Wednesday, June 17, 1998

At a speech to the Asia Society in New York, Secy. Albright unveils a new policy initiative on Iran that could lead to normalized relations. Sanctions will remain in place for now, but U.S. plans to make confidence building gestures. (NYT, WP, WT 6/18; CSM, MM 6/19; ITV 6/21 in WNC 6/23; MEI 7/3)

Cyprus terminates contract with an Israeli company to replace the security system protecting the Cyprus Telecommunications Authority, saying it has learned that several technicians working on the project are fmr. Mossad agents. Israel calls accusations baseless. (Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation Radio 6/17, O Filelevtheros 6/18 in WNC 6/19; I Simerini 6/24 in WNC 6/25)

After 2 days of talks, Iran, Turkey sign border security agmt. (IRNA 6/17 in WNC 6/18; IRNA 6/18 in WNC 6/19)

Jordanian PM Majali ends 2-day visit to Morocco after signing several agmts. including a free trade agmt., protocols on building cultural, social, economic ties; leaves for Libya. (JTV 6/17, JT, SA 6/18 in WNC 6/19; JANA [Tripoli] 6/19 in WNC 6/22; RJ 6/20 in WNC 6/23)

After 2 days of talks in Baghdad, Egypt, Iraq agree to expand trade relations. Trade M Ahmad Gueily's visit is the 1st to Iraq by an Egyptian official since the Gulf War. (WP 6/18)

State Dept. says that it is planning new effort funded by Congress to build up opposition to Iraqi pres. Saddam Hussein by working with 73 opposition groups outside Iraq. (WP 6/18) (see 2/18)

2 Israeli teenagers fr. settlement nr. Hebron are jailed for killing a Palestinian farmer by hitting him with a wooden pole fr. a passing van. (MM, NYT 6/18; PR 6/19)

IDF demolishes 2 Palestinian homes in Bayt Hanina, n. of Jerusalem, for being built without a permit in an area zoned as "open space." (LAW 6/17) (see 6/15)

Israeli court convicts Israeli businessman Nahum Manbar, arrested 3/27/97, of selling chemical weapons equipment to Iran fr. 1990 to 1995. (WP 6/18; WT 6/19; IRNA 6/19 in WNC 6/23; JP 6/27)