Tuesday, July 13, 1999

In Rome, King Abdallah of Jordan holds talks with Italian officials, who agree to forgive or reschedule $130 m. of Jordan's debt. The king then heads to Aqaba, where he receives Israeli PM Barak for brief talks on the peace process. Barak promises to honor all agmts. with the Palestinians, including the Wye accord; says he has received positive messages fr. Damascus, hopes that negotiations with Syria will resume soon. (RJ 7/13, JT 7/14 in WNC 7/15; JT [Internet], MM, NYT 7/14)

PA Planning M Shaath says that the PA, under U.S. pressure to avoid friction with the new Israeli government, will seek the speedy adjournment of the 7/15 UN mtg. of the signatories to the Fourth Geneva Convention. The mtg. was planned as an open-ended session to consider possible sanctions against Israel for human rights violations and settlement activity in the occupied territories. (AFP, MBC 7/13 in WNC 7/15; NYT, WT 7/14)

In Iran, student demonstrations devolve into riots, with clashes btwn. student groups, other individuals on the one hand and police, Ansar-e Hezbollah mbrs. on the other. Some 1,400 demonstrators have been arrested over the past 6 days. (GIU, MM 7/13; AFP, IDF Radio, IRIB Television 7/13 in WNC 7/15; CSM, MM, NYT, WP 7/14; MEI 7/16; WP 7/18)

Lebanon asks the UN to investigate reports that Israel has again been stealing soil fr. s. Lebanon. The UN, U.S. intervened with Israel in 11/98 after the IDF confirmed that Israelis were hauling fertile topsoil fr. occupied s. Lebanon into Israel. (VOL 7/13 in WNC 7/15; WT 7/14; al-Ba`th 7/19 in WNC 7/23) (see 11/6/98)

In Tripoli, Iranian, Libyan officials discuss expanding bilateral ties. (IRNA 7/14 in WNC 7/15)

ILMG meets for 1st time since 6/24 incidents; discusses 16 Lebanese complaints, 21 Israeli complaints. (RL 7/13 in WNC 7/15; Tishrin 7/15 in WNC 7/20) (see 7/8)