Newsletter : 5fax0828.txt
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Publisher\Editor Don Canaan
Aug. 28, 1995, V3, #157
All the News the Big Guys Missed
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PLO/Israeli Signing Ceremony Staged
By Kim Reid (VOA-Cairo)
Israelis and Palestinians staged a showy signing ceremony in Cairo
for the hand over of eight more areas of responsibility for West
Bank civilian affairs to Palestinian rule. Israeli and Palestinian
negotiators signed an accord giving Palestinians more
responsibility in governing the West Bank, but the two sides have
not yet reached agreement on wider, more controversial issues like
The Cairo Accord signed Sunday gives Palestinians control over
eight, less controversial sectors including agriculture, fuel,
statistics and the post office. Israeli negotiator Gen. Oren
Shahor says these administrative responsibilities will be turned
over in the coming weeks.
Despite the ceremony, one PLO official called this a minor
milestone. The accord actually formalizes a deal struck by
Palestinians and Israelis a month ago in Cairo. It was recently
approved by the Israeli Cabinet.
PLO official Jamil Tarifi insists the Cairo signing is still
important. "You know there are some obstacles, but as I said, it is
very good that both sides are committed about what we agree and we
signed it and that is it. It shows both sides are committed to the
Tarifi would not say whether negotiators will meet a September
deadline on more troublesome issues like Palestinian elections, or
what to do with the Jewish settlements in the middle of the
troubled West Bank of Hebron.
US officials are pushing Israel and the PLO to resolve these issues
in time for another White House accord signing, on the second
anniversary of the PLO-Israel deal.
In a peace process more than a year behind schedule because of
missed deadlines, political observers say they will be surprised
if a full agreement is reached in time, even with pressure from
the White House.
Israel Lifts West Bank Entry Ban
By Patricia Golan (VOA-Jerusalem)
Israel has lifted the ban on Palestinians in the West Bank entering
Israel. The ban was imposed following the suicide bus bombing last
Monday in Jerusalem. Israeli troops have kept a cordon around the
autonomous town of Jericho, demanding the Palestinian authorities
turn over two wanted men. No one is being allowed to leave or enter
Following the latest attack, Israel arrested dozens of suspected
militants in the extremist Islamic organization, Hamas, and killed
two men in a shootout Friday in hebron. Two men who fled to
Jericho to evade capture by israeli security forces were arrested by
Israel says it has proof the two -- Abdel-Majid Dudin, and Rajid
al-Khatib -- helped plan the suicide bus bombing that killed five
people Monday in Jerusalem. Palestinian security officials admit
at least one of the men was a member of a Hamas ring which planned
Monday's attack and the July bus bombing near Tel Aviv.
Saturday, a Palestinian security court operating for the first
time in Jericho tried and sentenced the two to prison for what is
described as -- carrying out acts and activities that harm
Palestinian general security and hurt the peace process.
Israel insists under the Israeli-PLO self-rule agreement, the PLO
must surrender the men. The Palestinians point out the agreement
gives the Palestinian authority the right to refuse extradition if
the suspects are serving a sentence. Authorities in Jericho have
refused to release the men to Israeli custody.
Muslim Militants Killed in Hebron
By Patricia Golan (VOA-Jerusalem)
Israeli undercover troops Friday killed two wanted Muslim militants
in a shootout in Hebron. The raid is part of Israel's intensifying
battle against the Islamic militant Hamas organization which
claimed responsibility for two suicide bus bombings in the past
The clash in Hebron came two days after Israeli security services
announced the capture of dozens of members of a West Bank Hamas
network. The Shin Bet Secret Service said the ring was responsible
for bus bombings in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv which which killed 11
Hamas has threatened more suicide attacks to try to derail the
Israeli-PLO negotiations on expanding Palestinian self-rule.
The army says the two men killed in Hebron were not part of the
captured Hamas cell, but were attached to a different unit. The
Israeli commander of the West Bank says the two were on their way
to kill Jews in Hebron. Both men had been imprisoned by Israel in
the past and were on the army's wanted list.
Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin complained security agents
trying to prevent attacks by Muslim militants are hampered by too
many legal restrictions. His comments came after the disclosure
that the mastermind of the latest attack was already in custody
when a suicide bomber he had recruited blew himself up on a bus in
The prime minister's remarks touched off a debate on whether the
Secret Service should be allowed to use tougher methods in
interrogating Muslim militants.
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