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UN Assembly Approves by Consensus Measure Aimed Against Hijacking

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A resolution aimed against aerial hijacking was approved by consensus of the General Assembly this afternoon. Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations, Chaim Herzog, said in a speech afterwards that although Israel went along with the consensus, the resolution is nevertheless “a disappointing one.” The resolution, adopted earlier this week by the General Assembly’s special political committee, calls for improved airport security, the exchange of relevant information between nations and ratification by all countries of existing international conventions dealing with the safety of civil aviation.

Herzog, however, contended that the resolution “is weak, for it is a compromise with the forces that back and finance acts of terror. The result of this compromise is a bore minimum of what this urgent problem requires in the form of a resolution,” he said. The draft text was amended in the political committee, under Arab pressure, to include language that could be interpreted as critical allusions to past actions by Israel to combat aerial hijacking.

Herzog also complained that the resolution has no explicit call for states “to provide for the prosecution and punishment of persons who perpetrate acts of international terror and aerial hijacking.” He said that governments which allow terrorists to train in their countries and finance their activities should have been recognized as accomplices of the terrorists. The resolution also failed to call upon states to suspend air services to any country which gives sanctuary to hijackers, Herzog said.

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