Thursday, May 14, 1998

In Washington, Secy. Albright, PM Netanyahu hold 2d day of fruitless talks aimed at restarting peace talks. Lower-level teams headed by U.S. special envoy Ross, Israeli Cabinet Secy. Nave will work over the weekend. Netanyahu spends rest of day making courtesy calls to mbrs. of Congress, attending lunch in his honor hosted by the Comm. on International Relations; does not lobby mbrs. to pressure administration to moderate its position. (MM 5/14; NYT, WP, WT 5/15)

100,000s of Palestinians across the West Bank, Gaza, Jerusalem turn out for 2-minute moment of silence, nonviolent "March of 1 Million" to mark 50 yrs. of dispossession (known as al-Nakba). Marches in several areas (including, Bethlehem, Gaza, Hebron, Jericho, Jerusalem, Jinin, Nablus, Ramallah) devolve into clashes with IDF, which fires live ammunition, rubber bullets, killing 5 Palestinians, wounding 200-400, making this the worst day of violence in the territories since 9/25/96. 20 Israeli soldiers, policemen and 2 civilians are also injured. Netanyahu calls demonstrations a PA "pressure tactic." (LAW, MM 5/14; IDF Radio, ITV 5/14 in WNC 5/15; NYT, WP, WT 5/15; JTV 5/14, Anatolia [Ankara], Corriere della Sera [Milan] 5/15 in WNC 5/18; LAW 5/18; WP 5/19)

50,000 Palestinians in Syria hold march in Yarmuk refugee camp to commemorate al-Nakba. (JP 5/23)

In Jerusalem, fire damages one of the wooden doors of the al-Aqsa Mosque compound. Israel police suspect Jewish extremists. (RJ 5/14 in WNC 5/15; WP 5/15)

In Ankara, Iran, Turkey hold talks on expanding ties. (IRNA 5/14 in WNC 5/18) (see 5/4)

In Ankara, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey hold follow-up discussions on the Baku-Ceyhan pipeline project. (Anatolia [Ankara] 5/14 in WNC 5/15) (see 4/26)

IDF expels 3 Lebanese civilians fr. s. Lebanon security zone for celebrating release of relative fr. SLA custody. (AFP 5/14 in WNC 5/15; RL 5/15 in WNC 5/18)