UNITED NATIONS, N. Y. (Feb. 2)
Two issues affecting the Israel Arab situation were being studied here by all major delegations today as a result of Secretary-General U Thant’s review of steps facing the General Assembly, due to the financial crisis threatening the solvency of the United Nations as a whole.
One of the issues concerns a proposal by Mr. Thant for a “comprehensive review of the whole question of peacekeeping operations in all its aspects.” Such a review, he indicated to the Assembly yesterday, would go beyond the differences between the United States and the Soviet Union on the payment of assessments for maintaining the peacekeeping forces. One of the major peace-keeping groups to be subjected to “comprehensive review” is the United Nations Emergency Force, which guards Israel from Egyptian attack in the Gasa Strip and at Sharm el-Sheikh, overlooking the Gulf of Akaba.
The other issue was a suggestion by Mr. Thant that, if the Assembly cannot now resolve the financial dispute between the U.S.A. and the USSR, it must at least make provisions for funds needed by certain UN bodies. Among such bodies, the Secretary-General pointed out, is the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees. UNRWA’s mandate is due to expire next June 30, and this year’s Assembly has been scheduled to debate extension or alteration of the UNRWA mandate, as well as a budget for aid to Arab refugees beyond next June.
Mr. Thant suggested that, if no full budget for UNRWA is voted, the agency be authorized to continue its work until the end of 1965, operating along the lines of the 1964 budget. While these issues, among all concerning the fiscal crisis, were being discussed behind the scenes here today, the Assembly was in recess until next Monday.