Newsletter : 0fax0622.txt
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>JN June 22, 2000, Vol. 8, No. 107
Clinton Cites "National Security" on U.S. Embassy Relocation
President Clinton has once again delayed the relocation of the U.S.
Embassy to Jerusalem. The Jerusalem Embassy Relocation Act of 1995
requires that the embassy be moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, but
it also gives the president the option to waive the move for
six-month periods. Clinton has invoked this option several times.
A Presidential Determination issued after the decision stated that
the delay is "necessary to protect the national security interests
of the United States."
Israel Names a Date for Trilateral Summit
Israel suggested a trilateral summit to begin on July 5, to include
President Bill Clinton, Prime Minister Ehud Barak and Palestinian
leader Yasir Arafat. The summit would be used to advance the
stalled talks and hopefully to complete the long overdue
framework agreement for the final status talks.
Officials in the Prime Minister's Office have indicated the
administration feels that the continuation of the talks on the
current level may not yield the desired results and the summit may
be the only solution to permit the completion of the framework
The resumption of talks scheduled for this week was delayed as well
with Secretary of State Madeleine Albright arriving in Israel next
week. She, and special envoy Dennis Ross will be working to narrow
the existing gaps prior to the July trilateral summit.
Talks last week at the Bolling and Andrews Air Force Bases failed
to yield results with both sides placing the blame on the other.
Negotiators returned to Israel without any news of significant
progress. The main points of contention between Israel and the PLO
Authority remains and there is no immediate solution on the
The PA is demanding the release of hundreds of terrorists with
Israel having approved the release of three. The PA is seeking the
return of so-called refugees, a demand being rejected outright by
Barak. The prime minister last week also ordered negotiators not
to even permit discussion on the issue of the future of Jerusalem,
explaining the talks were not progressing enough to raise the
Analysts explain that PA officials are watching the Israeli
political scene carefully, following Tuesday's resignation of the
Shas ministers. If the resignations are not retracted, Barak may
find himself without a majority this morning at 7:45 (EDT), when
the letters of resignation take effect.
Iranian Weapons Plans Could Benefit From Oil Price Hikes
Senior Israeli analysts cautioned that the sharp rise in
international oil prices over the last few months will
facilitate Iranian attempts to intensify its nuclear weapons and
long-range ballistic missiles programs, Haaretz reported.
Analysts say that Iran has a guaranteed budget for its nuclear
weapons program and that the budget remains the same even when the
national economy hits low points. Analysts project that the
increase in revenues from oil exports will expedite Iran's efforts
to arm itself with non-conventional weapons.
In addition, it is believed that these increased revenues will
enable Iran to provide extensive support to radical Islamic groups
outside its borders.
IDF Orders West Bank Communities to Prepare for War
As the intelligence community continues to receive reports pointing
to the likelihood of increased attacks from Islamic terrorist
organizations, a decision was made to fortify the Jewish
communities throughout the West Bank, including stocking different
weapons and ammunition.
Intelligence officials predict a renewed wave of violence, which
will surpass the Nakba warfare seen in May. Experts predict the
violence will begin almost immediately as a result of the lack of
progress in talks in Washington last week between Israeli and PLO
Although military officials report that at present the number of
troops deployed throughout the territories has not changed, there
is a different focus and use of the existing manpower. First
response units composed of military personnel are being deployed in
larger communities, in the hope of reducing response time to the
Yesha areas in the event of attack.
The military will also be distributing rubber-coated steel bullets
and teargas grenades; to be added to the Yesha weapons storehouses.
These items are being added in the hope they may be useful in
repelling threats to the community which do not endanger human life
and may buy time until IDF units are able to respond to a
The decision for the non-lethal weaponry is based on the southern
Lebanon scenario, learning from the May troop withdrawal which
resulted in demonstrations and large numbers of Lebanese gathering
around the border fence. Weapons storehouses are also being updated
and the frequency of training exercises for reservists living in
Yesha communities is being increased.
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