Thursday, December 9, 1982

Military Action:

Syrian soldiers ambushed near border, setting off clashes in Tripoli; sectarian kidnappings touch off artillery, rocket duels in Souk al-Gharb and Aitat, IDF fires warning shots in attempts to stop fighting, IDF APCs move through Aley streets, proclaim curfew; US Marines to expand patrols to include Yarze section of Beirut-Damascus road.


Tripoli casualties are 16 dead, 59 wounded; 6 killed in Chouf fighting, 4 Syria soldiers killed, 11 wounded in ambush.

Political Responses:

Israel/ Occupied Territories: Sharon, in New York, says Israel is close to a secdrity arrangement with Lebanon; Commission makes public Begin's letter in which he declines to reappear, and asserts he had "no grounds" to expect massacre, asserts Phalange entered camps to deal with estimated 2,000 PLO guerrillas remaining in camps-though Phalange let into camps numbered only 100-200; Shamir, and Yaron notify Commission they intend to submit written memoranda but not testify further; Drori, who plans to reappear before Commission, and Yaron reportedly retain lawyers; others request extension of time and Commission gives them until December 15; Israeli testimony indicates only two Phalange killed during massacre.

Palestinians/ Lebanese: Arafat rejects Jordanian trusteeship role, says Hussein cannot represent Palestinians in peace negotiations; former Lebanese Prime Minister Karame appeals to Syrian President Assad to help stop fighting.

Arab Governments: Egypt urges US allies to pressure US to secure IDF withdrawal from Lebanon.

US and Other Countries: After meeting with Reagan and senior policy makers, Habib warns early withdrawal of foreign troops from Lebanon not likely, prepares to return to Mideast in renewe4 effort to bring about troop withdrawals; US Jewish groups warn Begin he may lose their support, but oppose using US aid to pressure his government; Honduran official says Sharon signed arms agreement, reportedly involving sale of Kfir jets; Thatcher sends envoy on secret visit to Morocco, raising hopes for ending crisis in UK/Arab relations.