Sunday, October 4, 1998

Egyptian pres. Mubarak meets with Syrian pres. Asad in Damascus on 1st leg of shuttle aimed at reducing avoiding military conflict btwn. Syria, Turkey. Syria also accepts Iran's offer to mediate. To reassure Syria, Israel scales back its routine maneuvers in the Golan. (IRIB Television, Radio Kuwait, SATN 10/4, ATL, MENA, RL, VOA 10/5 in WNC 10/6; CSM, MM, NYT, WP, WT 10/5; HUR, Sabah 10/5, MA, al-Quds 10/6 in WNC 10/7; al-Quds al-Arabi 10/5 in WNC 10/14; MM 10/6, 10/7; WP 10/8) (see 10/3)

U.S. holds 1-day naval exercise with Algeria as part of a quiet effort to rebuild ties; says maneuvers are a reward to Algeria for allowing foreign groups to investigate human rights allegations, not backing of it's war against Islamists. However, State Dept. says that "we're not going to . . . join their war until we're sure they are for reform and the human rights situation gets better." (WP 11/12)

Clashes btwn. Palestinians, IDF continue in Hebron, spread to Halhul. IDF says curfew will remain in place indefinitely. PSF arrests 2 prominent Hamas activists, 10 other suspected Hamas mbrs. in Hebron. (ITV 10/4 in WNC 10/6; HA [Internet] 10/6; PR 10/9)

Jewish settlers at the Ma'ate Hever settlement nr. Hebron move their boundary fences to enclose another 7 acres of Palestinian land. (MEI 10/16)