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Arafat, Abbas Agree to End Internal dispute

By Ha'aretz and Reuters

Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas and PA Chairman Yasir Arafat have reached an agreement to end the recent tensions between them, sparked by Abbas' resignation from the Central Committee of Arafat's Fatah movement. "The disputes are over and things are all right," Abbas told reporters after the talks ended. According to the agreement, Abbas will retain his authority over talks with Israel, but will highlight the issue of Arafat's confinement with Prime Minister Ariel Sharon during a meeting scheduled for the beginning of next week.

Palestinian Militant Group Claims Deadly Attack in Tel Aviv Nightclub

By Sonja Pace (VOA-Jerusalem &

A Palestinian militant group has claimed responsibility for an attack in a Tel Aviv nightclub, the Tarabin Restaurant near the Clock Square, early Tuesday that left one Israeli dead and another injured. Authorities say it was the first such attack in an Israeli city since the main Palestinian factions announced a self-imposed temporary halt to attacks against Israelis.

In a statement on its Web site, the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade said one of its fighters carried out the early morning attack in the Jaffa section of Tel Aviv.

According to police and witnesses, a Palestinian armed with a knife tried to enter the nightclub but was stopped by a security guard. He stabbed the guard in the neck. Customers in the club began throwing chairs at the attacker, who then fled along the seaside promenade.

As he was fleeing, the attacker fatally stabbed another man, Amir Simchon, 24, a Civil Guard volunteer. Simchon was killed while protecting his girlfriend from the stabber. She was taken to the hospital, but was found to be unhurt. The terrorist was then shot in the leg and arrested by Israeli police.

His interrogation revealed that he was a resident of eastern Jerusalem, a member of Fatah, and was driven to Jaffa by a terrorist from Jericho - for whom the search continues.

Simchon's mother asked with anguish, "What type of peace is this? They are killing us little by little." In the past five weeks, 10 Israelis have been killed in 10 separate Palestinian attacks.

The al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade is affiliated with the mainstream Fatah faction, to which both Palestinian Chairman Yasir Arafat and Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas belong. Fatah was one of the factions that agreed to a temporary freeze on attacks against Israelis late last month. Violence has dropped off dramatically since then, but some local splinter groups have refused to join the cease-ire.

Israeli officials said the Palestinian Authority was not doing enough to dismantle the militant organizations. Abbas has not wanted to move against the militants too aggressively, fearing a possible civil war.

The attack occurred just hours after Arafat met with Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas to resolve their differences over negotiating with Israel. Meanwhile, British officials said they would continue to work with Arafat, despite Israeli government calls for London to cut ties with the Palestinian leader.

UN Warns of Cutbacks in Aid to Palestinian Refugees

By Lisa Schlein (VOA-Geneva)

Last month, the United Nations agency whose mandate is to help Palestinian refugees, appealed for millions of dollars in aid. But the response has been so poor that the agency, the U.N. Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees, UNRWA, is now warning it will have to cut humanitarian assistance to hundreds of thousands of Palestinian refugees in the West Bank and Gaza.

The head of UNRWA, Peter Hansen, spoke to correspondents before the opening of a two-day seminar in Geneva called to examine the economic plight of the Palestinian people. Although Hansen said the agency has received pledges indicating donors eventually will give $35-$40 million, he said that was far less than what is needed. As a consequence, he said many important programs for the Palestinians would be reduced or come to an end.

He said half of the 1.3 million Palestinians UNRWA helps would no longer receive food. He says nearly 2,000 shelters that were completely destroyed in the West Bank and Gaza will not be rebuilt. He also said emergency employment programs would have to be drastically reduced.

"We will maybe have to cut out some 5,500 jobs," said Hansen. "That translates into 600,000 job days that a person is employed and there will be some 33,000-35,000 people affected, mainly and usually head of family losing the job." In addition, Hansen said the U.N. would have to cut down drastically on the number of people it gives emergency assistance to from 13,000 to 900.

Palestinian Authority TV: Mohammed Ordered Muslims To Kill Jews


Palestinian Media Watch has reported on yet another PLO TV broadcast presenting the murder of Jews as a religious obligation. Dr. Hassan Khader, founder of the Al Quds Encyclopedia, appeared on PA television on Sunday with the following quote from Mohammed: "The Hour [Day of Resurrection] will not arrive until you fight the Jews, [until a Jew will hide behind a rock or tree] and the rock and the tree will say: Oh Muslim, servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him!"

Although the basis for the current negotiations between Israel and the Arabs is that the conflict is not a religious dispute but rather a political one, PLO religious and academic leaders repeatedly cite Islamic sources demanding, in the name of Allah, that Jews be hated and even killed.

PMW said the broadcast was but another example of the world-view propagated by the PA media according to which Redemption is dependent on Muslims' murder of Jews. PMW also reported that yet another PA summer camp for children has been named for a terrorist. The most recent one is now named Shihad Al-Amarin, in memory of the founder of the suicide terror division of Fatah's Al-Aksa Martyrs Brigade.

Other schools and camps have been named for Dalal Mughrabi, who participated in the bus hijacking and murder of 37 Jews in Israel in 1978; for Ayyat al-Akhras, an Arab girl who killed two Israelis as she blew herself up in a supermarket in Jerusalem in March 2002, and others.

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