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Publisher\Editor Don Canaan

                      Dec. 8, 1995, V3, #223
All the News the Big Guys Missed

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Legislation Allows Couples Wider Choice of Last Name

The Knesset House Committee has prepared new legislation intended to grant newlyweds more flexibility in choosing a last name. Under the bill which will have its first reading next week, recently married couples will be permitted to continue to use their pre-marriage last name. In addition, couples will be able to elect to adopt the female's last name.

Peres Holds Meeting with Mubarak

Prime Minister Shimon Peres met Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in Cairo Thursday to discuss joint economic plans in the fields of transportation, agriculture and tourism. The two leaders decided to enhance bilateral cooperation, especially in the economic field. Peres told Mubarak that he would appoint a Major General in the IDF reserves to investigate the alleged murder of Egyptian POWs.

Peres met Wednesday with Jordan's King Hussein and promised to raise the issue of military aid during the visit. Israel will assist Jordan in the maintenance of combat jets that Amman is to receive from the U.S. as part of its military aid package.

Peres sent a letter to U.S. President Bill Clinton asking him to grant clemency to Jonathan Pollard, who was convicted of spying for Israel. Pollard has already served 10 years of a life sentence.

Israel Beginning Next Round of Prisoner Release

Israel will release 1,000 Palestinian prisoners within the next three weeks in accordance with the Interim Agreement. The release is also subject to the condition set by late Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin that no prisoners with blood on their hands be eligible for release.

The ministerial committee on prisoners, Internal Security Minister Moshe Shahal, Justice Minister David Libai and Environment Minister Yossi Sarid, decided not to release female Palestinian prisoners convicted of murder at this stage. In the coming days, security authorities will prepare a list of prisoners to be released.

Palestinians residing in the self-rule areas will be permitted to use a Palestinian passport at border crossings between Israel and Arab countries, as well as at international airports. Previously, Palestinians had to present special certificates at border crossings or Israeli travel certificates when traveling abroad at airports. The Palestinian Authority has already issued approximately 40,000 passports to residents of the Gaza Strip and Jericho.

Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasir Arafat will request permission from Peres today to build an elevated highway, estimated at $200 million, which will connect the Gaza Strip to Mount Hebron.

Sources in the Palestinian Authority said construction of the road is a high priority because it will reduce friction in the passage of Palestinians from the West Bank to the Gaza Strip. Meanwhile, Israel and the Palestinians have agreed on the opening of two safe passage routes between the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. Palestinians will be able to travel for several hours every day between the Gaza Strip and the West Bank under Israeli guard.

IDF Officer Attacked by Jewish Students at Tomb of Joseph

IDF Commander of Nablus Colonel N. had to leave the Tomb of Joseph Tuesday after dozens of students from the Tomb of Joseph Yeshivah surrounded him, and called him a "traitor" and a "murderer."

The incident began when the IDF officer arrived at the site accompanied by Palestinian counterpart Hamid Shaid Nhage as part of the transfer process between the two commanders. Deputy Defense Minister Ori Orr said he would insist that the students who attacked the IDF officer be tried in court. Samaria Regional Council Chairman Ariyeh Ofri rejected the students' insults and promised to act to prevent the recurrence of similar incidents.

Rabin Mourned During Ceremonies in Israel and New York

IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Amnon Shahak bid an emotional farewell to late Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin during a state ceremony on Mount Herzl in Jerusalem that marked the end of shloshim, the 30-day period of mourning.

In New York, the end of the mourning period was observed by a special session of the U.N. General Assembly. Israel's Ambassador to the U.N. Gad Yaacobi said Rabin was one of Israel's finest sons. "The bullet that killed Yitzhak Rabin did not kill the peace. The way to honor his memory is to continue in his path toward a new and better tomorrow."

Leah Rabin will be joined by New York Mayor Rudolph Guliani today when a portion of Second Avenue outside of Israel's New York Consulate is renamed "Yitzhak Rabin Way."

On Sunday, Leah Rabin and Prime Minister Shimon Peres will participate in a Madison Square Garden rally to express solidarity with the government and people of Israel. Vice President Al Gore will also participate in the rally, as well as actress Kathleen Turner, and Israeli singers Dudu Fisher, David Broza and Aviv Geffen.

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