Menu JTA Search

Bomb Explosion Kills Two

A 55-year-old Arab and his 10-year-old son were killed here by an explosion of a time bomb they picked up in a vacant lot Friday. An explosive device detonated on an Egged bus in Jerusalem this morning causing slight damage but no casualties. The bus was on route from East Jerusalem to the center of the city. Police are investigating the incident.

Saleh Sattal of Jaffa, and his two sons went to a lot near a busy intersection to gather grass for their horse. One of the youngsters picked up a parcel containing a watch and electric wiring. He took it to his father who tried to pull out the wires, touching off an explosion that killed both of them. The other son was uninjured. Police said the device was a time bomb that detonated prematurely while being handled.

Robert Guyton, president of the National Bank of Georgia, has told the Jewish community here there would be no restrictions on the bank’s dealings with any country, including Israel, as a result of its purchase by Saudi Arabian entrepreneur Ghaith Pharaon.

In addition, Pharaon himself was quoted in the Atlanta Journal as saying, “We would welcome the Jewish community in this country doing business with us, because it is only by closer understanding and communication that we can solve much of our differences and problems.”

However, concern on the part of some of the bank’s Jewish customers was aroused when the Atlanta Journal also quoted Pharaon as saying, “We are restricted now from doing business with Israel by the Palestinian and boycott problems. But once these are lifted, I don’t see any reason why I shouldn’t be dealing with Israel.”

In an exclusive interview with the Southern Israelite, Guyton said that Pharaon’s statement about restrictions referred to his Saudi interests, not the bank’s. Pharaon has purchased 120,000 shares or 60 percent of Bert Lance’s stock in this city’s fifth largest bank. Lance was director of the Office of Management and Budget in the Carter Administration before he was forced to resign last year.

While Guyton did not deny that Pharaon’s majority ownership could enable him to make a major policy change, the bank president added: “It couldn’t happen without clearing out the present management,” adding, “Our policy will not change from what it had been previously.” Regarding the boycott issue, Guyton stated: “We couldn’t live with that kind of situation. It might different in Saudi Arabia, but he (Pharaon) is in our country now and has got to have his investment managed in the way this country operates.”

NEXT STORY