A Chronology of U.S.-Middle East Relations

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Factsfor Your Files

Jan. 1: As Israeli President Moshe Katsav and Prime Minister Ariel Sharon publicly disagreed on policy toward the Palestinians, Israeli tanks raided a village near Jenin.

*Egyptian state television launched a Hebrew-language program.

*Iran denied U.S. allegations of ties with al-- Qaeda and Osama bin Laden.

*U.S. Marines secured an abandoned Taliban position west of Kandahar.

*Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf cut support to non-indigenous Islamic groups fighting in Kashmir.

Jan. 2: The Pentagon announced that Taliban intelligence chief Qari Ahmadullah had been killed by U.S. bombing on Dec. 27.

*The World Jewish Congress announced a reorganization to fight global terrorism.

*Following an East Jerusalem press conference, Palestinian human rights activist Dr. Mustafa Barghouti was arrested twice and beaten.

*Israeli Prime Minister Sharon announced he would seek re-election in 2003.

*The first multinational peacekeeping hoops arrived in Afghanistan.

*As Pakistani and Indian foreign ministers met in Nepal, suspected Islamists killed one policeman and wounded 24 in Kashmir.

Jan. 3: U.S. envoy Gen. Anthony Zinni returned to the Middle East.

*Israel seized in international waters the ship Karine-A, allegedly carrying 50 tons of Iranian-made weapons to Palestine.

*Israeli tanks withdrew from Jenin, but continued to encircle Yasser Arafat's Ramallah headquarters.

*As U.S. warplanes bombed an alleged al-- Qaeda compound near Khost in eastern Afghanistan, Kabul's interim government released more than 3,000 Taliban prisoners.

*Pakistan arrested the former Taliban ambassador, Mullah Abdul Salam Zaeef.

*The State Department said the U.S. had not decided on anti-terror action in Somalia.

Jan. 4: While U.S. envoy Anthony Zinni met with Israeli Prime Minister Sharon, Israeli tanks and troops raided the West Bank village of Tel, killing a Palestinian policeman.

*Syria took its seat on the U.N. Security Council.

*A special forces soldier became the first U.S. combat casualty in Afghanistan.

Jan. 5: Leaving a note expressing affinity with Osama bin Laden, a Florida teen crashed a small plane into a Tampa office building.

*Israel banned Yasser Arafat from traveling to Bethlehem for Orthodox Christmas.

Jan. 6: U.S. military police were sent to prepare a prison camp for captured Taliban and al-Qaeda forces in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

*As Prime Minister Sharon accused Yasser Arafat of personally ordering weapons found on the Karine-A, and the PA arrested six members of Islamic Jihad in Jenin, U.S. envoy Gen. Zinni left Israel.

*Uzbek military intelligence officers told nine visiting U.S. senators that Osama bin Laden had escaped into Pakistan.

*Indian and Israeli officials met in Jerusalem to discuss anti-terror techniques.

Jan. 7: U.S. President George W Bush urged Pakistani President Musharraf to crack down on Islamists.

*Nine U.S. senators arrived in Afghanistan, to meet with interim leader Hamid Karzai and U.N. envoy Lakhdar Brahimi.

*Turkey accused Saudi Arabia of destroying Ottoman cultural heritage by tearing down the Al Ajyad Castle to build a hotel complex for pilgrims to Mecca.

*Bosnia asked the tJ.S. to extradite former Ambassador to the U.N. Muhamed Sacirbey to face charges of embezzlement.

*Singapore officials said 15 alleged al-Qaeda members it had arrested planned to bomb the U.S. embassy and American businesses. E]The Shanghai Cooperation Organization-- China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan-stated that Afghanistan should be free of foreign influence.

Jan. 8: U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld supported Israel's seizure of the Karine-A, and the State Department called allegations of Palestinian weapons smuggling credible. …