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Security Council Rejects Resolution to Condemn Israel for Air Raid

The resolution proposed at the Security Council session here to condemn Israel for its air raid on Syria on July 14, in retaliation for acts of terror in Israel by infiltrators from Syria, was rejected today by a vote of 6 in favor to none against, with 9 abstentions.

The president of the Security Council then announced that the resolution — proposed jointly by Jordan and Mali — had not obtained the required number of votes. Voting in favor of the resolution were the Soviet Union, Bulgaria, Jordan, Mali, Nigeria and Uganda. Those abstaining were the United States, the United Kingdom, France, China, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Uruguay and Argentina.

Ambassador Michael Comay, head of the Israeli delegation to the United Nations, told the Security Council that it was reassuring to his Government that the great majority of Council members, whatever their opinion of the Israeli air action, were unwilling to view it in isolation from the events to which it was a response. The situation the Council was dealing with had lasted for many years, and a single debate could not radically change it, he said. Still, a few positive features had emerged from the debate, he stated.

For one thing, the cease-fire had been re-established, and Israel hoped it would be maintained. If this meant that in the border areas there would be no more firing on Israeli farmers, vehicles and fishermen, it would contribute a great deal towards relaxing tension, said Mr. Comay. Secondly, the debate had exposed to public scrutiny the sabotage raids carried on in the name of the El-Fatah organization, and produced a heightened awareness of the danger to peace they involved.

Declaring that Israel regarded Syrian authorities as implicated in the El-Fatah terrorist acts, Mr. Comay said if the El-Fatah raids into Israeli territory continued they would be bound to produce tension and might confront the Council with another deterioration in the situation. He expressed hope that the governments of neighboring Arab states would comply with their obligations under the armistice agreements and take effective measures to prevent illegal crossings of their borders into Israel. The provisions of the armistice agreements, he declared, applied not only to official armed forces, but to para-military and non-regular forces, as well as civilians.

Syria could without difficulties stop these groups from crossing into Israel whenever it chose to, he said, but, instead, Syria “glorifies and publicizes the exploits of these El-Fatah gangs.” This was “unofficial warfare” involving not only Syria and Israel, but Jordan and Lebanon as well.

Mr. Comay went on to say that the armistice agreements negated all forms of war, of threats of war, whether labeled “a war of liberation” or any other name. In effect, it made the two governments joint guarantors and custodians of the border between them, and made each responsible for ensuring that the border would not be violated from its side of the line, he said. “If Syria claims for itself the right to seek the overthrow of Israel by armed force, as indeed it does, then the peace not only of the border but of the whole Middle East is upon a slippery slope,” he stated.

On behalf of the Israel Government, Mr. Comay renewed its call to the leaders of Syria to “seek an honorable and peaceful accommodation with Israel, through the path and processes of dialogue.”

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