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Soviet, Syria Continue Assault on Israel in General Assembly Debate

Syria and the Soviet Union continued today their earlier efforts to include Israel as one of the parties to blame for the tensions along the Turco-Syrian border, but the debate on Syria’s complaint against Turkey has just about petered out.

Saleh el Bitar, Syrian Foreign Minister, who spoke today, tried hard to keep Israel involved in the dispute. As he did last week, he again kept referring to what he calls the “Zionist-imperialist conspiracy” in the Middle East. It was that “conspiracy” that was responsible, he said, for last year’s Israeli “aggression” against Egypt, and it was that policy, backed by Britain, France and the United States, which forms the “true background of the tensions in the Middle East” today.

The same general line was followed by Moscow’s Foreign Minister, Andrei A. Gromyko. He referred to the manner in which, he said, Israel, Britain and France had professed peaceful intentions “only two or three days before the armed forces of these countries attacked Egypt.” But, on the whole, Mr. Gromyko’s long speech today, in which he reiterated all of his previous accusations of U.S. -Turco-Israeli “perfidy,” was seen by most observers here as striking a subdued note. Neither Syria nor Russia introduced a resolution to back up their calls for a commission to probe the situation along the Turco-Syrian frontier.

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