Wednesday, February 27, 1991

Declaring "Kuwait is liberated" 100 hours after ground war commenced, Pres. Bush orders suspension of offensive military operations against Iraq as long as Iraq does not attack allied forces or launch missiles at any country [NYT, LAT, WP, WT 2/28; CSM 3/1]; Pres. Bush also sets demands on Iraq for permanent cease-fire; complying with all 12 UN resolutions; freeing all POWs and detainees; giving allies location of all land and sea mines. Bush adds he is sending Sec. Baker to Middle East to deal with "the difficult task of securing a potentially historical peace" [NYT, WP, WT 2/28].

Before suspension of hostilities, 4 U.S. Army armored divisions defeat resisting Republican Guard units in large tank battle; Gen. Schwarzkopf says there are more than 50,000 total Iraqi POWs and "a very, very large number" of Iraqi dead [MEM 2/27; NYT, LAT, WP, WT 2/28; MET 3/12]; allied officials and relief organizations discuss what to do with growing number of POWs who do not wish to return to Iraq [LAT 2/28].

Kuwaiti army returns to Kuwait City, is met by cheering civilians; gov't. buildings are reported destroyed by retreating Iraqis [LAT, WP, CSM 2/28].

In Damascus, Pres. Asad meets with Lebanese Pres. Hrawi to discuss Middle East future; thousands of Palestinians in Sidon demonstrate against U.S. [DDS 2/27 in FBIS 2/28; LAT 2/28; MET 3/12].

Congressmen say they fear allies will not follow through on monetary pledges made to U.S. during Gulf war; Congress members are reportedly especially upset at Japan [LAT 2/28].

Egyptian police fire rubber bullets at stone-throwing students at Cairo University where thousands protest war against Iraq for 3d consecutive day [AFP 2/27 in FBIS 3/1; MET 3/12].

Prominent Palestinian nationalist, Dr. Mamdouh al-Aker, is arrested on suspicion of helping to write UNLU leaflets, apparently as part of Israeli crackdown on Palestinian moderates (cf. 4/7) [MEM 2/28].