Monday, November 8, 1999

In Ramallah, PA, Israeli teams start talks on a framework agmt. on final status. Mtg. focuses on procedures for future talks, which will be held 2-3 times per wk., alternating btwn. Jerusalem, Ramallah. (MM 11/8; AFP 11/8 in WNC 11/9; al-Quds 11/8, 11/9 in WNC 11/10; MM, NYT, WP, WT 11/9; ITAR-TASS 11/10 in WNC 11/12; MEI 11/12)

In Paris, Arafat holds separate mtgs. on the peace process with French pres. Chirac, Egyptian pres. Mubarak. PM Barak discusses Syrian track with French PM Jospin. Arafat, Barak are in France to attend the 21st congress of the Socialist International. (MM 11/8; AFP, MENA 11/8 in WNC 11/9)

Israel's Atomic Energy Commission, which rarely makes public statements, releases a announcement saying "an employee died in a 12-foot fall while preparing scaffolding for a welding job at the nuclear research center [Dimona] in the Negev." The agency may have been seeking to prevent speculation about the cause of death. (NYT 11/9)

Jordan arrests leading Hamas activist `Abd al-Aziz Umary (also known as Izzat Rushuq), the 22d Hamas mbr. to be detained since the government crackdown began in 8/99; 2 other individuals are arrested, released on $5,000 bail each for "harboring" Umary. Hamas considers the arrests an escalation of hostilities. (MM, WP, WT 11/10; JT 11/10 in WNC 11/12; NYT 11/11; DUS 11/12 in WNC 11/15)