Israeli police on burglary charges on 4/27 is admitted to a Tel Aviv hospital having been beaten so severely that one of his kidneys stopped functioning. (Reuters [Internet] 5/6)

Without explanation, the GIS orders the Hamas weekly newspaper al-Risala closed "until further notice." Under pressure fr. unnamed PA officials, the paper is allowed to reopen several hrs. later. (AFP 4/27 in WNC 4/28; al-Hayat al-Jadida 4/29 in WNC 5/3; PR 4/30)

In Geneva, the UN Human Rights Commission passes (52-1) a resolution reaffirming the Palestinians' right to self-determination, right to return. The U.S. votes against. (ADC press release 4/28; Xinhua 4/28 in WNC 4/29; Prime Minister's Report 4/30) (see 4/23)

Israel claims that the PA has released 3 Hamas prisoners involved in attacks in which Israelis were killed. PA, Hamas deny the story. (IDF Radio 4/27 in WNC 4/28; NYT, WP 4/28; al-Ayyam 4/28 in WNC 4/29; PR 4/30; JP 5/7)

In Washington, Israeli DM Moshe Arens meets with Secy. of State Albright, NSA Berger, Secy. of Defense Cohen for talks on Arrow missile program, Israeli receipt of 60 new F-16D fighters, regional issues. Albright, Berger criticize Israeli settlement policy. (USIS Washington File 4/27; MM 4/28; IDF Radio, MA 5/3 in WNC 5/4; WJW 5/6; JP, MEI 5/7)

Lebanese security personnel arrest an Israeli woman, Mary Vizeman, on suspicion of spying after she is found in Tyre without a passport. Vizeman, who speaks Arabic well, claims that she came fr. Nazareth to visit a friend in Beirut. (VOL 4/28 in WNC 4/29; JP 5/7)

Hizballah attempts to capture 2 IDF/SLA posts in s. Lebanon, wounding 8 IDF soldiers, 3 SLA mbrs. IDF shells Hizballah targets in response, wounding 2 civilians. (VOL 4/27 in WNC 4/28; MM 4/28)

New Yorker columnist Seymour Hersh reports that in 11/97, Russian PM Yevgeny Primakov allegedly accepted an $800,000 bribe fr. Iraqi pres. Saddam Hussein in return for Russian assistance with strategic weapons technology; cites British intelligence reports that a bank transfer was made btwn. Iraq's Dep. PM Tariq Aziz, an account "traceable to Primakov." Russia denies the report; National Security Adviser (NSA) Sandy Berger says that the U.S. has no evidence to support the report. (WP 3/29; NYT 4/1; New Yorker 4/5)

On the 3d day of its attack on Iraq, the U.S. can confirm that only 18 of its 89 targets have been severely damaged or destroyed, despite having fired more laser-guided missiles in 2 days than during the entire 1991 Gulf War. Only U.S. planes stationed in Kuwait, Oman have flown; Saudi Arabia, Turkey have not permitted their bases to be used as staging grounds. (ATL, ITV 12/18 in WNC 12/22; NYT, WP, WT 12/19; MEI 12/25)

For the 2d day, U.S.-British strikes on Iraq prompt street protests across the Middle East. 15,000 Palestinians demonstrate in Nablus, while 1,000s of others protest in Bethlehem, Gaza City, Hebron, Jinin, Ramallah. PA police break up protest in Gaza City only; the PA closes some television, radio stations, news bureaus for reporting on the demonstrations. Syria's grand mufti denounces the U.S.-led operation. Pro-Iraq demonstrations are held in Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Yemen. (MM 12/18; SANA 12/18, al-Ra'i 12/19, JT 12/20 in WNC 12/22; NYT, WT 12/19; MEI 12/25)

Fmr. UNSCOM cheif inspector Scott Ritter claims that UNSCOM head Butler chose sites for inspection that he knew would provoke the Iraqis, then ordered halt to inspections on 12/13 to meet U.S. bombing time table; also says that the White House national security staff helped draft Butler's 12/15 report to ensure it contained sufficiently tough language to justify an attack. Butler denies showing his report to the U.S. in advance of its release, but National Security Adviser (NSA) Sandy Berger admits Butler briefed him personally 12/13. (WT 12/19; WP 12/20; MENA 12/20, al-Akhbar, MA 12/21 in WNC 12/22) (see 12/16)

