Israel Cabinet Orders Tighter Controls to Prevent Arab Terrorist Acts

The Cabinet decided yesterday on further measures to combat terrorism in the wake of Friday’s explosion which killed 12 persons and injured 55 in a Jewish market-place in Jerusalem. No details of the decision were made public but Israeli newspapers reported that the measures include more thorough checks on cars traveling between the West Bank and Israel and a more selective basis for issuing work permits to Arabs from occupied territories who seek Jobs in Israel. Security patrols by police and civil defense wardens in West Jerusalem have been reinforced.

Meanwhile the last of the 12 dead was identified as a 14-year-old Arab boy from East Jerusalem. Seventeen of the injured were still hospitalized and five were reported in serious condition. Police gave no progress report of their investigation. They are still trying to trace the ownership of the Morris Oxford car in which the explosives were concealed.

Some 30 Arabs were remanded in custody for 10 days by a Jerusalem magistrate on suspicion of involvement in the blast. Observers say the Israel Government is faced with a dilemma since its policy has been to encourage normal relations between Arabs and Jews while the disruption of relations is an objective of Arab terrorists. The Israeli daily Maariv said in an editorial, “It is very difficult to take measures to prevent a recurrence of such crimes without rebuilding the walls of hatred between the (Jewish and Arab) communities.” Most Israeli newspapers urged the Government to intensify security precautions without changing its policy of fostering integration.

The Beirut newspaper A1 Moharrer claimed in a story that the explosives consisted of TNT and gasoline which was put into a British-made truck with Israeli license plates and driven into Jerusalem by a commando who pretended to be on a routine beer delivery.

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