UNITED NATIONS, N. Y. (Nov. 28)
Two Arab speakers were reprimanded today by the chairman of the United Nations General Assembly’s special political committee for tactlessness in attacks on Israel during speeches on the Arab refugee problem. They were the delegate of Iraq and Dr. Izzat Tannous, the representative of the Palestine Arab refugees.
Chairman Emilio Arenales Catalan, of Guatemala, acted after Ambassador Abba Eban, head of the Israel delegation, rising to a point of order, objected to the Iraqi delegate’s failure to refer to Israel properly in a speech yesterday. The chairman said he could not dictate the language of any delegate but he appealed to all speakers to address themselves to the body in a “spirit of courtesy.”
Mr. Eban had objected to the Iraqi delegate referring to the Israel Government in “euphemisms” and by indirection. The Arab had consistently spoken of the “Tel Aviv authorities” instead of the Government of Israel. Mr. Eban noted that delegates should refer to all countries by their sovereign titles and as they were listed among the UN member states. The chairman agreed.
Later, at the conclusion of a long speech by Dr. Izzat Tannous, representative of the Palestine Arab refugees, in which he had attacked Israel violently, the chairman indicated he should have spoken of the refugees not of political matters. He had not interrupted, the chairman explained out of courtesy to the speaker and to several delegations.
In an address to the committee yesterday, Mr. Eban declared that the real solution of the Arab refugee problem lies in their integration in the Arab “host” countries. Israel, he noted, had already absorbed 450,000 refugees from the Arab countries–all Jews–and Israel could find room for them and other refugees from Europe and the Arab states, with far vaster territories, could absorb all the Arab refugees.
Underlining Israel’s willingness to contribute to a settlement of the Arab refugee problem, Mr. Eban said that Israel had accepted 48, 500 Arab refugees who rejoined families in the Jewish State. He also stressed Israel’s repeated declarations of readiness to pay compensation for abandoned Arab lands.