PA police arrest 4 leading Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) mbrs., 8 journalists at march marking PFLP's 31st anniversary. (NYT, WT 12/19)

Knesset approves additional NIS 20 m. to fund expanding settlements in the West Bank, Golan. (PR 1/1)

In Tel Aviv, Israel, Jordan hold talks on water, Jordan Valley development. (RJ 2/19 in WNC 2/24; Globes [Internet] 2/22 in WNC 2/26; JP 2/28)

Palestine-Israel Steering and Monitoring Comm. (PISMC) cochairs meet at U.S. Amb. to Israel Edward Walker's home. (IGPO 2/18; WJW 2/26; JP 2/28)

Syrian VP `Abd al-Halim Khaddam, FM Faruq al-Shara` leave Cairo after 2 days of talks on peace process, Iraq crisis with Pres. Mubarak, FM `Amr Musa. (MENA, SATN 2/18 in WNC 2/21)

U.S. Secy. of State Madeleine Albright, Defense Secy. William Cohen, National Security Adviser (NSA) Sandy Berger hold 90-min. "town meeting" at Ohio State University on potential strike on Iraq, which is broadcast globally on CNN. Audience heckles official and asks pointed questions on U.S. policy, some saying no military action should be taken, others questioning why goals do not include ousting Iraqi Pres. Saddam Hussein. After mtg., Berger warns Hussein that he should not misinterpret the audience reactions because "Ultimately there's only one man who decides, and he decides not based on the polls . . . but on our national interest." (CSM 2/18; NYT, WP, WT 2/19; WT 2/20; al-Ahram 2/21 in WNC 2/26)

PA Information Min. orders all 34 television, radio stations to obtain licenses fr. the Information Min. as well as Interior Min.; closes 9 West Bank stations that do not have such licenses. (LAW 2/19; NYT, PR 2/20; MEI, PR 2/27) (see 2/16)

U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum forces its director, Walter Reich, to resign. Mishandling of Arafat invitation to visit the museum (see 1/23) is cited as precipitating factor ending troubled tenure. (NYT 2/19)

U.S. special envoy Ross meets with Arafat in Gaza, then meets with PM Netanyahu, Pres. Weizman, FM Levy. (WJW 5/8; ITV, QY 5/8 in WNC 5/9; MM, WP 5/9; MEI, PR 5/16; JP 5/17)

Israel's PM Netanyahu, Jordan's King Hussein meet in Aqaba to discuss water issues, ways of resuming Israeli-PA negotiations. (MM 5/9; QY, RJ, YA 5/9 in WNC 5/12; JTV 5/9, RJ 5/10, JT 5/11, RJ 5/12 in WNC 5/13; NYT 5/10; JP 5/24) (see 5/6, Peace Monitor for details)

U.S. special envoy Ross, EU special envoy Moratinos meet in Israel to discuss the peace process. (IDF Radio 5/8 in WNC 5/9; AFP 5/9 in WNC 5/12; MEI 5/16)

Austrian FM Schuessel holds separate mtgs. with Israel's Netanyahu, PA's Arafat, EU's Moratinos. (Die Presse [Vienna] 5/9 in WNC 5/12)

Israeli cabinet secy. Nave admits that the intelligence transmission intercepted by the NSA in 1/97 was made. An unnamed Israeli intelligence official claims that "Mega" does not refer to a person but to something else. A 3d official claims "Mega" was a mistranslation of "Elga," the term used by Mossad for the CIA. U.S. declines to comment. (WP 5/9; MA, YA 5/9 in WNC 5/13; MM 5/13; YA 5/13 in WNC 5/14) (see 5/6)

FBI begins investigating whether a "senior U.S. government official" has been passing highly sensitive information to Israel. U.S. officials say that in 1/97, the National Security Agency intercepted a transmission btwn. 2 Israeli intelligence officers in Washington and Tel Aviv, discussing a request by Israeli Amb. to the U.S. Eliahu Ben-Elissar to activate a alleged mole code-named Mega to obtain the secret letter of assurances fr. fmr. Secy. of State Christopher to Arafat, which was attached to the Hebron protocol and has never been made public. The transmission suggests that Mega has provide information to Israel in the past. Israel denies spying. (WP 5/7; NYT, WP 5/8; MM 5/8; IDF Radio, ITV, YA 5/8 in WNC 5/9; MM, WP, WT 5/9; SANA 5/12 in WNC 5/13; MEI 5/16; JP 5/17)

