Sunday, March 5, 1995

PM Rabin reiterates offer to Syria of  "very small" withdrawal fr. Golan in exchange for 3-yr. period to "test" full normalization, open border, exchange of embassies. Pres. al-Asad rejects proposal again, encourages U.S. to offer new ideas to activate talks. Both say if there is no progress by this summer, there will be little hope for an agmt. before 1996 Israeli, U.S. elections. (WT 3/6; RMC 3/5, 3/6 in FBIS 3/6; MM, WT 3/7; MM 3/8; WJW 3/9)

Annual IDF intelligence assessment is presented to Israeli cabinet. Report is pessimistic about securing peace with Syria, says Arafat is not asserting his authority in Gaza, finds probability for war low but says violent acts will likely increase. (MM, WT 3/6; QY 3/5, HA, JP, QY 3/6 in FBIS 3/6; WJW 3/9; JP 3/11)

Arafat, Israeli Police M Shahal meet to discuss "pending issues." IDF claims Arafat also transmitted message fr. Iraqi Pres. Saddam Hussein to PM Rabin expressing willingness to sign peace treaty with Israel. PA denies claim. (MM 3/6; al-Sharq al-Awsat 3/6 in FBIS 3/7)

Senate Foreign Affairs Comm. Chairman Jesse Helms calls for abolition of all foreign aid; asks that $3 b. aid to Israel become part of defense budget; claims similar plan was proposed by Secy. of State Christopher but was shot down by VP Al Gore, Dep. Secy. of State Strobe Talbott, Undersecretary of State Tim Wirth. (WT 3/6) (see 3/3)

Israeli ships enforcing naval blockade of s. Lebanon fire on Adlun port, south of Tyre, killing 1 fisherman. (QY, RL 3/5 in FBIS 3/6)