News from Beirut August  19  1998 ...Search

Resistance operation kills one Israeli soldier and wounds three others

The Lebanese Resistance today announced that one of its units detonated a mortar bomb on the road leading to the Sojod Israeli outpost targeting an Israeli patrol which was passing by. The resistance added in a statement direct hits were scored in the operation. It also said resistance men later fought a battle with Israeli soldiers on the same road adding two Israeli helicopters were seen in the area to evacuate the casualties. Israeli sources confirmed the death of one Israeli soldier and the injury of three others in a bomb explosion on the road leading to the Sojod outpost.

Security sources in Marjayoon also reported the resistance shelled Israeli positions in Barasheet and Qalaat Shkeef.

Intense Israeli shelling inflicts damage in civilian properties

Israeli warplanes today raided the Mleeta Hill in Iqlim Al-Touffah following early morning shelling which targeted different villages in the area. Intensive flights were performed over the Western Bekaa, Hasbayya, Iqlim Al-Touffah and Nabatieh.

Early this morning, heavy Israeli shelling targeted the outskirts of Lowaizeh, Sojod, Rayhan, Mleeta, Gargoua, Ain Qana, Ain Bouswar, Mazraat Okmata and Jabal Safi in the Iqlim Al-Touffah Mountain Ridges. A number of fires blazed in these areas as a result of Israeli shelling. The attacks on Gargoua damaged the house of Lebanese civilian Mahumd Mokalled and a civilian car belonging to Ali Jamil Mokalled. Shells also targeted villages in the Western Sector, namely Shakra, Ayta Al-Jabal, Haddatha, and Baraasheet. The car of civilian, Hussein Nasser was destroyed in the town of Haddatha.

More Israeli allied militiamen rebel against their command

Sources inside the occupied zone today reported that a number of Israeli allied militiamen rebelled and tried to raid the militia's military barracks of Bint Jbeil during the last two days after surrounding it. The head of the militia aided by Israeli forces had to intervene in a bid to stop the rebels who all come from the village of Qlayaat. The sources added that the area commanded by the allied officer Taleb Sibleen also witnessed a rebellion. This comes after a campaign of detention carried out by the militia's command against members in the militia who had been trying to flee via the Naqoura harbor.

Lebanon and Syria to boost agricultural, industrial, and business ties

Prime Minister Rafik Al-Hariri and his Syrian counterpart Mahmud Zohbi today headed in Damascus a meeting of the joint Lebanese-Syrian agricultural committee to discuss issues related to agricultural cooperation and the exchange of agricultural products between the two countries.

Meanwhile, the Lebanese cabinet is expected to issue a decree whereby custom duties on Syrian industrial products are to be reduced by 25%. This will be applied starting January 1999. Syrian President Hafez Al-Assad is expected to sign a similar decree. Acting Finance Minister Fouad Sanyoura told the Lebanese daily An-Nahar the project would encourage Lebanese industries to increase their production capabilities and enhance the quality of products.

Also in Damascus, the Syrian-Lebanese Council for Businessmen is expected to hold a meeting after tomorrow to discuss the possibility of establishing a financial institution with a 10-million-US-dollar capital divided equally between Lebanon and Syria.

Hrawi holds official meetings at Baabda

President Elias Al-Hrawi today held separate meetings with deputies Jamil Shammas and Emile Nawfal. Also at Baabda, Hrawi met Lebanese expatriate Hassan Hojeij who thanked the president and the Lebanese Republic for their hospitable reception of Gabon's President Omar Bongo during his recent state visit to Lebanon. Also among the visitors of the president today is Najib Zaher, a member in the Continental African Council.

Berri reportedly stresses no personal conflict with Hariri

House Speaker Nabih Berri today reportedly said there was no personal conflict between him and Premier Rafik Al-Hariri. He told his visitors at parliament their points of views on some issues are different.

House Speaker Berri this morning met Lebanon's ambassador in Pakistan Mohammed Al-Hajjar. He later held talks with the third vice governor of Lebanon's Central Bank Marwan Nsouli. At noon, Berri received the president of the constitutional council, judge Amin Nassar and deputy Najah Wakim.

Boueiz receives Moldavian Acting Foreign Minister

Foreign Minister Faris Boueiz today received Acting Moldavian Foreign Minister who is currently on a three-day official visit to Beirut. The Moldavian official had earlier held talks with the secretary general of the foreign ministry Zafer Al-Hassan. Discussions centered on ways to boost bilateral ties between the two countries. The Moldavian official told reporters he held talks with Lebanese foreign ministry officials on the possibility of signing an agreement between the two countries to avoid double taxation. He added his country is interested in attracting Arab investors to Moldavian markets.

Arab football championship opens this evening in Beirut

Under the patronage of Prime Minister Rafik Al-Hariri, the ninth Arab championship in football opens this evening in Beirut. The event is hosted by the Nijmeh Club. It is also supervised by the Arab Footaball Union. Eight Arab football teams are expected to participate in the championship. The event will be attended by a number of Arab dignitaries in the Olympic Stadium of the Sports City. All preparations to host the event were recently completed by the higher organizing committee of the championship.

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