Newsletter : 5fax0130.txt
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>PD Jan. 30, 1995, V3, #20
Israel Extends Palestinian Ban; Police Dogs will be Used to
By Patricia Golan (Jerusalem)
Israel has extended the ban on Palestinians entering the country
for a second week. The measure was taken in response to the latest
suicide bombing inside Israel by Islamic militants in which 21
Israelis -- most of them soldiers -- were killed.
The Cabinet voted unanimously Sunday to extend the closure of the
West Bank for at least another week. A Cabinet statement says the
closure on the Gaza Strip is dependent on how the Palestinian
authority deals with Islamic terror organizations. The measure
prevents tens of thousands of Palestinians from getting to jobs
inside Israel. PLO officials complain the continued closure is
collective punishment and will not serve peace.
Ministers at the Cabinet meeting quoted Prime Minister Yitzhak
Rabin as declaring that the peace process with the PLO is at a
crossroads, and depends on how PLO Chairman Yasir Arafat copes
with groups like Islamic Jihad and Hamas who have been responsible
for a string of attacks. These attacks, says Rabin, have a
strategic impact which threatens the entire peace process.
Last week, Rabin announced his intention to appoint a committee to
look into the economic and security implications of a total
separation between Israelis and Palestinians. On Sunday, he
empowered the police and treasury ministers to set up teams to
examine ways and means to achieve such a separation,
As a first step, Police Minister Moshe Shahal announced a program
to curtail terrorist attacks. The plan would include a security
fence, electronic alarms, increased border patrols, helicopters,
and the use of dogs to detect explosives at crossing points. In
the past, Israeli authorities were reluctant to endorse the use of
police dogs, because of the association with the Nazis' use of dogs
in World War 2 to guard Jews in concentration camps.
West Bank Students Arrested
By Patricia Golan (Jerusalem)
Israeli troops broke into a college dormitory on the West Bank
Friday, arresting over 20 students that the army says are members
of outlawed Islamic extremist groups. The raid is part of a
widening crackdown on such groups following the recent suicide
bombing in Israel.
The Israel army spokesman says that those arrested in the raid are
members of Hamas and Islamic Jihad. Among those detained is a
member of the academic staff. The army says troops also seized
material inciting violence.
The Islamic Jihad organization took responsibility for the bombing
in which 21 israelis, most of them soldiers, were killed. One of
the victims died of his wounds on Friday.
The Islamic College of Science and Technology in Abu Dis, just
outside Jerusalem city limits, is known as a stronghold of Islamic
fundamentalism. Witnesses said more than 100 Israeli troops burst
into the college dormitory early in the morning, some climbing
ladders and breaking windows to get in. The soldiers ransacked
rooms and broke down locked doors. The army says it will
compensate the college for damages. According to Palestinian
sources, four women students were slightly injured during the raid.
Auschwitz Commemoration Ends
By Wayne Corey (Krakow, Poland)
Representatives of about 30 countries have ended a commemoration of
the 50th anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi death camp of
Auschwitz in Poland.
In a demonstration of shared pain over the crimes and atrocities
that the Nazis committed here, Polish President Lech Walesa, Nobel
Peace Prize winner and Auschwitz survivor Elie Wiesel and Israeli
Knesset Speaker Shavatz Wiess walked side-by-side through the main
gate of Auschwitz. It is the gate which bears the words, "Arbeit
Macht Frei, German for "Work Makes You Free," but only death
liberated the prisoners in Auschwitz until the Soviet Red Army
arrived here 50 years ago.
As a bitterly cold wind swept across the area, the participants
in the commemoration made their way under an appropriately gray
sky to the Wall of Death where German soldiers shot prisoners.
In a brief speech there, Walesa referred to the suffering of Jews
in Auschwitz. He added that reference to his speech in an effort
to resolve differences with Jewish leaders who felt that Auschwitz
is, most of all, the symbol of the Holocaust.
Everyone then went to the Birkenau sub-camp, where Nazi gas
chambers killed 1.5 million people, as many as 8,000 a day, and
where the bodies were burned.
The mournful wail of a siren was heard, following the recitation
of Kaddish, a jewish prayer. Then Elie Wiesel, who earlier said he
felt the same fear and terror that he felt 50 years ago, recalled
the meaning of Auschwitz.
"I speak to you as a man who 50 years nine days ago, had no name,
no hope, no future, and was known only by his number: 87715."
Wiesel called Auschwitz a kingdom of darkness. "In this place," he
said, "Close your eyes and open your hearts and listen. Close your
eyes and listen. Listen for the silent screams of terrified
mothers. Listen for the wails of anguish, old men and women.
Listen for the tears of children, jewish children, a beautiful
little girl among them with golden hair, whose honorable tenderness
never left me."
Top Egyptian Islamic Leader Says He's Willing to Visit Israel
Sheikh Muhamed Said a-Tantawi, one of Egypt's top Islamic
leaders, said he is willing to visit Israel in order to speak with
Jewish religious leaders there.
The Sheikh, quoted in the Egyptian magazine el-Mousawar said
opening a dialogue and debate "are the best methods to achieve our
rights, while isolation and separation are not the methods of the
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