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September 14, 1995 - Image 8

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The Michigan Daily, 1995-09-14

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$A - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, September 14, 1995

NATIoN/WovULD

Rwandans
find peace
is elusive
From Daily Wire Services
KIGALI, Rwanda -In the country-
side, saboteurs pull down electrical
power poles. The armymoves in to bunt
them down. There is an ambush. A
lieutenant is killed. Furious soldiers fan
into the muddy banana groves. Shoot-
ing starts. Machetes flash in the moon-
light.
Ten hours later, the crackle of gun-
fire and the cries of its victims cease.
yesterday morning, 108 men, women
and children are piled dead in three
adjacent rural villages. Sixteen other
people are gravely injured.
Peace will not give Rwanda a chance.
"The problem is,it doesn't take alot of
people to do harm," said Charles
Murigande, a Cabinet minister in
Rwanda's struggling young government.
"It is the nature of human beings that
people who want to do bad have more
commitment and energy and determina-
tion than those who want to do good."
By midday yesterday, the United Na-
tions and the world's human rights and
relief organizations were demanding:
Whowasbehindthesekillings?Fewboth-
ered with the other question: Why?
This is Rwanda, and that is why.
The fresh massacre on the western
border is grim evidence of Rwanda's
slide backward toward war. How rapid
andhow consumingthistragedy will be
is guesswork, but its likelihood is not.
Rwanda's government has an ever-
growing army, now estimated at 50,000
men and women, predominantly ethnic
Tutsis. Across its borders camps in
neighboring nations is a defeated and
increasingly restless army of ethnic
Hutus; it may also be about 50,000
strong. In between are about 2 million
peasant Hutu refugees, frozen in place
by fear of the two armies.
"One has at the back of his mind,
always, that civil war can break out
again. This country is held together by
a slender thread.... And the history of
Rwanda tells us that this slender (thread)
breaks from time to time," says
Shaharyar Khan, the U.N. special rep-
resentative to Rwanda.
The world is spending $750million a
year to feed and care for the refugees.
Another $720 million has been pledged
by developed nations to assist the
Rwandan government in rebuilding the
nation from last year's civil war - a
convulsive episode that cost 600,000
lives and left perhaps 100,000 orphans.

Refusal to extradite
Mideast suspects
creates controversy
In response, Israel hints at
delaying Palestinians' release

AP PHOTO
Pales Ortute (center) embraces a supporter after askIng the U.N. women's conference to protect lesbians from dlscrdmhumon.
t UN. women's conference,
gay iights topic sparks conflict

BEIJING (AP)-Never before has a
U.N. document tackled the topic of
homosexuality. Lesbians are now won-
dering whether this international
women's meeting will also end with
silence on the subject.
Heading into the final full day of the
Fourth World Conference on Women,
delegates were still divided over the
issue of asking for a ban on discrimina-
tion against lesbians, conference orga-
nizers said yesterday.
Delegates from 189 countries worked
into the early hours of the morning on
the conference platform, a sweeping
call to improve the lives of women
worldwide. The full conference is to
vote on the platform tomorrow before
the meeting ends..
The conference platform is not le-
gally binding, but is expected to serve
as a guide to governments.
Latelast night, negotiators reaffirmed
a woman's right to sexual freedom. But
23 countries-all predominantly Mus-
lim or Roman Catholic - either said
they would lodge objections or issue
statements with their own interpreta-
tions.
The provision calls for women to be
able to make sexual choices without
"violence, coercion or discrimination."

-The drfficulty
lies in the fact
thatit's the first
time this is being
discussed at the
UN. level."
-- Therese Gastaut
Conference spokeswoman
Delegates say the phrasing is meant to
stretch across a range of cultures and
situations, covering girls subjected to
ritual genital mutilation as well as bat-
tered wives.
Several nations said they might lift
their objections to the wording if a
footnote were added, saying that all
issues of reproductive health must be
guided by religious, cultural and tradi-
tional values. Critics argue that these
phrases are often used to restrict human
rights.
During nearly two weeks of talks,
participants say many previously taboo
subjects have come out into the open.

