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International Law Commission Refuses to Act on Israel’s Plea

The International Law Commission here rejected an Israel plea that it act on the Egyptian blockade of the Strait of Tiran, the entrance to the Gulf of Akaba.

The Israeli representative asked that a draft article “on the right of innocent passage of merchant ships through the territorial seas of other states” be amended to grant passage regardless of the cargo carried by such vessels and that the neighboring states have no jurisdiction over the passing ships.

The Soviet and Nationalist Chinese representatives, in a rare union, both suggested that the questions raised by Israel and the Egyptian blockade of the Gulf of Akaba were too complex for the Law Commission and were better left to the International Court of Justice. The commission agreed, and adopted the draft as originally submitted.

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