The Syrian army has released the first of an estimated 100 Palestinians it has captured in fighting in the Lebanese civil war.
GV PAN: Prisoners in truck along road into Palestinian area.
SV: Prisoners in another truck pass.
SV: Prisoners unloading belongings from truck.
SV: Prisoners being met by relatives and friends (2 shots)
SV AND CU: reconstruction work on town of Bhamdoun. (4 shots)
CU AND SV: Telephone lines being repaired. (2 shots)
CU AND SV: broken water mains being repaired. (2 shots)
SV: damaged road in front of shop
GV EXTERIOR: of Kamal Jumblatt's mountain residence.
SV: Arab League and Egyptian officials enter house. (2 shots)
SV: Kamal Jumblatt talking to officials (Jumblatt wearing dark suit)
SVS: Jumblatt and officials talking.
CU: General Ghonneim to others.
SVS: Jumblatt and others talking. (2 shots)
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: The Syrian army has released the first of an estimated 100 Palestinians it has captured in fighting in the Lebanese civil war.
SYNOPSIS: The 33 prisoners were released at the truce line in the Lebanese mountains and driven to the nearby resort town of Aley. They were driven across the truce lines in Palestinian commando trucks. They were the first prisoners released by the Syrian Government since a ceasefire ended most of the fighting in Lebanon last month. The prisoners were greeted by ???ozens of cheering and weeping friends and relatives in Aley.
In another resort town, Bhamdoun, work has started on repairing the damage caused during the civil war. Bhamdoun was the centre of fierce fighting recently, and is now under Syrian control. The town's roads, torn up by heavy shelling, are being made useable again, and workmen are also repairing telephone lines and broken water mains. Shops in Bhamdoun are reopening, and people are returning to town to live. Local officials are hopeful all will be ready for visitors next summer.
Meanwhile, the leader of Lebanon's coalition of left-wing parties, Mr. Kamal Jumblatt, was meeting officials of the Arab League at his residence in the Lebanese Mountains. Included in the delegation were General Ghonneim and Egyptian diplomat, Dr. Hassan Sabri el-Kholi.
Mr. Jumblatt said he welcomed the deployment of the Arab League peace-keeping force and called on combatants to stop artillery bombardments and thus spare innocent lives. However, Mr. Jumblatt said he was unhappy about the appointment of Colonel Ahmed al-Haji, a Lebanese officer, as head of the force.