Arafat, Israeli pres. Weizman meet in advance of U.S. special envoy Ross's arrival 5/8. (MM, WT 5/6; ITV 5/6 in WNC 5/7; CSM, MM, NYT, WP 5/7; AFP, YA 5/7 in WNC 5/8; WJW 5/8; JP 5/10; MM 5/12)

After Arafat-Weizman mtg., an Israeli-PA-U.S. security mtg. is held to discuss resuming coordination. (MM 5/7; ITV 5/7 in WNC 5/8)

Egyptian pres. Mubarak accepts Iran's invitation to attend the 12/97 OIC mtg. in Tehran but says that Egypt is not considering resuming diplomatic relations with Iran (severed after Egypt signed its peace treaty with Israel in 1979). (WT 5/7)

Iran's FM Velayati arrives in Beirut for mtg. with FM Buwayz. (VOL 5/6 in WNC 5/7; IRNA 5/7 in WNC 5/8)

Israeli police forcibly evacuate 30 Jewish settlers fr. a shack they had set up nr. Nablus in an attempt to expand Yitzhar settlement. (MM, NYT 5/7; IDF Radio 5/7 in WNC 5/8; PR 5/16)

IDF demolishes 2 Palestinian homes in Jerusalem, Ramallah for being constructed without a permit. (LAW 5/6; PR 5/16) (see 5/5)

A bomb explosion in s. Lebanon blamed on Israel kills 2 civilians, injures 2. A 2d bomb at the same site is dismantled. In a separate incident, Israeli planes attack suspected Hizballah targets in the Biqa` Valley, injuring 1 civilian. (RL, VOL 5/6 in WNC 5/7; WP 5/7)

At weekly PC session, mbrs. threaten the executive with a no-confidence vote if it does not take firm action on behalf of prisoners, says the leadership is "not dealing seriously" with the prisoner issue in negotiations with Israel. (PR 12/13)

Responding to PM Netanyahu's 12/4 suggestion, Arafat says that he is willing to take part in a bilateral summit to finalize terms of an Israeli redeployment in Hebron. (WP 12/6)

Jordan, PA hold trade talks in Amman; discuss holding future trilateral economic mtgs. with Israel on provisions for Jordanian exports to/imports fr. the PA self-rule areas. (RJ 12/5 in WNC 12/9)

IDF says that 17 mos. ago, after 5 mos. of preparation, a special forces unit named Egoz began operating against Hizballah in s. Lebanon. To date Egoz mbrs., chosen fr. Golani Brigade recruits, have killed 16 Hizballah fighters or officials. 2 Egoz mbrs. have been killed. (MM 12/5; JP 12/14)

In New York, donors pledge $133 m. to the annual UNRWA pledging conference for regular programs, operations for 1997. (UNRWA press release 12/9; JT 12/13 in WNC 12/16)

Pres. Clinton nominates Amb. to the UN Albright for secy. of state, Sen. William S. Cohen (R-ME) for secy. of defense, National Security Adviser (NSA) Anthony Lake for CIA dir., Dep. NSA Samuel Berger for NSA. (ITV 12/5, MA 12/6 in WNC 12/9; MM, NYT, WP, WP 12/6; VIRI 12/6, RMC 12/7, al-Dustur 12/8 in WNC 12/10; MM 12/9; JT, RL 12/10 in WNC 12/11; WJW 12/12; MEI 12/20; WJW 12/26, 1/2)

PA announces it will make an official inquiry into Fityani's death in PA custody 12/3. (NYT 12/6; PR 12/13)

Israeli Justice M David Liba'i retires fr. his post, is replaced by Eitan Kabal. (QY 10/11 in IL 10/11)

IDF shells village in s. Lebanon wounding 12 civilians in what Israel claims is a reprisal for a Hizballah attack earlier in the day, which caused no injuries. Hizballah vows it will retaliate. (RL 10/12 in WNC 10/17; NYT 10/13; MM 10/14)

Pres. Clinton authorizes the 1997 Intelligence Authorization Act, which permits the CIA, National Security Agency to collect data on foreign citizens abroad for U.S. investigations; forbids the CIA to use journalists as spies, but allows CIA agents to pose as journalists. (WP 10/12)