One of them is homosexuality.
But even if delegates are ready to talk
about lesbian rights, they might not be
prepared to act on them yet.
"I wouldn't say (I'm) optimistic,"
conference secretary-general Gertrude
Mongella said when asked about pros-
pects for the provision's approval. She
said she wanted to wait for the outcome
of the talks.
Earlier, conference spokeswoman
Therese Gastaut said the subject was
uncharted territory at such a gather-
ing.
"The difficulty lies in the fact that
it's the first time this is being dis-
cussed at the U.N. level," she told
reporters. "All the implications have
to be taken into account ... they're
very intricate."
Earlier in the day, negotiators re-
solved a dispute over women's inherit-
ance rights, agreeing that governments
should enforce legislation that guaran-
tees both sexes "equal rights to succes-
sion and equal rights to inherit."
Delegates from many African coun-
tries made inheritance rights one of
their top priorities at the conference.
In some traditional societies, women
are left with nothing if their husbands
die.

From Daily Wire Services
JERUSALEM - Government offi-
cials charged yesterday that the Pales-
tinian Authority is violating the spirit of
its peace agreement with Israel by re-
fusing to extradite men suspected of
involvement in attacks against Israel.
On a day when right-wing Jewish
demonstrators opposed to the peace
accord clashed with police outside Prime
Minister Yitzhak Rabin's home and
tried to block intersections across the
country, ministers fumed that the Pal-
estinians are embarrassing the govern-
ment by thwarting Israel's extradition
requests.
"I view with concern the fact that the
Palestinian Authority is exploiting the
agreement (in order to) give refuge to
all of the murderers, and to thereby
create an image that it supports the
murder of Jews," said Justice Minister
David Liba'i.
He hinted that Israel may hold up the
release of some 5,000 Palestinian pris-
oners until the Authority begins extra-
diting suspects.
Liba'i's comments were prompted
by the sudden conviction Monday in a
Palestinian court in Jericho oftwo cous-
ins, Yussef and Shaher Ra'ii, who were
accused of"incitement." Each was sen-
tenced to seven years of hard labor.
Israel cried foul, noting that it had
said Sunday it wanted to extradite the
cousins on suspicion of involvement in
the July 18 murder of a pair of Israelis
who were hiking in the Judaean desert.
"What we saw in Jericho was a trial
to stop extradition, but not a real trial,"
Liba'i told Israel Radio yesterday, after
the Cabinet held a special session to
discuss the issue. "We cannot accept a
situation where the Palestinians set their
own parameters for the war against
terrorism and force us to accept them."
Jericho is the only West Bank town
now fully controlled by the Palestinian
Authority. According to the Israelis,
the Ra'ii cousins, suspected members
of the militant Population Front for the
Liberation of Palestine, fled there
shortly after the double murder. A third

suspect, arrested by the Israeli General
Security Services in the West Bank a
month ago, allegedly confessed to com-
mitting the murders and implicated the
Ra'ii cousins.
A similarcase occurred in July, when
a Palestinian court in Jericho sentenced
Abdel-Majid Dudein, and Rushdi
Khatib, suspected members of the Is-
lamic militant group Hamas, to 12 years
in prison on charges of undermining
Palestinian security.
That sentence was handed down a
day after Israel requested Dudein and
Khatib's extradition for allegedly par-
ticipating in the July bombing of an bus
in Jerusalem.
Israel protested Dudein and Khatib's
quick trial, and Liba'i formally requested
of Palestinian Minister of Justice Freih
Abu Medein that seven Palestinians now
believed to be in Gaza or Jericho be
extradited to Israel. Abu Medein said the
requests would be reviewed.
Some Palestinian officials subse-
quently said they will never comply
with the extradition requests.
"We have reached a decision, and it
has been taken in our highest echelons,
of course, agreed to by (PLO) Chair-
man (Yasser) Arafat," said Mohammad
Dahlan, head ofthe Palestinian Preven-
tive Security Service in Gaza. "We shall
not extradite to Israel our people, even
if they are Hamas people'who are
wanted," Dahlan told the newspaper
Yediot Aharonot.
According to the Cairo, Egypt, ac-
cord governing Palestinian self-rule in
Gaza and Jericho, the Palestinian Au-
thority may extradite any Palestinian
whom Israel suspects of having com-
mitted a crime on its territory. How-
ever, the agreement also says that the
Palestinians have the right to try the
suspects in Palestinian courts and have
them serve out jail terms in Palestinian
prisons before extraditing them.
Palestinians argue that the agreement
is unfair, because it specifies that Israel
will extradite only non-Israelis who
commit crimes on Palestinian-con-
trolled territory, then flee to Israel.

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