HA’ARETZ 1. Main obstacle to disengagement removed. LAPID FOLDS: SHINUI TO SUPPORT BUDGET IN EXCHANGE FOR NIS 700 MILLION. 2. IN 90TH MINUTE IN RAMAT GAN, HOPE WAS LOST AND THEN ABBAS SUAN ARRIVED. 3. SHARON TO TRY TO FORMULATE WORDING ON CONSTRUCTION IN SETTLEMENTS WITH BUSH. 4. DRAFT GOVERNMENT LAW: AUTHORITY OF RABBINICAL COURTS TO BE EXTENDED TO OVERSEAS. 5. UN REPORT: ASSAD “PHYSICALLY THREATENED” RAFIK HARIRI. Report strengthens suspicion that Syria assassinated former Lebanese PM last month. 6. IDF CONSIDERING REMOVING EXTREMIST SETTLERS FROM TERRITORIES. Purim celebrated at Yitzhar by stoning Palestinian village and calling soldiers, “Nazis.” HATZOFEH 1. NIS 700 million “buys” Shinui. LAPID FOLDS. In meeting between PM Ariel Sharon and MKs Lapid and Poraz last night at Shikmim farm, it was agreed that Shinui would support budget. Moment before entering meeting, the two promised: Our opposition to budget is strong. Last week, Lapid disparaged those who supported budget. Knesset factions united last night in jeering at Lapid. 2. US: NO UNDERSTANDING WITH ISRAEL ON ISSUE OF SETTLEMENT BLOCS. Secy. of State Rice: Expanding construction in Maaleh Adumim contravenes US policy. Her remarks contradict Kurtzer’s denial of statements attributed to him in Yediot Ahronot that there are no understandings between Israel and US on issue of settlement blocs. 3. MINISTERS LIVNAT AND KATZ: REDISCUSS DISENGAGEMENT PLAN. Uzi Landau: Cat out of the bag – Sharon leading towards partition of Jerusalem. 4. YESHA COUNCIL CONCERNED OVER PLANTED AGENTS PROVOCATEURS. Council Chairman Bentzi Lieberman: “I am concerned that Sharon government is trying to plant agents provocateurs in Yesha Council in order to de-legitimize our struggle.” 5. ISRAEL LIKELY TO AGREE TO RELEASE JORDANIAN PRISONERS – IN EXCHANGE FOR THEIR BEING IMPRISONED IN JORDAN. 6. ISRAEL AND IRELAND FINISH 1:1. MA’ARIV 1. Shinui folds, budget will pass. LAPID GIVES IN. NIS 700 million – this is sum that Sharon paid Shinui in exchange for its support on budget Wednesday. 2. SHARON: “THEY TRIED TO HURT OUR RELATIONS WITH US.” Reacted to inaccurate quotation of Ambassador Kurtzer’s remarks. 3. IN THE 90TH MINUTE. Dramatic goal by Abbas Suan in last seconds saves national team from losing to Ireland. Next obstacle en route to World Cup – France on Wednesday. YEDIOT AHRONOT 1. Shinui to support budget – in exchange for NIS 700 million for students and culture. LAPID SAVES SHARON. Budget expected to pass this week – after Shinui Chairman “climbed down from the tree.” Gave in on his main demands: Entry into government and cancellation of funds to haredim. Right wing accuses: Lapid sold his principles. 2. In the 90th minute: WHAT A GOAL! Ramat Gan stadium: In 90th minute, Ireland was ahead 1:0. Abbas Suan scored amazing goal – and achieved last-minute draw for Israel. On Wednesday: Israel vs. France in fateful World Cup qualifier. 3. In wake of Yediot Ahronot expos?: SHARON: ALL UNDERSTANDINGS WITH BUSH VALID. Sharon responded last night to storm caused by Ambassador Kurtzer’s remarks on “lack of understandings” between Israel and US on issue of settlement blocs. ______________________________ SUMMARY OF EDITORIALS FROM THE HEBREW PRESS Yediot Ahronot believes that the political haggling over the 2005 budget, which must be passed by 31.3.05 or the Government will be deemed to have fallen, is, “a circus,” and asserts that it is not at all clear where the money will be found to finance the many promises that Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has had to make in order to secure the budget’s passage. Hatzofeh dismisses both US Ambassador to Israel Daniel Kurtzer’s claim that he was misquoted when he was alleged to have said that there were no understandings between Israel and the US regarding settlement blocs in Judea and Samaria, and the meaning that Prime Minister Ariel Sharon attributes to his 14.4.04 letter from US President George W. Bush. BPI-info