WASHINGTON (Mar. 21)
Israel Ambassador Abba Eban, acting on instructions of the Israel Government, asked Secretary of State John Foster Dulles for an interview as “a matter of urgency” arising from “the murderous attack by an organized Jordanian force” on a passenger bus in the Negev last Wednesday.
State Department sources today indicated that the Department would not make any “hasty” condemnation of Jordan and would also not “prejudge” the incident. The general feeling in the State Department seems to be that the United Nations truce supervision organization must first complete its investigation and report the facts. Only then, after studying the UN findings, if it is felt that any American action is warranted or desirable, various courses of action may be considered, it was indicated.
Differences were cited to show that the Negev incident differed from the Kibya affair in which the United States lost no time in demanding United Nations Security Council action. It was pointed out that the Department’s action with regard to Kibya was based on a report by Gen. Vagn Bennike, chief of the United Nations truce supervision organization, which blamed Israel. Therefore, according to today’s explanation, the Department denounced Israel and called for United Nations action because of America’s interest in maintaining the authority of the United Nations and preserving peace and security.