Sunday, April 18, 1999

PA chief negotiator Mahmud Abbas, Local Government M Saeb Erakat arrive in Washington for talks with U.S. officials regarding the end of the Oslo interim period. (al-Ayyam 4/19, al-Quds 4/20 in WNC 4/21; al-Quds 4/21 in WNC 4/22; PR 4/23; al-Ayyam 4/24 in WNC 5/3; SA 4/27 in WNC 4/28; MM 4/28, 4/29)

PA releases 8 Hamas prisoners in Gaza, 5 of whom have been held without trial for 3 yrs. (MEI 4/23)

Israeli cabinet adopts a compromise proposal to resolve Christian-Muslim dispute in Nazareth, which it will present to Nazareth residents shortly. The plan would allow a small mosque to be built next to a scaled-down plaza for millennium pilgrims. (MM 4/19; NYT 4/20) (see 4/7)

Turkey holds elections to replace caretaker government. Far-right Nationalist Action party makes gains, Islamic Virtue party suffers setback, Kurdish People's Democratic party has strong showing in south. Democratic Left head Bulent Ecevit will stay on as PM, but will be forced to form a coalition with at least 1 other party, a process that could take several wks. (Sabah 4/18 in WNC 4/20; MIL 4/18 in WNC 4/22; MM, WP, WT 4/19; MM, NYT, WT 4/20; MM, NYT 4/21; WP 4/22; MEI 4/23)

In s. Lebanon, a civilian is wounded by IDF shelling. (RL 4/18 in WNC 4/19)