Tuesday, May 28, 1991

Top-level PLO delegation, comprising Pol. Dept. Head Faruq al-Qaddumi, Information Dept. Head Yasir 'Abd Rabbuh, Exec. Comm. members Mustafa al-Zibri (Abu 'Ali Mustafa), Sulayman al-Najab, meets with Pres. al-Asad in Damascus, Meeting seen as part of recent efforts to improve PLO-Syrian relations in wake of diplomatic setback faced by PLO after Gulf war. (NYT 5/29)

Delegation also meets with officials of dissident Palestinian National Salvation Front in Damascus. Meeting centers on reconciliation between PLO and PNSF. At PLO insistence, Col. Sa'id Musa Muragha's (Abu Musa) Fateh-Uprising group not represented. Reconciliation efforts come during increased PLO-Syrian dialogue. (MEM 5/17; NYT, MEM 5/29; CSM 5/30)

Hizballah leader 'Abbas al-Musawi claims his group holds two Israeli prisoners, but Israel has failed to meet conditions for their release. States Israel willing to release Lebanese prisoners it held only; Hizballah demanded release of Palestinian prisoners as well. Israeli Def. Min. Arens expressed optimism over prospects for possible prisoner exchange. (WP 5/28)

Israel convicts Palestinian Fu'ad Hasan al-Shar' of participating in 1983 attempt to blow up airliner belonging to Israeli state airline El Al. Al-Shari' sentenced to 25 years imprisonment. (WP 5/28)

Greek appeals committee upheld Italy's request to extradite 'Abd al-Rahim Khalid, Palestinian sentenced in abstentia to life imprisonment in 1987 by court in Genoa for alleged role in October 1985 hijacking of Italian ship Achille Lauro. Khalid, arrested 5/5 in Athens, faces two more avenues of appeal before extradition can proceed. (NYT 5/29)