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February 14, 1986 - Image 12

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1986-02-14

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

-12 Friday, February 14, 1986



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Israel, Egypt Continue
Talks On Taba Dispute

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Jerusalem (JTA) — Israeli
diplomats returning from
Cairo last Sunday after the
latest round of talks on the
Taba border dispute reported
an unexpectedly warm and
friendly atmosphere among
the Israeli and Egyptian work-
ing groups dealing with both
Taba and the parallel issues of
normalization of relations bet-
ween the two countries. Never-
theless, thorny problems re-
main to be resolved.
The Israeli team is headed
by Gen. (Res.) Avraham
Tamir, Director General of the
Prime Minister's Office, and
David Kimche, Director Gen-
eral of the Foreign Ministry.
Their talks were held in Cairo
and will resume shortly in
Herzliyah, Israel. These are
the first negotiations since
Israel's Inner Cabinet ac-
cepted in principle last
January 13 Egypt's demand to
submit the Taba dispute to in-
ternational arbitration.
Egyptian Foreign Minister
Ismet Abdel Meguid told
Tamir and Kimche that all
restrictions on trade with
Israeli firms have been lifted
and that he anticipated an ear-
ly meeting between the Egyp-
tian and Israeli tourism minis-
ters to discuss ways to boost
tourist traffic between the two
Meguid also informed the
Israeli officials that the full
court judgement in the Ras
Burka case will be conveyed to
the Israel Embassy in Cairo as
soon as it is signed by Defense
Minister Abu-Ghazalia.
The document is the court
record of the trial and convic-
tion of an Egyptian soldier,
Sulieman Khatar, who, on
October 1, 1985, machine-

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gunned to death seven Israeli
tourists on the beach at Ras
Burka in eastern Sinai. He was
sentenced to life imprisonment
but hanged himself in a
military hospital.
Israel had demanded the full
report of the inquiry commis-
sion set up by Cairo to inves-
tigate the killings and the
refusal of the Egyptian gov-
ernment to turn this over
worsened the strained rela-
tions with Egypt. But Israel
now is apparently willing to ac-
cept the 23-page court judge-
ment while reserving the right
to request further material
should this prove incomplete.
The Egyptians have agreed.
Israel is also asking Egypt to
pay reparations to the families
of the seven victims, four of
whom were children.
An unrelated issue that
could disturb Israeli-Egyptian
relations is the death sentence
imposed by a Cairo court on an
Israeli citizen, Yosef Taban of
Ashdod, who was convicted of
smuggling 1.25 kilograms of
heroin into Egypt. Taban was
arrested at Cairo airport last
August, enroute home from
Bombay and reportedly told
the Egyptian authorities the
heroin was intended for sale in
Israel is now expected to ask
Egypt to extradite Taban.
Police Minister Haim Barley
expressed hope the Egyptians
would do this but has not said
whether a decision has been
made to request his extradi-
tion. Taban is now on death
row in a Cairo prison awaiting
confirming of his sentence by
the Council of Muftis, Moslem
religious leaders. He has
recourse to appeal to higher
Egyptian courts.

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Members of the "35s," a Jerusalem-based women's group supporting
Soviet Jewry, dressed as Prisoners of Conscience recently to mark
United Nations Human Rights Day.

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