Jordan Continues Provocations on Israel Frontier; Tension High

Jordanian forces continued today to keep the long Jordan-Israel frontier in a state of high tension and were responsible for two attacks in one of which an Israel soldier was shot and severely wounded by a Jordanian sniper

A Jordan force opened fire today on an Israel patrol near an Arab village northeast of Hadera, in Samaria. The patrol, operating well within Israel territory, returned the fire and the Jordanians broke off the engagement. The patrol had been investigating the kidnaping Monday of an Israeli Arab shepherd and the theft of his 75 head of sheep. Arab witnesses said the shepherd had been seized by Jordanian soldiers who drove the herd across the border.

In the second incident of the day, a Jordanian sniper fired at a group of Israeli soldiers standing some 450 yards from the frontier line in central Israel, hitting one.

ARMISTICE COMMISSION ASKS ISRAEL TO RELEASE JORDANIAN

The Israel-Jordan Mixed Armistice Commission acted today on a Jordanian company with Israel boycotting the session and adopted a resolution calling on Israel to release Jordanian farmer arrested near Tabyeh village on November 21. The resolution was adopted in the absence of proof establishing that the arrested man had actually been on Israel territory.

The Israel authorities had previously announced that a joint Israel-Jordan investigation under United Nations auspices had established that the man had been arrested inside Israel territory and would be released in accordance with routine after the customary police investigation. The Jordanians had announced an “ultimatum” to Israel to return the prisoner but Israel officials denied ever having received such an ultimatum.

The armistice commission resolution took the position that the man had been working “in the immediate vicinity of the demarcation line” when approached by an Israel police-man who took him into custody under threat of force. The resolution termed this hostile act, “called for the prisoner’s release and for measures to prevent recurrence of such incidents.

The UN commission chairman said later that while the investigation had not proven the man’s presence on Israel territory, there was no doubt the man had been on the very borderline or its immediate vicinity. He called on both sides to settle cases such as this involving encroachments of the demarcation line by cultivators without the use of police.

ISRAEL CRITICIZES COMMISSION’S RULINGS; ASSAILS U.N. CHAIRMAN

Severe criticism of the commission’s rulings immediately followed in an official Israel statement which assailed the UN chairman for disregarding the investigation report to vote for the Jordanian draft resolution. The fact that Jordan had submitted the draft resolution, the statement noted, “underlines the ludicrous nature of the Jordanian campaigned false allegations” against Israel.

The Israel statement described the resolution as “in open contradiction to any objective examination of the facts established by the armistice investigation.” It denied the finding that an Israel policeman had crossed the demarcation line to make the arrested noted that the arrested man himself had located, within Israel territory, the site of his arrest.

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