Wednesday, February 16, 2000

On his way home fr. the Vatican (see 2/15), Palestinian Authority (PA) head Yasir Arafat stops in Amman to meet with King Abdallah of Jordan. (MM 2/16)

Israel PM Ehud Barak phones Egyptian pres. Husni Mubarak to discuss obstacles blocking the Palestinian, Syrian tracks of the peace process. (MENA 2/17 in WNC 2/18)

Reacting to the flare-up of violence in s. Lebanon in the past 3 wks., Israel empowers a 3-man team comprising PM Barak, FM David Levy, Transportation M Yitzhak Mordechai to authorize immediate reprisals for attacks on Israel Defense Force (IDF) soldiers, reiterates intention to hit civilian targets. 2,000 Lebanese students block Hamra street in Beirut's main shopping district to protest against Israel for its recent air strikes, the U.S. for allegedly giving Israel the "green light" to attack. (MM 2/16, 2/17; RL 2/17 in WNC 2/18; AYM 2/17 in WNC 2/22; CSM, MM, NYT, WP, WT 2/18; NYT 2/19; MM 2/21; MEI 2/25)

U.S. Secy. of State Madeleine Albright tells the House International Relations Comm. that she is exploring ways to help victims of state-sponsored terrorism collect on judgements returned by U.S. courts even though Pres. Bill Clinton has blocked collection, citing foreign policy concerns and worries that other countries could use the precedent to seize U.S. properties abroad. (WP 2/17; Guardian Weekly 2/24)

PA General Intelligence questions Palestinian journalist Khaled Amayreh for the 2d time in a wk. regarding his new weekly paper, Hebron Times, which is critical of the PA. (Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring Group press release 2/21) (see 2/15)