JERUSALEM (Aug. 13)
Defense Minister Moshe Dayan confirmed today reports that Soviet missiles were moved toward the Suez Canal during the first night of the cease-fire, Aug. 7-8. In an unscheduled address in the Knesset, Gen. Dayan called the development “a substantial, militarily significant movement of Soviet missiles in the Suez Canal area.” He said Israel had informed the United States government of the situation and had asked it to insure that the military situation be restored to its status before the cease-fire took effect. It has been reported that the U.S. has advised Israel of her right to take what it considers appropriate action to counter such a violation. The nature of retaliatory action allowed to Israel is not known. Gen. Dayan made it clear that the advancement of Soviet rockets was not only militarily significant in itself but also a substantial violation of the cease-fire agreement.
In that connection, he disclosed officially the six points of the agreement, one of which prohibits the introduction of military equipment within 50 kilometers (31 miles) on either side of the canal. The other five points were as follows: The cease-fire takes effect at midnight last Friday in Jerusalem, 1 a.m. Saturday in Cairo; both parties are to refrain from penetrating the cease-fire line and from firing across it; each party will use its own forces to police the cease-fire up to 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) on either side of the canal; each party has the right to invoke the assistance of the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO) on questions of violations; and the Geneva Convention on the treatment of prisoners of war is to apply.
Gen. Dayan made his statement in response to questions by Knesset members on the cease-fire situation. He said the Parliamentary Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee had been informed of the new missile moves on Tuesday, and that the cabinet was discussing it. It was understood that an unannounced cabinet meeting took place today. Foreign Minister Abba Eban’s scheduled meeting today with the foreign press, which had been postponed three times, was canceled without explanation. (In Washington, it was expected that the administration would press Cairo and Moscow for full explanations of the missile movement. The administration was said this afternoon to be accepting the Israeli charges as true. It was said that U.S.-Soviet deliberations on the new development would have to take place in Moscow, as both Soviet Ambassador Anatoly F. Dobrynin and Deputy Ambassador Yuri N. Tcherniakov are there on leave. According to reports here from Cairo, Egyptian officers deny reports that missiles have been moved closer to the Suez Canal since the cease-fire began.)