Egypt Prepares Reply to British Protest on Akaba Incibent

The Egyptian Foreign Ministry has prepared a reply to the British note of protest against the Egyptian shelling of the British freighter Anshun at the month of the Gulf of Akaba last week it was reported in the press here today. The dispatches said that the Egyptian reply is expected to be delivered at the British Embassy in Cairo within the next two or three days.

The Times of London reported that the Egyptian note will almost certainly be based on the contention that as ships entering the Gulf of Akaba pass through Egyptian territorial waters they are obliged to stop for identification or inspection. “Since Egypt considers herself at war with Israel the Egyptian Government will claim that ships must also submit to questioning about their destination and the nature of their cargo,” the Times report continued. “It ships fail to stop when ordered, it is incumbent upon Egyptian shore batteries to fire warning shots at them and if such shots fail to persuade the ships to halt, then the batteries are entitled to fire directly at the ships, the Egyptian note will state.

Egyptian Premier Col. Abdel Gamal Nasser, in an interview published in today’s Daily Telegraph says that the Gaza situation “seems to have calmed down.” The Egyptian dictator added that Egypt’s policy has always been to make no move but to watch an “Israel move to launch an attack across the borders. This episode may now be almost resolved,” he added, “but the long-term problem of Israel remains.”

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