Soviet Submarines Harmful to Middle East “convalescence,” U.N. Chief Hints

United Nations Secretary General Dag Hammarskjold today indicated disapproval of Moscow’s selling submarines to Egypt. At the same time, he expressed cautious optimism over the situation in the Middle East saying that the area is now “convalescing.” He spoke at a luncheon tendered him by the United Nations Correspondents Association.

Asked whether the delivery of the submarines would not set back the convalescence, he replied, “so very many things patients eat are not right for their health.” He said there were “solid chances of getting the patients out of bed” and that his reticence in speaking about positive developments was not due entirely to the fact that he had to keep quiet, but that he did not want “in anyway to provoke new discussions and a relapse into old arguments.”

On the United Nations Emergency Force, Mr. Hammarskjold thought that the experience gained in the Sinai area might be utilized to make it “part of the natural arsenal” of the UN when the need arises. He found that it was a very useful experiment. As for the duration of UNEF’s stay, he was very vague and said only that he saw “no weakening of the generosity” of the governments which have provided the forces. When asked whether he had received a reply from Cairo on Israel’s request for statements on belligerency, he replied: “My correspondence with most of the capitals in the Middle East is a bit one-sided.”

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