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UN Unit Will Leave in August to Probe Alleged Violations of Rights in Occupied Areas

A special working group set up by the United Nations Commission on Human Rights in Geneva last spring to investigate allegations that Israel was violating the human rights of Arabs in the occupied territories announced last week that it will visit four Arab countries next month.

According to the itinerary, the six experts on human rights will leave New York on Aug. I or 2 for Geneva and will proceed from there to Beirut, Lebanon. Damascus, Syria, Amman, Jordan and Cairo, Egypt. They will return to New York Aug. 24.

The ad hoc group was created by the Human Rights Commission at its 25th session “to investigate allegations concerning Israel’s violations of the Geneva Convention relative to the protection of civilian persons in time of war…in the territories occupied by Israel as a result of hostilities in the Middle East.”

The Israel Government has declared that it cannot consider the Commission’s resolution of March 4 setting up the group as a legal basis for cooperating with it. Israel has insisted that no investigation of alleged violations of human rights within territories it holds can take place without a similar investigation of the treatment of Jews In the Arab countries. The governments of Jordan. Syria. Lebanon and Egypt have all agreed to the working group’s request for cooperation.

The six experts constituting the working group for the Middle East also comprise the ad hoc group investigating the treatment of political prisoners and alleged infringement of trade union rights in South Africa. They are Ibrahima Boye, permanent representative of Senegal to the UN. who is chairman and rapporteur; Felix Ermacora, professor of public law at the University of Vienna; Branimir Janokovic, rector of the University of Nis, Yugoslavia; N. N, Jha. first secretary of the permanent mission of India to the UN; Louis Marchand Stens, professor of international law in Peru; and Waldo E. Waldron-Ramsey, counsellor to the Tanzanian mission to the UN.

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