UNITED NATIONS (Jun. 16)
The United States walked out of a meeting of all UN member states today to protest the failure to invite Israel. The American representative, James Leonard, made the gesture when he found out that Israel had been excluded by the Organization for African Unity (OAU) which called the meeting to mark the first anniversary of the shooting at Sowetho, South Africa.
Israel’s Ambassador to the UN, Chaim Herzog asked Secretary General Kurt Waldheim for an urgent meeting to find out why Israel was not invited. Herzog told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that “It is a sad but accurate commentary indeed on the United Nations today to see how the racist Arab states impose their will on every occasion on UN institutions and to note the moral cowardice and weakness of those who submit to such Arab pressures.” The Sowetho incident, on June 16, 1976, touched off six months of bloodshed during which at least 600 Black Africans were killed.