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State Department Expresses ‘concern’ but Cites Lack of Diplomatic Ties

The executions are a matter of “genuine concern” to the United States Government. State Department sources said today. They added that the U.S. did not have the facts of the case at first hand because America has no functioning embassy in Iraq. Diplomatic relations were severed by the Iraqis in June, 1967, as a result of the Six-Day War. Officials said the prevailing Iraqi attitude toward the U.S. was such that it might do other persons facing execution more harm than good for Washington to attempt overt diplomatic pressures in their behalf.