Saudi Arabia - Issue 176 - 21/Jul/1986

It is, perhaps, too soon to know whether King Hussein's recent visit to Saudi Arabia did anything to alter the kingdom's traditional full support for Yasser Arafat's leadership of the PLO. Hussein went to Taif to visit King Fahd immediately after closing the 25 Jordanian offices of the Fatah wing of the PLO and expelling Khalil al Wazir, the senior PLO official in Jordan and Arafat's military aide. The closures and expulsion were explained as a reaction to PLO criticism of Jordanian policy in the Middle East. More likely, however, is that Jordan was using the criticism as an opportunity to put further pressure on the PLO to get rid of Arafat and choose a leadership that would better suit Jordanian policy.

African Energy Gulf States Newsletter