JERUSALEM (May. 22)
Israel’s position remains unchanged by the latest Security Council debate both as regards the question of Israel’s right to navigate the Suez Canal and on its reluctance to take the question to the International Court of Justice, a spokesman for the Foreign Ministry stated today.
The spokesman stressed that The Hague court has no power to implement Security Council resolutions, specifically the one of September 1951 which instructed Egypt to open the waterway to all nations, including Israel. Israelis dismiss Egyptian assertions that Egypt would accept the court’s ruling in this matter, noting that she has never accepted a negative decision.
However, it was noted that the Security Council debate had served a positive purpose in that it underscored the Council’s continued adherence to its six principles for operation of the canal and the fact that acceptance of Nasser’s terms for running the canal is temporary. It was also indicated that while the ending of the debate freed Israel’s hands as far as sending a “test ship” through the canal was concerned, it was not likely to do so until a majority of the maritime powers had sent their vessels through.