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DATE=3/8/99 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT NUMBER=2-246371 TITLE=COHEN / MIDEAST (L) BYLINE=SCOTT BOBB DATELINE=CAIRO CONTENT= VOICED AT: INTRO: U-S DEFENSE SECRETARY WILLIAM COHEN SAYS THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT IS PREPARED TO SHARE ITS MONITORING OF IRAQI AND IRANIAN MISSILES TESTS WITH NATIONS IN THE GULF REGION. V-O-A MIDDLE EAST CORRESPONDENT SCOTT BOBB REPORTS SECRETARY COHEN ANNOUNCED THE PROPOSAL DURING A VISIT TO THE UNITED ARAB EMIRATES, THE FOURTH STOP ON HIS NINE-NATION TOUR OF THE MIDDLE EAST. TEXT: DEFENSE SECRETARY COHEN ANNOUNCED THE PROPOSAL MONDAY IN ABU DHABI, SAYING HE THINKS IT WILL BE BENEFICIAL TO ALL THE GULF STATES. THE U-S OFFICIAL SAID UNDER THE PROPOSAL, COMPUTER TERMINALS SET UP IN EACH PARTICIPATING COUNTRY WOULD RECEIVE INFORMATION FROM U-S DEFENSE SATELLITES. THE SATELLITES USE INFRARED SENSORS TO DETECT HEAT FROM MISSILE LAUNCHES. U-S OFFICIALS SAID THEY ARE PROPOSING TO SHARE INFORMATION ON MISSILE TESTS, BUT IT MIGHT BE POSSIBLE TO ALSO TRANSMIT WARNINGS OF ACTUAL MISSILE ATTACKS. IRAN AND IRAQ ARE REPORTEDLY DEVELOPING MEDIUM-RANGE MISSILES THAT COULD STRIKE VARIOUS COUNTRIES IN THE REGION. ISRAEL HAS AN EVEN MORE DEVELOPED MISSILE PROGRAM. DEFENSE SECRETARY COHEN IS TOURING THE MIDDLE EAST TRYING TO RALLY SUPPORT FOR THE U-S POLICY OF CONTAINMENT OF IRAQ. THE U-S DEFENSE SECRETARY MET MONDAY WITH THE LEADER OF THE UNITED ARAB EMIRATES, SHEIKH ZAYED IBN SULTAN AL-NAHAYAN, WHOSE GOVERNMENT HAS CRITICIZED THE U-S AND BRITISH AIR STRIKES AGAINST IRAQ. MR. COHEN SAID HE EXPLAINED THE NEED TO CONTINUE TO CONTAIN IRAQI AGGRESSION AND RETALIATE FOR IRAQI ATTACKS ON WESTERN PATROLS OVER NO-FLY ZONES IN IRAQ. THE VISIT CAME AS U-S PLANES LAUNCHED GUIDED MISSILES AT SEVERAL IRAQI DEFENSE INSTALLATIONS AFTER COMING UNDER ARTILLERY FIRE. HOWEVER, MR. COHEN DENIED A REPORT IN THE LOCAL AL-KHALEEJ NEWSPAPER OF A U-S PLAN TO ENCOURAGE SEPARATIST GROUPS IN IRAQ. HE SAID U-S POLICY IS TO MAINTAIN IRAQ'S TERRITORIAL INTEGRITY BUT TO SEEK A CHANGE OF IRAQI LEADERSHIP. EARLIER, THE U-S DEFENSE SECRETARY VISITED OMAN, SAUDI ARABIA, AND BAHRAIN. HE ANNOUNCED THE U-S GOVERNMENT WILL SELL ADVANCED AIR-TO-AIR MISSILES TO BAHRAIN AND SAUDI ARABIA. HE SAID AGREEMENT WAS ALSO REACHED TO INCREASE JOINT MANEUVERS WITH THE SAUDI MILITARY AND TO ESTABLISH JOINT STUDIES ON THE THREAT OF CHEMICAL AND BIOLOGICAL WEAPONS. THE U-S DEFENSE SECRETARY IS TO VISIT QATAR AND KUWAIT, BEFORE HEADING TO JORDAN, EGYPT, AND ISRAEL LATER IN THE WEEK. (SIGNED) NEB/SB/JWH 08-Mar-99 11:23 AM EST (1623 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .