Tuesday, November 23, 1999

The PA issues a statement saying that it "distances itself from statements made by Suha Arafat" made during Hillary Clinton's visit to Ramallah on 11/11, saying the criticisms of Israel were her own and not the PA's. The announcement was made immediately after U.S. Consul General John Herbst met with Arafat in Gaza to demand an apology. (WT 11/25, 11/28)

The Vatican criticizes Israel for its handling of the Nazareth dispute (see 11/22), saying Israel is laying the "groundwork for future contradictions and tensions" btwn. Christians, Muslims. Muslims hold a ceremony to lay the cornerstone for the new mosque. 100s of Israeli riot police deploy around Nablus, but no demonstrations or clashes are reported. (ANSA 11/23, AYM 11/24 in WNC 11/26; NYT, WP, WT 11/24; WJW 12/2; JP 12/3; ANSA 12/3 in WNC 12/6; MEI 12/10)

Jordanian police shoot, wound, arrest a man who fired a toy gun at security guards outside the Israeli emb. in Amman. (AFP 11/23 in WNC 11/24; NYT, WP 11/24; JT 11/24 in WNC 11/26)

IDF demolishes 2 Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem. (LAW 11/23)

Overnight, Jewish settlers set up 4 tents on a hill nr. Bethlehem. Israel says the IDF will dismantle the unauthorized enclave if the YESHA settlers council cannot persuade the settlers to leave voluntarily. (MM 11/23)

In Amman, 2,000 Jordanians attend solidarity rally organized by Hamas and professional unions in support of Hamas mbrs. deported on 11/21, call on the Jordanian government to step down. (JT 11/24 in WNC 11/26)