Tuesday, December 21, 1993

Israeli delegation under FM Peres meets PLO delegation headed by Yasir 'Abd-Rabbuh in Paris in effort to break deadlock over withdrawal fr. Jericho, Gaza. Sides remain divided over size of area around Jericho to be evacuated, security arrangements at border crossings. (CSM, NYT, WP 12/22)

Bethlehem municipality prepares for 1st official Christmas celebrations since 1986, saying observance will go on despite dispute with occupation authorities over display of Palestinian flag at city hall. Israeli authorities bar erection of Christmas tree donated by Norway, citing concerns over plant diseases. (WT 12/22; NYT, WP 12/23)

IDF permits 1,000 settlers to carry Torah scroll to yeshiva in Nablus. Ceremony attended by 4 MKs. IDF had blocked similar attempt 12/16. (MM 12/22)

Pope John Paul II announces plan to visit Lebanon in spring 1994, intention to visit Jerusalem. (MM 12/21; WP, WT 12/22)