Sunday, March 29, 1998

U.S. special envoy Ross meets with PM Netanyahu, who again rejects U.S. FRD proposal, claiming that PA has not backed adequate reciprocal security steps. Ross then meets with Arafat. (CSM, WP 3/30; JP 4/11)

In Amman, PA Local Government M Erakat briefs Jordan's Dep. PM Anani on U.S. special envoy Ross's mtgs. with Arafat. (JTV 3/29 in WNC 3/31)

In Washington, senior Israeli diplomats meet with AIPAC leaders at the Israeli amb.'s residence to discuss AIPAC efforts to have congressmen sign a letter urging the U.S. not to pressure Israel on FRD. AIPAC exec. dir. Howard Kohr denies group is coordinating lobbying efforts with the Israeli government, claims letter was initiated independently by Sens. Joseph Lieberman (D-CT), Connie Mack (R-FL); emb. wanted briefing on the letter by AIPAC rather than the senators themselves because, according to Kohr, "No one knows more about the Hill than us." (NYT 4/26)

The body of Hamas mbr. Muhieddin Sharif is found in the debris of a car explosion in Ramallah, in area A. Israel claims he was making a car bomb, but PA autopsy shows that he died from 3 gunshot wounds hours before the explosion. Sharif has been on the top of Israel's wanted list for 2 yrs. (MM 4/1; ITV 4/1, 4/2 in WNC 4/4; CSM, MM, WJW, WP, WT 4/2; MM 4/7; MEI 4/10; PR 4/17)

PSF announces seizure of 7 arms caches, weapons factories belonging to Hamas. (MM 4/14)