UNITED NATIONS, N. Y. (Apr. 8)
In spite of the presence of the United Nations Emergency Force on the frontier between the Gaza Strip and Israel, the Egyptian fedayeen are pursuing their old tactics of marauding and infiltration of Israel, causing considerable damage and injury to Israeli nationals, according to a complaint sent to the Security Council today by Israel.
(Gen. Meir Amit, Acting Chief of Staff of the Israel Army, conferred today at Migdal Askelon with Maj. Gen. E. L. M. Burns, commander of the United Nations Emergency Force, on the question of erecting a fence along the Israel-Gaza demarcation line. Gen. Burns said he believed that the Egyptians will agree to the plan. Israel has already agreed in principle.)
Ambassador Eban, Israel’s representative here, sent a letter today to Sir Pierson Dixon of Britain, this month’s president of the Council, listing 19 separate fedayeen incursions and attacks along the Gaza border between March 10 and March 27. The fedayee planted mines, stole flocks of sheep, reaped wheat during the night in Israeli fields, stole stands of corn and filched irrigation pipes. During the raids, one raider was killed by an Israeli patrol and six have been arrested. The majority of the others escaped back across the frontier, through UNEF lines, and back to their bases in the Strip.
“The continuation of marauding and infiltration from the Gaza Strip into Israel, “Mr. Eban stated in his complaint to Sir Pierson, “is a matter which my government cannot avoid viewing with extreme concern. Experience has shown that incidents which at first sight appear to be relatively unimportant, such as infiltration and marauding for purposes of theft and robbery, are the invariable preludes to serious outbreaks of violence and terror throughout the area.”
Today’s complaint against renewed fedayeen activities was the second made by Israel since it withdrew its troops from the Gaza Strip. Mr. Ehan’s letter to Sir Pierson asked that the communication be circulated a long all Council members, but did not request a Security Council meeting on the issue. At the very time Mr. Eban’s letter was made public, Secretary General Dag Hammarskjold was meeting here with Egypt’s permanent delegate, Dr Omar Loutfi.