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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Aug. 24, 1999)
Withdrawal, prisoner issue still in negotiations
JERUS ALEM (AP) - Blaming ment - except for prisoner releases Netanyahu signed the agreement with Foreign Minister David Levy and I hope Mr. Levy will in the future
each other for creating a crisis atmos- and the timetable for Israel’s with- Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and charged that the Palestinians are ere- refrain from such statements,” he told
phere, Israel and the Palestinians held drawal. carried out the first phase, then sus- ating “an artificial crisis” and trying The Associated Press,
ta s Monday over releasing prison- Under the Wye River accord, pended the process, charging that the to involve the United States in the Israel says Palestinian prisoners
ers and transferring control of West signed last October, Israel should Palestinians were not doing their part, negotiations. He told Israel radio the are to be released Sept. 1 and Oct. 8,
Bank territory. . turn over control of some West Bank Ehud Barak defeated Netanyahu Palestinians are trying to force Israel but who will be freed remains in dis
A day before leaving for land to the Palestinians and release in Israel’s May election and.pledged to go beyond the signed agreement pute. The Israelis refuse to release
Washington to meet Secretary of 750 prisoners, and the Palestinians to implement the Wye accord. But he “to attain more than what is written.” Palestinians involved in killing
State Madeleine Albright, chief should take steps to control extrem- has asked Arafat to agree to some Erekat charged that Levy was at Israelis, while the Palestinians say
Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat ists and stop terror attacks on Israel. changes. The Palestinians have fault for talking about a crisis, only security prisoners and not com
said negotiators are close to an agree- Former Prime Minister Benjamin refused. “Everyone is working in good faith, mon criminals should count.
Bret s wrath leaves
CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (AP)
Texans streamed back to their mostly
unscathed homes Monday after
Hurricane Bret threaded the needle
between Corpus Christi and
Brownsville and pushed through open
ranch land without causing a single
By morning, the strongest hurri
cane to hit Texas in nearly 20 years had
weakened into a tropical storm.
“We’re thrilled out of our minds, is
what we are,” said teacher Rita Clark,
whose home had only a downed tree
limb in the yard. “It was nice enough to
fall gently against my house.”
Residents to the west in Laredo
braced for flooding, but by Monday
night the threat seemed to have dimin
ished. All Laredo businesses were
ordered to close at 6 p.m. Monday, and
the Laredo International Airport and all
three bridges linking Texas with Mexico
Bret moved slowly across Texas’ tip
with drenching rain of 8 to 12 inches.
About 3,500 people on both sides of the
U.S.-Mexico border left their homes for
“I urge all Texans in the affected
areas to take the threat of flooding seri
ously, to continue to pay dose attention
to this storm and to follow the advice
and directions of local officials,” Gov.
George W. Bush said.
By Monday, Bret’s top winds had
decreased to near 40 mph with higher
gusts. It was expected to weaken further
as it continued its inland trek toward the
Rio Grande and Mexico.
Bret had been rated a potent
Category 4 storm when it approached
over the Gulf of Mexico with 140 mph
winds, and the National Weather
Service had likened it to Hurricane
Andrew, which devastated heavily pop
ulated south Florida in 1992. Thousands
of tourists and residents fled inland.
But when Bret finally came ashore
at 6 p.m. Sunday, its winds were down
to 125 mph. And instead of hitting
Corpus Christi (population of300,000)
or Brownsville (132,000), which are
160 miles apart, it crossed midway
between the two cities like a fodtball
sailing through the goalposts.
Mayor Fil Esquivel of Kingsville
said the storm “kicked a field goal.”
Bret hit sparsely populated Kenedy
County, which is the home of the storied
King Ranch and has far more cows
(tens of thousands) than people (458).
Widespread power outages were
reported, but damage was considered
light in many places.
“You might call it the great escape. I
think the city of Corpus Christi is very
fortunate,” said Mayor Loyd Neal.
The King Ranch reported downed
trees but no livestock losses on one of
the country’s largest cattle operations,
founded in 1853 by riverboat captain
Richard King. Ranch President Jack
Hunt said all 300 people who live and
work on 825,000 acres tending 60,000
head of cattle were evacuated before the
storm hit. The cattle were left to fend for
“About all you can do is open the
gates and make sure the cattle can go
where they need to go,” Hunt said.
Hurricane damage was substantial
in Falfurrias, a town of 5,800 about 60
miles southwest of Corpus Christi,
Mayor Michael Guerra said. The wind
ripped roofs from homes and business
es and up to 90 percent of the town had
no electricity. Major damage also was
reported in Port Mansfield, about 50
miles north of Brownsville.
A tornado that was spun off by Bret
oeiween Kocicpori ana Aransas rass
destroyed a mobile home and damaged
several other buildings.
Three of the four downed high volt
age lines that bring electricity to South
Texas were functioning again Monday,
and the fourth was expected to resume
operation today. The number of cus
tomers without electricity dropped from
16,000 Monday morning to 11,000 in
the afternoon, the Public Utility
On Monday, the state Health
Department warned of the possibility of
dengue fever, a viral illness spread by
President Clinton issued a disaster
declaration Sunday night for seven
counties. Hurricane Allen, another
Category 4 storm, struck roughly the
same area in 1980, causing $55 million
On Padre Island, lumber was found
blown around from construction sites
along with a barbecue pit.
“I expected the tidal surge to be
more. I expected to find flooded car
pet,” said Scott Belcher, who lives on
Padre Island and returned to discover
his home was just fine.
After all the warnings, the actual
arrival of the storm “was kind of a let
- down,” admitted his wife, Tisha.
oudan accepts plan to
cease civil war battling
CAIRO, Egypt (AP) - Sudan’s gov
ernment has accepted a plan to end the
African country’s 16-year civil war,
Egypt’s news agency reported Monday.
It was not possible to obtain an
immediate reaction from the rebel
Sudan People’s Liberation Army, the
umbrella opposition National
Democratic Alliance, based in Eritrea.
The rebels have been battling gov
ernment forces in southern Sudan.
Nearly two million people have died
in the war and attendant famines. The
rebels, who draw support from the
Christians and animist majority in the
south, seek autonomy from Muslim
majority northern Sudan.
The alliance groups the southern
rebels with northern opposition groups
opposed to the military-backed govern
ment of Gen. Omar el-Bashir.
Egypt’s Middle East News Agency
said the Sudanese government had
accepted the Libyan-Egyptian plan,
under which the warring sides would
call a permanent cease-fire, attend a
national peace conference and stop
mounting media campaigns against
The government and the rebels have
proclaimed a series of three-month
cease-fires since last October. The gov
ernment’s latest truce is scheduled to
end in October.
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