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US, Iran in Talks on American Hostages
[Diary of a Vengeance Foretold] Part 30 - Aug. 1, 1988
Ludwig De Braeckeleer (ludwig)     Print Article 
Published 2008-08-02 06:06 (KST)   

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August Intelligence Summary


Sunday, Aug. 1, 1988

"We respect the wish of the PLO, the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people to secede from us in an independent Palestinian state."
--King Hussein of Jordan, Aug. 1, 1988

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Over the last week, Washington and Tehran have exchanged a few messages through a third party. The message from the US administration is said to congratulate Iran for accepting the ceasefire and to seek the help of Iranians officials to secure the safe release of the US citizens held hostage in Lebanon.

Iranian leaders have publicly said that they would use their influence over Hezbollah if the US returns Iranian assets frozen following the Islamic revolution.

Fearful that such agreement would resurrect the memories of the Iran-Contras, the Reagan administration immediately rejected such a demand. But Secretary of State George P. Shultz that he was ready to meet with Iran foreign minister Ali Akbar Velayati.

Velayati is currently in New York to discuss the ceasefire with the UN secretary general. Velayati rejected for now Shultz's proposal, arguing that he had not received the authority to engage in further negotiations.

The decision made by King Hussein of Jordan to cut his links to the West Bank has taken both Israelis and Palestinians by surprise. Neither appears to know what to make of it. At face value, it now seems that Israel has also Arafat to negotiate with.

Right-wing Israeli politicians and newspapers, however, believe that King Hussein is bluffing and only intends to demonstrate his critical role over this matter. They point out that the King has not revoked the Jordanian passports held by West Bank residents, and that he has not stopped paying the salary of the 13,000 Jordanian government employees in the West Bank.

So far, the bridges over the Jordan River remain opened. Jordanian currency is still in use. And, at least in principle, Jordanian law remains in force in the Israeli-occupied territory.

Back to the Present

The US and Libya are said to be rushing the final agreement regarding the compensation of the American relatives of the Lockerbie victims. Considering that the tragedy occurred 20 years ago, one is left wondering what reason could possibly justify such a rush. And could it be that that the same issue is causing the crown to use every possible legal trick to delay the second appeal of the lone Libyan accused of the Lockerbie bombing?
References

"Action Perplexes Arabs and Israelis," Aug. 1, 1988.

"U.S. Peace Plan in Jeopardy," Aug. 1, 1988.

"Shultz Says He Would Meet With Iranian," Aug. 1, 1988.

--

Ludwig De Braeckeleer has a Ph.D. in nuclear sciences. Ludwig teaches physics and international humanitarian law. He blogs on "The GaiaPost."
©2008 OhmyNews
Other articles by reporter Ludwig De Braeckeleer

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