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                             ISRAEL
                              FAXX

Publisher\Editor Don Canaan

                       Oct. 3, 1995, V3, #180
All the News the Big Guys Missed

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Peres Calls for Syrian and Lebanese Peace

By Michele Keleman (VOA-New York) & Elaine Johanson (VOA United Nations)

Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres said Monday he is confident parliament will approve the accord signed in Washington last week extending Palestinian self-rule in the West Bank. But, he admits the vote will be close.

Speaking after his address to the UN General Assembly in New York, Peres said despite some internal opposition he is optimistic the new PLO-Israeli accord will be approved when it comes before the Israeli parliament Thursday.

Peres acknowledged Israel's dispute with the Palestinians over the release of prisoners will be difficult to resolve, but pledged Israel will follow through on its promises. "We are going to release prisoners, but we are not going to release, at least for now, prisoners who have stains of blood on their hands."

A top aide to PLO leader Yasir Arafat has warned that Israel will violate the peace deal if it refuses to release Palestinian women Prisoners, including one who was convicted of killing Jews. Israel is delaying any action until parliament considers the autonomy agreement on Thursday.

Meanwhile, Peres has urged Arab nations to help Palestinians financially to ensure the peace agreement succeeds. He says he thinks his message is getting through.

Peres says he firmly believes the difference between a peace agreement and peace in reality is economic development.

Peres called on Syria and Lebanon to contribute to Middle East stability by making peace with Israel. The Israeli official pressed his message in the General Assembly. Peres delivered an impassioned plea to Syria and Lebanon to follow the Palestinian example -- to do what Jordan was brave enough to do -- get more involved in the peace process. He said the fruits of peace will be greater security and prosperity for the younger generation:

"I would like to use this occasion to tell to the Syrians and to tell to the Lebanese to stop hesitating, to stop wandering. They have to come in and follow-up...not that we want to have a new Middle East. But we want the Middle East to join in a new age, for the good of their people.
The Israeli foreign minister also called on rich Arab countries to make a greater contribution and help lift the region out of poverty. He said economic growth is the best guarantee of peace.

Israelis Demonstrate in Jordan

By Al Pessin (VOA-Jerusalem)

Israeli settlers crossed illegally into Jordan Monday to gain publicity for their effort to block the Israeli government's plan to give control of much of the West Bank to the Palestinian Autonomy Authority.

About 100-settlers tore down a fence along the Jordan River and walked across -- in chest-high water -- to demonstrate on the Jordanian side. They gave a letter for King Hussein to a Jordanian soldier, and then crossed back about an hour later. Israeli police detained some of them briefly and officials say charges might be filed against them.

The settlers say the government's plan to give the Palestinian Authority civil responsibility in areas near the Jordan River puts nearby Israeli settlements at risk, and also endangers all of Israel by surrendering the strategic river valley. But the government says it is not giving up security control in the area, and that its moves to expand Palestinian autonomy under the new agreement will not endanger settlements.

Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin met with his Cabinet Monday and said the interim agreement calls for a slight expansion of the Jericho autonomous zone, from 62 to 68 square kilometers. But he said the expansion will enlarge Jericho to the west, away from the river and the Israeli security zone along it. Israel is also to give full autonomy, including security control, to six other Palestinian cities and much of a seventh -- the tense town of Hebron. It will also give partial autonomy -- with a continuing, reduced role for the Israeli army -- to 450 villages and some rural areas.

Foreign Minister Shimon Peres has announced there will be a symbolic withdrawal from some villages this week, and the larger-scale withdrawal will begin in November. Israel has also promised to release 2,000 Palestinian prisoners under the agreement, but the country's Supreme Court ruled Monday no prisoners may be released until after the Israeli parliament ratifies the accord.

The parliament is to debate the agreement Thursday, and is expected to approve it by a narrow margin.

Security Forces Placed on High Alert for Holidays

The IDF and the police are reinforcing detachments in the territories and inside Israel following reports extremist Muslim groups will attempt to carry out attacks. In addition, the closure on Judea, Samaria and Gaza has been extended to Thursday. Intelligence and General Security Service officials believe that organizations opposed to the Interim Agreement will attempt to protest the accord by carrying out a deadly suicide attack in a populated area inside Israel.

Ma'ariv reports the upcoming holidays of Yom Kippur and Succot are thought of as the preferred dates for an attack by Hamas' military wing.

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