Syria Rejects U.S. Protest Against Maritime Blockade of Palestine, State Dept. Reveals

Syria has rejected a U.S. protest against a maritime blockade imposed by Syria and Egypt against Palestine’s coast, the State Department disclosed today.

Department press officer Michael J. McDermott said the “gist” of the note was that “Syria is in agreement with the other Arab League states in acting to suppress disorder and restore peace to Palestine as soon as possible. ” The Department is still studying a reply received from the Egyptian Government on June 3 concerning the blockade. At that time, the Egyptian reply was termed “not satisfactory.” It was announced that the Department was preparing a reply to Egypt, but McDermott said today that the situation was still under study and that the reply had not yet been sent.

In response to a request by U.N. mediator Count Folke Bernadotte, three Beech craft planes are now on their way to the Middle East to assist in carrying out the Palestine truce, McDermott stated. The military attache at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo he added, has one plane which he will make available to Bernadotte and two others are being flown from Germany.

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