Newsletter : 4fax1219.txt
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>PD Dec. 19, 1994, V2, #227
Jewish Agency Evacuating Chechnya Jews
The Jewish Agency has decided to evacuate the Jewish community
from the embattled Russian republic of Chechnya. Fighting broke out
last week between Russian troops and Chechens who seek to secede
from Moscow. Out of a group of 80 Jews from the capital Grozny,
some were recently moved to a Russian city outside the republic,
and others were evacuated several weeks ago to Azerbaijan.
Israeli President Visits Egypt
By Laurie Kassman (Cairo)
After 15 years of official peace, Israeli President Ezer Weizman
pays a two-day state visit today to Egypt. The visit opens the way
for President Hosni Mubarak's trip to Israel, expected in the first
half of next year. The media in both countries are so far silent
about the trip.
Mubarak's top advisor terms the visit an important gesture of good
will. The Israeli President's visit marks another step toward
normalizing relations between Israel and its Arab neighbors as
efforts intensify for a comprehensive peace in the region.
Weizman meets Mubarak and other top Egyptian officials during his
stay. He will also talk with business leaders to encourage more
trade and investment.
And he will take some time for talks with former Egyptian Prime
Minister Mustafa Khalil -- his negotiating partner in the Camp
David peace talks that produced Israel's first peace treaty with
an Arab state.
Khalil has said that the positive chemistry between the two helped
ease tensions during Egyptian President Anwar Sadat's historic trip
to Jerusalem in 1977. Weizman will lay a wreath at Sadat's tomb
King David may be Instrumental in Fall of Rabin Government
By Susan Sappir (Jerusalem)
A row over the image of the biblical King David has prompted a call
for a "no confidence" vote today against the Israeli government.
Orthodox rabbis in Israel's parliament are threatening to topple
the government over a perceived insult to an ancient monarch who
ruled the land 3,000 years ago.
It all started when Foreign Minister Shimon Peres made an
uncomplimentary remark in the Knesset about the biblical King
When one religious legislator had made an unfavorable comparison
between Peres, the conciliatory peacemaker, and King David, the
brave conqueror, Peres said he did not approve of everything King
David did "on the ground or on the rooftops."
The Old Testament tells that David, upon seeing the beautiful
Bathsheba bathing on a rooftop, had her brought to sleep with him
and sent her husband to a certain death in battle.
Peres' comment sparked a shouting match after which one rabbi
member of parliament needed medical treatment for high blood
The Orthodox parties are unlikely to take Prime Minister Rabin's
government down in a "no confidence" vote, but the affair will make
it that much harder for Rabin to obtain their badly-needed support
in the future.
Arafat Apologizes for Police Attack on Israelis
By Susan Sappir (Jerusalem)
A shootout between Israeli and Palestinian security forces in Gaza
has left one wounded on each side. But the incident ended in a
An attack on Israeli soldiers by Palestinian policemen has been one
of Israel's worst possible nightmares since the Palestinian force
was created last May.
Such an attack occurred late Saturday in Palestinian-ruled Gaza,
where Israeli soldiers guard roads leading to Jewish settlements.
A Palestinian policeman approached an Israeli position, shot, and
wounded a soldier. The soldier's returned fire, wounding the
While many past incidents of Israeli-Palestinian violence have
escalated to the point of threatening their fragile peace accord,
this time Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat quickly sent an apology.
Meanwhile, the Palestinians remain unhappy with the progress of
implementing the peace accord. At a weekly Cabinet meeting,
Palestinian officials said Israel's offer of a limited troop
withdrawal from the West Bank, rather than full withdrawal,
violates the agreement.
North Korea Agrees Short-Range Test in Iran for New Missile
Ha'aretz reports that a senior American official recently told
Prime Minster Yitzhak Rabin and other senior Israeli officials that
Iran and North Korea are continuing to develop missiles that are
capable of striking Israel from Iran.
The Prime Minister said that he knew the United States was able
to curb North Korean and Iranian efforts on this matter in the
Davar reports that North Korea has agreed to Teheran's request to
hold a short-range test in Iran for the new missile. A senior
Israeli officer said that Israel is unable to prevent North Korean
and Iranian efforts to produce these missiles, but can only monitor
the developments and try to prevent them through a third party.
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