Israel Mulls U.N. Debate on Syria; Eshkol Warns on Refugee Plans
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Israel Mulls U.N. Debate on Syria; Eshkol Warns on Refugee Plans

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Israel may ask the United Nations Security Council for a meeting and full-scale debate, dealing with the series of armed military attacks from the Syrian side of Israel’s northern border, which have been harrassing Israeli farmers, workers and frontier patrolmen for a week.

Since Israel has already filed a complaint regarding these aggressions with the Security Council, it is hoped here that the authorities at Damascus may have decided, or found it possible, to halt those frontier attacks. But strict watch is being kept on the “uneasy tranquility” along the Syrian border.

The events on that border were discussed at today’s weekly Cabinet meeting here. At the same meeting. Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion told the Ministers he will appear later this week before the security and foreign affairs committee of the Knesset (Parliament). One of the subjects he will discuss with the committee will be Israel’s proposals, already worked out by the Foreign Ministry, for the policy to be followed by the Israel Government at the next session of the UN General Assembly, concerning the Arab refugee problem.

Israel’s reaction to proposals being discussed in foreign circles, regarding the Arab refugee problem, was seen here today when Finance Minister Levi Eshkol delivered an address at a Mapai Party election rally. Mr. Eshkol said that the proposals which give the refugees a “free” choice between repatriation to Israel and compensation is “an atomic time bomb aimed at our existence.”

It is unlikely, said Mr. Eshkol, that “a single Arab” would not “choose” to enter Israel, under such a “free choice” offer. “If an appreciable number returned,” he said, “and, given the high Arab birth rate against the low Israeli mortality rate, including the low death rate among Israeli Arabs, it can be easily calculated that, within several years, Arabs would be a majority of Israel’s population.”

Mr. Eshkol stated that Mr. Ben-Gurion’s recent trip to America must be viewed against the background of “the tough tests on this issue facing Israel. “He added “it is necessary to give warning in time as to what is possible and what is impossible on Israel’s part.”

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