TEL AVIV (Jun. 13)
Israel took steps today to knock down the allegations made by Syria, and repeated by the Soviet Union, charging Israel with massing troops on its Syrian border.
After Syria agreed to allow United Nations military observers to visit its side of the frontier facing Israel, Israeli army officers started out this morning with a group of U.N. military observers on a tour of all Syrian-Israeli border points, from Tel Dan in the north to Tel Katsir, a kibbutz on Lake Tiberias.
Included in the tour will be not only the Israeli border posts but also the demilitarized zones and the so-called “defense” areas. Under the 1949 Israeli-Syrian armistice agreement, neither side is allowed to station troops or arms in the demilitarized zones. In the “defense” areas, the Israelis are allowed, under the 1949 pact, to station only a limited number of troops and limited quantities of armaments.
The border inspections by the military men attached to the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization had been demanded by Syria. But the same type of check being made on Israel’s side will also be carried out on the Syrian side, if the Damascus Government keeps its promise.