Bush admin. says Israel's 6/24 pledge not to make special effort to settle Soviet Jews in O.T. is "a hopeful development," but one that stops short of what is necessary to free $400 million in U.S. aid for immigrant housing [LAT 6/26]; despite Sharon's statement, Israeli immigration officials say they have not been notified of any policy change [NYT 6/27]; official says Sharon's statement was most definitely not a change in Israeli policy [LAT 6/26; MEM 6/29].
P.M. Shamir has sent letter to EC leaders who will meet in Dublin on 6/27. Letter declares Israeli intent to renew peace effort, adds Arab countries continue terrorism against Israel [YA 6/25 in FBIS 6/28].
Health Minister Ehud Olmert, who was in charge of minority affairs in previous gov't., announces NIS 850 million proposal to gradually improve Israeli Arab towns and villages over a 10-year period. Plan has yet to be approved by full gov't. [JPD 6/26 in FBIS 6/26].
Egyptian analysts say suspension of U.S.-PLO dialogue harms Egypt's role and prestige as interlocutor between PLO and Washington [CSM 6/26].