JERUSALEM (Feb. 4)
Premier David Ben Gurion interrupted his vacation today to hurry back to Jerusalem to attend an extraordinary Cabinet meeting the called to consider the rapidly deteriorating situation on the Israel-Jordan border. The weeks-old tension culminated Monday night in the mining by Arabs of an Israel freight train one mile from Jordan territory in central Palestine.
Speaking in Parliament, Foreign Minister Moshe Sharett assured the deputies that the government was carefully following the situation. He opposed a Herut motion for a debate in Parliament, and urged that the matter be referred to the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Security Committee “for the good of the country.” His recommendation was approved by the Knesset.
Meanwhile, United Nations truce observers began an investigation of the train attack as Israel lodged a stiff protest with the Mixed Armistice Commission. Military attaches of foreign countries who are stationed in Tel Aviv today mixed with correspondents surveying the scene of the attack. It was learned that the landmine had been placed Monday under cover of a diversionary attack on a nearby kibbutz.
Israel authorities today denied new Arab charges of attacks on Jordan villages by Israeli soldiers. (The Amman correspondent of the London Times today reported that an Arab Legion spokesman charged the Israelis with attacking the Jordan village of Falama. The Jordan spokesman estimated the Israeli force at between 600 and 1,000 men.) The Israel authorities reiterated that the only action in which Israel troops had been involved was in repulsing infiltrees on Israeli soil.