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Israel Returns Half-tracks Detained by Customs; Will Buy Parts

The Israel Embassy here announced yesterday that it had turned back to an arms dealer the 21 surplus army half-tracks whose shipment to Israel had been forbidden by customs officials in New York, even as reports were circulating that the State Department might yet give Israel permission to ship the armored vehicles.

The Israel Embassy stated yesterday that when it was brought to the attention of the Israelis that the export license for spare parts did not validly cover the assembled vehicles, the latter had been ordered returned to the dealer. The dealer has since been asked to supply $150,000 worth of spare parts which would be sanctioned under the license.