Newsletter : 5fax0815.txt
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Publisher\Editor Don Canaan
Aug. 15, 1995, V3, #148
All the News the Big Guys Missed
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Taba Accord Leads to Tunisia
By Patricia Golan (Jerusalem) and Laurie Kassman (Cairo)
PLO leader Yasir Arafat has gone to Tunis to ask the Executive
Committee to approve a partial Israel/PLO accord on the expansion
of Palestinian self-rule in the West Bank. In Jerusalem, Jewish
settlers have clashed with israeli police as tension mounts about
the agreement, approved by the Israeli Cabinet. Israeli police used
mounted police and water cannon to disperse the crowds who were
protesting the arrest of two settlers suspected in the fatal
shooting of a Palestinian in an earlier confrontation between
settlers and Palestinians in the West Bank.
The shooting came after Arab villagers tried to pull down and
burn a makeshift illegal encampment. At least one settler
responded by firing into the crowd.
Israeli officials insist that nothing will be allowed to prevent
the implementation of the agreement under which Israeli soldiers
are to withdraw in stages from much of the West Bank no later
than July 1997. On Sunday, Israel's Cabinet approved the agreement by
an overwhelming majority.
Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, meanwhile, has reiterated his
government's position that Israel will not return to the borders
before the 1967 war. He said Israel must control the Jordan Valley
and strategic points in the West Bank. "To defend Israel against
external military threat by Arab or Muslim country has to be done
there and not 50 kilometers closer to Netanya and Tel Aviv, this
should be the defense lines of Israel."
Rabin was speaking in Jerusalem after receiving a peace prize from
Hadassah, an international Jewish women's organization. He was
heckled during his speech by about 200 right-wing protestors.
After Israel's Cabinet approved a partial deal to expand autonomy
in the West Bank, now it is up to Arafat to explain the details to
the PLO Executive Committee in Tunis. Arafat will be discussing
the autonomy deal -- including what has been agreed already and
what has not. The negotiations have been at an impasse for months
over security concerns, water-sharing rights and other key issues
involved in transferring authority to Palestinians in the West
Many of the 18 Executive Committee members have opposed the peace
deal with Israel as too little, too late.
Last week, Arafat and Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres worked
at resolving some of the issues blocking agreement but were not
able to resolve them all. The negotiating teams are continuing
their talks, but the two decision-makers are expected to meet again
later this week or next to find a compromise on other deadlocked
The PLO had hoped to get the deal completed in order to hold
Palestinian elections before the end of this year. Under the 1993
self-rule deal, they should have been held a year ago.
King Hussein Says Iraq is Ripe for Change
By Laurie Kassman (Cairo)
Speaking out for the first time about the Iraqi defections, King
Hussein told an Israeli daily newspaper -- Yediot Ahronot -- it is
the right time for change in Iraq. The Jordanian monarch told the
newspaper he had not been in contact with Saddam Hussein since
two high-ranking defectors arrived in Jordan.
King Hussein is quoted in the newspaper as saying -- if a change
does occur in Iraq -- it will only be for the better. The Jordanian
monarch says he was shocked by the defections, but suggests they
could be the start of better times for the Iraqi people. He did
Some Jordanian officials have warned against letting the defecting
Iraqi officials use Jordan as a base of operation, out of fear of
retaliation from Iraq.
The former Iraqi Minister of Industry, Gen. Hussein Kamel Hassan,
his brother and their families fled Baghdad last Tuesday and asked
for asylum in Jordan. They were accompanied by their wives -- both
daughters of Saddam Hussein.
Saturday, Gen. Hassan told a news conference in Amman he will work
seriously for the overthrow of his father-in-law, Saddam Hussein,
to end the country's downward economic slide and political
isolation. He says he wants to get crippling UN sanctions against
King Hussein told Yediot Ahronot Gen. Hassan stopped to see him in
Amman several weeks ago. He told the monarch he was upset with the
way Iraq was run, but did not indicate he was about to defect.
Gen. Hassan was considered a close ally of the Iraqi ruler. He
was in charge of Iraq's secret weapons program during the 1980s
and supervised development of the biological, chemical, and nuclear
Most recently, Gen. Hassan worked with UN inspectors to dismantle
the programs. Iraq's deputy prime minister now accuses him of
holding back vital information and has offered to provide it to UN
The gesture is seen as part of Baghdad's efforts to undermine the
significance of the defections from Saddam Hussein's inner circle.
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