WASHINGTON (Oct. 24)
Israel may bring the issue of Iraqi pogroms before the United Nations, Israel Ambassador Eliahu Elath said today after a talk with George C. McGhee, Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs. Ambassador Elath called at the State Department this afternoon following a request made of the United States by the Israel Government to intervene to halt the persecution of Jews in Iraq.
(At Lake Success, it was pointed out that the issue cannot be brought before the present Assembly session whose calendar is already closed. The Israel delegation to the United Nations will, however, take notice of the situation in Iraq at the first opportunity which presents itself in the course of debate in various U.N. committees.)
The Ambassador said that he found Mr. McGhee “receptive.” He also stated that the Iraqi Government’s action could make more difficult the integration of Arabs in Israel and might “torpedo” peace negotiations. It was also pointed out that Iraqi pogroms could interfere in the repatriation of Arabs desiring to return to their families in Israel.
The Ambassador discussed with Sec. McGhee the crisis confronting the 150,000 Jews in Iraq who are “in the greatest danger” because of “mass persecution and pogroms.” Iraq was charged by Ambassador Elath with violation of the U.N. Human Rights resolution. Mr. Elath said that 2,000 Jews are now in concentration camps in Iraq and many are being tortured to death. He called the present drive a “holy war” against Jews. Iraqi soldiers who were defeated by the Israel Army were attacking young Jewish girls and old men in Iraq, the Ambassador said.