Secy. of State Christopher meets PLO Chmn. Arafat at U.S. embassy in Amman. At press conference after 2-hr. mtg., Arafat appeals for U.S. pressure on Israel to meet 12/13 deadline for withdrawal fr. Jericho, Gaza. Christopher declines to get involved in Israel-PLO talks, but calls for "timely implementation" of DoP schedule and pledges "non-lethal assistance" to Palestinian police. Christopher also meets separately with Jordan's King Hussein. PM Rabin claims there is "a tacit understanding" with PLO that deadline not firm. FM Peres says he will meet Arafat 12/9 at UNESCO conference in Spain. (NYT, WP, WT 12/7)

PM Rabin calls Syrian agreemento allow U.S. investigators to search for missing IDF soldiers in Lebanon "an important step forward" and "a big window of hope for the families" of the Israeli MIAs. (NYT 12/7)

Israeli Finance M. Avraham Shohat and PLO official Ahmad Qurai' resume Paris talks on economic issues. (Qol Yisra'el 12/6 in FBIS 12/7)

Palestinian gunmen attack settler van in Qiryat Arba, Hebron, killing 2 and wounding 3. Hamas claims responsibility for attack. Settlers riot, attacking Palestinian homes and cars. (NYT, WP, WT 12/7)

IDF undercover unit kills Hamas mbr. 'Abd al-Rahman Aruri, 31, on his front porch in Arura, nr. Ramallah. (MM 12/7)

Time magazine reports that convicted spy Jonathan Pollard passed a National Security Agency listing of foreign intelligence frequencies to Israel that later was received by Soviets, ruining several b. dollars' work and compromising lives of U.S. informants. Justice Dept., security officials reportedly advising AG Janet Reno against a pardon for Pollard. (WT 12/6, 12/7; NYT 12/7)

Israel, Laos reestablish diplomatic relations in agreement signed in New York. (Qol Yisra'el 12/7 in FBIS 12/8)

Military Action:

Syria fires at unmanned Israeli reconnaissance aircraft, shells IDF positions in Bekaa Valley; IDF patrol attacked in Chouf where cease-fire continues; US State Dept. reports steady infiltration of PLO forces into Lebanon, Pentagon estimates overall PLO strength at 12,000-15,000, Syrian forces at 35,000-40,000, IDF at 15,000; other estimates place number of PLO forces returning to Lebanon at 1500 over past 4 days.

Casualties:

1 IDF soldier wounded in Chouf attack.

Political Responses:

Israel/ Occupied Territories: Israeli officials describe withdrawal agreement as tantamount to peace treaty with Lebanon, predict dramatic improvement in US-Israel relations; Jewish Agency reports immigration for first 4 months of 1983 is 4538, 21% higher than same period last year, Latin America is currently largest source; Israeli settler shot and killed while shopping in Gaza's commercial center, curfew imposed; Ramallah military court sentences 5 men aged 17-22 to prison terms of 11-13 years for premeditated murder of Israeli woman killed by stones thrown at vehicle in January; Jerusalem Day celebrated; Housing Ministry announces plan for contiguous Jewish presence in northeast Jerusalem, connecting French Hill and Neve Ya'acov, using land expropriated in 1980 from Shuafat, Beit Hanina and Anata villages, private contractors to be invited to build luxury villas, other housing units; High Court of Justice permits Jewish prayer demonstration near Moghrabi Gate on Temple Mount.

Palestinians/ Lebanese: Lebanese officials meet special envoy Habib; President Gemayel meets Jordanian foreign minister, ambassadors of 5 UN Security Council permanent members; Walid Jumblatt says Lebanese Parliament is illegal because it has not held elections for deputies since 1973; Druze leadership demands constitutional reform in Lebanon as condition for agreement with Maronites to end war in Chouf.

Arab Governments: Syria says any Israeli aggression against Syria, even in Lebanon, would mean unlimited war.

US and Other Countries: Soviet Union says US and Israel are trying to partition Lebanon; Shultz, in Paris, asks Soviet Union to use its influence to obtain Syrian withdrawal; House Foreign Affairs Committee votes 18-5 to increase grant portion of US military aid to Israel to $850m, $300m more than administration request, and to increase economic aid request by $ l00m, all grant; CIA and National Security Agency reportedly received warnings a month in advance that an Iranian-backed group planned to bomb the US Embassy in Beirut.