Newsletter : 6fax1211.txt
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>PD Dec. 11, 1996, Vol. 4, No. 224
A Gesture to Arab Journalists
120 special permits to enter pre-1967 Israel have been granted
in the last few days to Palestinian journalists. The permits were
granted by special order of Prime Minister Netanyahu. His media
advisor explained that the permits are intended to ease the work of
Palestinian journalists within the major Jewish population centers.
Israeli Housing Planned for East Jerusalem
By Patricia Golan (VOA-Jerusalem)
An Israeli planning commission Tuesday approved a plan for a Jewish
housing project in the heart of an Arab neighborhood in disputed
east Jerusalem and the plan is being contested by Arab residents.
Jerusalem city planners approved plans to build 132 housing units
in east Jerusalem's Ras al-Amud neighborhood. East Jerusalem was
captured by Israel in the 1967 Middle East war and formally
annexed, but Israeli sovereignty there has never received
Jerusalem's future is to be negotiated in final status talks,
which have yet to resume under the government of Prime Minister
Approval of the plan is certain to infuriate Palestinians, who
want to establish the capital of their future state in east
Jerusalem. Palestinian officials and Israeli opposition members
warn the plan could provoke a violent outburst, if implemented.
The housing plan, which is to be financed in part by private
American funds, must be signed by Israel's interior minister.
Officials are linking construction of apartments intended for
Arab residents of east Jerusalem to the implementation of the
Jewish housing plan. But a lawyer representing the Arab residents
says he will try to get a court order to prevent that plan from
being carried out.
Palestinians Possess Anti-Tank, Anti-Aircraft Missiles
The Palestinian Security Service is attempting to equip itself
with anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles according to a report in
this week's edition of Time Magazine.
Senior Palestinian police officers denied involvement in weapons
smuggling, but at the same time, the officers admitted that they
posses a dozen anti-tank missiles that were confiscated from
Islamic extremists or contributed to the Palestinian Authority by
An officer in the IDF's Southern Command is quoted as saying that
other weapons which are prohibited under Israeli-Palestinian
agreements have entered the Gaza Strip. Israeli representatives
have appealed to the Palestinian Authority on several occasions to
receive reports on such weaponry. Israeli security sources said
that advanced weaponry is also possessed by Hamas and Islamic Jihad
activists in the territories. The weapons are usually smuggled
from Egypt into the Gaza Strip.
Israeli, Arab Officials Discussing Connecting Railway Systems
Israeli and Arab representatives discussed integrating Israel's
railway system with those of neighboring Arab countries at a
secret meeting held three weeks ago in Mitzpe Ramon.
The meeting was attended by members of the "Israel 2000 Forum," the
head of Jordan's Railway Authority, a representative of Egypt's
Railway Authority and representatives of a British railway company
which has demonstrated interest in the Middle East.
According to the discussions, Israel would be transformed --
separately from the peace process -- into a gateway to Arab states.
This would enable the passage of goods from Europe and the east
coast of the United States to Arab countries. In addition, the
railway links would provide transit routes for Islamic tourism to
holy sites in Israel.
Arab Knesset Member: "Continue the Intifada"
Ahmed Sa'ad from the Hadash party says that Israeli Arabs are
identical to Palestinians for all intents and purposes. In an
interview broadcast on Voice of Palestine Radio marking the ninth
year since the outbreak of the intifada, Sa'ad declared Israeli
Arabs do not merely exhibit solidarity with the Palestinians'
"struggle, but are part of it."
He called for the continuation of the intifada until a Palestinian
state is set up. Voice of Palestine Radio reported that it was the
Palestinian Authority that was behind Monday's taking over of the
Moslem College campus in Hebron by hundreds of students. The action
was organized through the "Shabiba" movement, the youth wing of the
Palestinian Liberation Organization.
A Carpet That Knows How to Count
Israeli inventors Ehud Goren and Efraim Garti have devised a
carpet, the first of its kind in the world, that can count the
number of persons using it to enter or leave a building, such as a
shopping mall. In this way, a security guard at the end of the day
can determine if the number of people who entered also left the
building. The carpet can also signal the weight of those entering.
It took three years to develop the device, and the model will soon
be marketed. It is 60 meters wide and has sensors woven into it.
The first models will cost several thousand dollars.
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