Newsletter : 6fax1223.txt
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>PD Dec. 23, 1996, Vol. 4, #232
Egypt Supplying Ammunition to Palestinians
Arutz-7 has learned that Egypt has been transferring large
quantities of ammunition to the Palestinian Authority over the
course of the last few days. The ammunition is first oiled by IDF
soldiers, who then conduct ballistic tests and accordingly register
each piece before handing them over to the Palestinians. According
to the Oslo accords, the Palestinians are permitted to have 10,000
pieces of ammunition.
Israel May Accept Limited Palestinian State
David Bar-Illan, Director of Policy Planning and Communications
in the Prime Minister's Office, says that, "A Palestinian state
with strictly defined, limited sovereignty - including
demilitarization - is something Israel may be able to accept."
In an interview published in the Jerusalem Post, Bar-Illan said,
"In many ways, [the autonomy] is [already] a state. Minister Ariel
Sharon keeps saying they really have a state already."
He said that if Israel is not absolutely vigilant about setting
limits for Arafat, he is convinced the Palestinian leader would
declare a holy war on Israel. He termed Arafat's current regime a
"police state" and says Israel cannot keep "lying" about this, but
must press the case of Palestinian violations of Oslo.
Bomb Explodes at IDF Bus Stop
By Al Pessin (VOA-Jerusalem)
A bomb went off at a bus stop frequented by Israeli soldiers near
Bethlehem, Sunday morning, and Palestinians threw several firebombs
at Israeli army patrols in Hebron. There were no injuries.
Meanwhile, the chief US mediator arrived from Washington and met
with the top Israeli and Palestinian leaders on the long-delayed
Israeli withdrawal from Hebron.
Mediator Dennis Ross arrived Saturday evening and went right into
a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. From
there, he drove to Gaza for an after-midnight session with
Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat.
A few hours later, explosives lashed to a gas canister and set
with a timer exploded at a bus stop outside an Israeli settlement
near Bethlehem. A witness told Israel Radio it was a "real
miracle" there were no soldiers or young students at the bus stop
at the moment the bomb went off.
Sunday mornings -- when Israeli soldiers are returning to their
posts after weekend leave -- are a popular time for Palestinian
militants to attack buses and bus stops. But Bethlehem is usually
a quiet area and local officials are hoping problems in the peace
process will not hurt this week's expected Christmas tourist
As the day went on, Palestinians threw several fire bombs at
Israeli patrols in Hebron, causing small fires but no injuries.
Palestinians and Israeli settlers clashed in Hebron Saturday, in
a melee apparently started by a dispute between Israeli and
Palestinian schoolgirls. Tension has been particularly high in
the city as the withdrawal talks have dragged on.
Those talks continued amid Sunday's disturbances, with Palestinian
and Israeli negotiators holding meetings and Ross sitting down with
Israel's foreign and defense ministers. Ross says he does not
expect any breakthrough on Hebron during his visit, which is
expected to end today. Rather, he says his mission is to
"energize" the peace process.
Still, Arafat was upbeat before dawn Sunday, at the end of his
meeting with Ross. The Palestinian leader described the session as
"fruitful, constructive and important." Earlier, Arafat had
questioned Ross' impartiality.
Kissinger: U.S. Should Resolve Matter of a Palestinian State
By David Gollust (VOA-Washington)
Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger says it may be time for
a US/led diplomatic effort to resolve the question of whether there
will be a Palestinian state. Otherwise, he suggests, haggling over
secondary issues like Hebron may permanently stall the regional
Kissinger admits that as Secretary of State in the Nixon and Ford
administrations, he himself pioneered a step-by-step approach to
Middle East peace making. But he now says it may be time for the
parties -- with US mediation -- to come to grips with the
fundamental question of Palestinian statehood. Appearing on the
"Fox News Sunday" interview program, Kissinger said the current
impasse over Hebron shows that if such issues are dealt with one at
a time, the result will be endless deadlock.
"The key issues are will there be a Palestinian state at the end of
this process, and what are the borders of that state going to be?
If those two issues can be solved, all the issue like how many
troops there are in a city called Hebron will become secondary."
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