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Egypt, Syria Warn U.N. Assembly Refugees Must Be Returned to Country of Origin

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The question of displaced Jews came before the U.N. General Assembly today when both Egypt and Syria demanded that Jewish refugees be sent back to the countries in which they resided before the war. These demands were considered the opening blow in the Arab League’s fight to prevent Jewish immigration into Palestine.

The demands were made by the chief Egyptian delegate and president of the Egyptian senate, Mohamed Hussein Heykal Pasha and the chairman of the Syrian delegation Faris El Khoury. Neither of them mentioned Palestine for the Jews by name but the inference was clear.

Heykal Pasha declared that the refugee problem which he called one of the most important questions before the Assembly cannot be successfully solved unless victims of racial and religious persecution are returned to their country of origin. “In no case,” he emphasized, “must resettlement be imposed on a sovereign nation or run counter to the aspiration or freely expressed wishes of the population.” He hinted that Egypt will not support the proposed International Refugee Organization unless these recommendations are met.

El Khoury said the same thing in different words, adding that resettlement of refugees should have no political objective or implication. He warned that to act otherwise might lead to disturbance of peace and security. Both delegates strongly supported the creation of a Trusteeship Council.

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