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UN Observers Misled by Syrians That Israeli Air Force Attacks Caused Civilian Casualties

An Army spokesman contended today that United Nations observers were misled into accepting Syrian allegations that civilian casualties were caused by Israeli Air Force attacks in the region of Dael village on Jan. 8. Dael was one of a number of targets hit by Israeli jets in retaliatory air raids against Syrian Army positions and terrorist strongholds.

The UN observers reported that there were no military or para-military installations in the Dael area. The Army spokesman charged that the observers based their report on the word of a Syrian translator at a meeting of the Mixed Armistice Commission whose objectivity was highly doubtful.

The spokesman said the UN report contradicted a broadcast on the terrorist “Voice of Palestine” radio which stated that “On the morning of Jan. 8 enemy aircraft attacked our positions in the Dael area. Our forces suffered no casualties.” The radio announced later in the day that “enemy aircraft attacked again in the same area. Two of our fighters were injured.”

The broadcasts were a clear admission that terrorist bases existed in the area, the Israeli spokesman said. He noted that on Dec. 27, following a previous Israeli air attack on Dael, the Egyptian Middle East News Agency reported from Cairo that “Fedayeen sources report that Israeli raids aimed against a Fedayeen supply base (at Dael) caused no casualties.”

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