Tuesday, October 8, 1985


Occupied Palestine/Israel: Israeli forces demolish homes of 5 members of Palestinian cell captured or killed in hills south of Hebron 10/6. Surif village placed under curfew during demolitions [JP 10/9].

Arab World: Two senior PLO officials leave for Cairo to help Egyptian officials negotiate with the Achille Lauro hijackers [LAT 10/9]. Arafat tells Italian P.M. Bettino Craxi he "entirely condemns" the hijacking and does not know who is responsible [MG 10/9]. The Damascus-based faction of the Palestine Liberation Front, headed by Tala'at Ya'qub, denounces the hijacking of the Achille Lauro as piracy. An anonymous caller to Agence France Presse says the Abu al-'Abbas faction of the Palestine Liberation Front, allied with Fateh, is responsible for the hijacking [NYT 10/10].

Other Countries: U.S. seeks to obtain worldwide guarantee that no country will allow the Achille Lauro to dock in its port while the hijackers are still in control. Italy rejects use of force to try to rescue passengers on Achille Lauro [LAT 10/9]. Dutch Def. Min. Job de Ruiter announces Dutch troops will be withdrawn from UN peacekeeping force deployed north of Lebanese-Israeli border because of "concern for their safety" [MG 10/9].

Military Action

Arab World: Achille Lauro steams toward Syria, then Cyprus; is refused entry at both. Ship retums to Egyptian coast, hijackers begin negotiations with Egyptians [NYT 10/13].

Other Countries: U.S. guided missile destroyer Scott cuts short shore leave in Haifa to monitor hijacked Italian cruise ship Achille Lauro in Eastem Mediterranean [NYT 10/9].