UNITED NATIONS (Nov. 15)
Israel was aligned with the Soviet Union and the Arab bloc yesterday as the General Assembly’s Fourth Committee approved a draft resolution on African liberation by a vote of 104-5, with 11 abstentions. The United States was on the losing side with Brazil, Britain, Costa Rica and Spain. The Committee, which considers matters pertaining to trust and non-self-governing territories, asked the Assembly to “deem it imperative” that negotiations begin soon between Portugal and liberation movements in its administered African territories with a view to speeding up decolonization.
Israeli delegate Avigdor Dagan cited his “serious reservations” over the paragraph endorsing just treatment as prisoners of war of freedom fighters captured in those African territories. Dagan said this language conflicted with the Geneva Convention on protection of civilians in time of war, and said he would have abstained from voting on that paragraph had paragraphs been voted on separately. (Separate-paragraph voting was defeated, 79-26, with 15 abstentions). But Dagan, however, reluctantly, voted for the overall draft. The abstainers included the Dominican Republic, Panama, Paraguay, Portugal, Saudi Arabia and South Africa.