Friday, February 18, 1983

Military Action:

IDF has blown up five vehicles suspected of being booby-trapped in past two weeks; Lebanese Army blocks IDF patrol at new checkpoint south of Beirut; IDF Merkava tank hit by RPG fired near Beirut-Damascus highway, Phalange radio attributes attack to Druze militia, says artillery and small arms fire continued for hours; Lebanon reportedly will introduce compulsory military service on April 18.

Political Responses:

Israel/ Occupied Territories: David Kimche, head of Israeli delegation to Lebanon negotiations, meets Habib.

Palestinians/ Lebanese: At PNC, 29 new members added to council, of whom 23 are reportedly senior PLO officers loyal to Arafat; Saiqa leader Isam al-Qadi calls for rejection of Reagan plan and struggle to thwart it; smuggling of vegetables from Israel to Lebanon increasing, valued in January at about $300,000; value of Israeli goods sold to Lebanon since invasion estimated at $50 million; in Lebanese-Israeli-US negotiations, Israel agrees to Habib proposal for first-stage withdrawal of frontline forces.

US and Other Countries: Pentagon says it plans to sell Lebanese Army 107 armored troop carriers, .50-caliber machine guns and other equipment valued at about $25 million.