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  Israel Faxx                                      \/ /  \/ /
  Sept 20, 1994 Volume 2, #170                     / /\__/_/\
  Electronic World Communications, Inc.           /__\ \_____\
  8916 Reading Road, Cincinnati, OH 45215             \  /
  Internet: Phone: (513) 563-7424   \/

PLO Chairman Yasir Arafat has announced his intent to visit the Temple Mount this coming Friday, Chol Hamoed Sukkot.

Golan Settlers Protest Possibility of Withdrawal on Golan

Settlers from the Golan Heights have erected a tent camp at Gamla, the site of an ancient Jewish settlement in the Golan, and have begun a hunger strike to protest the government's policy regarding the Golan Heights. Many Israelis visited the protesters over the weekend, including members of Kibbutz El Rom, located in the Golan Heights.

There has been speculation in the media that the kibbutz could be the first Jewish settlement on the Golan Heights evacuated by Israel. The kibbutz members sent a letter to Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin asking him to comment on the reports. Kibbutz El Rom Secretary General Shimon Brown said "members of the kibbutz will struggle against a planned evacuation using all legal methods available."

Brown added that the kibbutz members will abide by whatever decision the government takes on the issue, emphasizing that there are some settlers in the Golan Heights who are prepared to leave the area in exchange for a "real" peace with Syria. Several members of Knesset, some ministers and a group of Druze residents of the Golan Heights were among those who visited the Gamla tent camp over the weekend.


Hatzofeh notes that Kibbutz El Rom -- slated to be the first Jewish community on the Golan Heights to be evacuated -- belongs to the Labor Party-affiliated United Kibbutz Movement. Thus, the paper feels that Prime Minister Rabin can not dismiss its members who have decided to join the hunger-strikers at Gamla as, 'right-wing protesters, as he is seeking to present those who oppose the withdrawal policies of the government he heads.' The paper calls upon the public to go up to the Golan during the Sukkot holiday, 'and identify with the struggle of the Golan's residents, because their struggle is all of Israel's.'

Rabin Invites Assad to Visit Jerusalem

Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin said he has invited "(Syrian) President Assad to visit Jerusalem." Rabin added that he has extended several invitations to Assad to visit Jerusalem, saying "I invited Assad several times, both officially and through the Americans, but he refused."

Rabin said that even though Assad does not support using a secret direct channel of negotiations, secret talks are being conducted through the United States. Regarding a possible national referendum on an eventual agreement with Syria, Rabin said that the referendum would include the stages of a withdrawal on the Golan Heights, the depth of a withdrawal, a timetable and security arrangements.

Two Israelis Injured in Separate Stabbing Incidents

IDF soldier El'ad Saban was stabbed Sunday at the Ge'ah junction near Petah Tikva by two Arab assailants. One of the attackers, a 19 year-old from the West Bank village of Beit Surif, was captured by bystanders while the second assailant escaped. Saban, who was on the way to his base, was taken to a nearby hospital. In an unrelated incident, an Israeli was stabbed in the Arab village of Ib Ta'an Sunday.

Ten Arab and Muslim Countries Agree to Establish Postal Links with Israel

The move came at the 21st Congress of the Universal Postal Union which was held last week in Seoul, South Korea. The countries are Algeria, Afghanistan, Brunei, Djibouti, Indonesia, Jordan, Morocco, Oman, Qatar and Tunisia.

School Opens in Egypt

By Laurie Kassman (Cairo)

Egyptian youngsters returned to school last weekend, and the high court has backed the education minister's ruling that pre-adolescent girls do not have to wear headscarves unless their parents want them to.

Just a few days before schools were due to open, Egypt's high court overturned a decision from the lower courts and ruled that the education minister does have the right to set dress codes for government schools.

The minister Hussein Bahaa Eddin announced last may that young girls could wear the traditional Muslim headscarf, known as the hejab, only with their parents' permission. That was aimed at stopping some fundamentalist teachers from requiring their female students to wear the hejab in class.

But it caused a furor, and a group of teachers and parents filed a lawsuit to get the ruling reversed on the grounds that only parliament could issue dress codes, not a minister.

In the end, the minister's ruling has been upheld but only for pre-adolescent girls. Schools must inform parents if their daughter is wearing a headscarf to make sure they know. Muslim fundamentalists say the Koran requires girls to cover their hair and necks, but more liberal Muslims say the Islamic holy book only requires modest female attire.

Conservative Muslim lawyers have filed a series of lawsuits against government ministers to force a stricter adherence to Islamic teachings. Parents express mixed feelings about it all.

One father waiting for his daughter outside the school gate in a Cairo neighborhood said he did not mind if a teacher told his four-year old daughter to wear the headscarf. He suggested it would get her used to the tradition early on.

A teacher is like a substitute parent, he said. But he acknowledged he would rather be consulted first. He said he won't ask his daughter to cover her hair until she is a teenager.

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