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The World

June 19, 1989

Syria has freed 185 Palestinian guerrillas and allied Sunni Muslim fighters from prisons in an apparent move toward reconciliation with Palestine Liberation Organization leader Yasser Arafat, Arab sources said. The guerrillas--145 members of Arafat's Fatah movement and 40 members of the Sunni Muslim Tawhid faction--were taken to the Syrian-controlled north Lebanon city of Tripoli and released, the sources said. Neither Damascus nor the PLO would comment on the report. The move was seen as part of behind-the-scenes moves by Syrian President Hafez Assad and Arafat to heal a six-year-old rift.

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