WASHINGTON (Nov. 15)
The United States said today it agreed with a statement by the United Nations Security Council last night expressing concern over the imprisonment and planned deportation by Israel of Nablus Mayor Bassam Shaka.
“The deportation is clearly a step that has deep psychological impact on other West Bank leaders and on the population there,” State Department spokesman Hodding Carter said. “We believe that with the autonomy talks under way a special effort must be made by all parties to avoid actions that will make negotiations more difficult. We have joined as a government in the Security Council statement expressing our concern.”
The Security Council statement was made after an informal meeting of the Council in New York last night in which the Council agreed to Secretary of State Cyrus Vance’s demand that Iran’s request for a Security Council meeting be put off until the hostages in the U.S. Embassy in Teheran are released. The Council’s President, Sergio Palacios de Vizzio of Bolivia, told reporters he was authorized by the Council to make the statement of concern.
Carter said today that “We have expressed our concern on this matter to the Israeli government.” Carter had said yesterday that the U.S. would have “no comment” until the legal and political situation has been cleared up. At today’s State Department briefing Carter was also asked about the U.S. dealings with the Palestine Liberation Organization in the efforts to free the hostages in Iran. Carter said “in this one instance,” the U.S. would do anything to obtain the release of the Americans held in the Embassy.
Meanwhile, Jewish religious leaders were scheduled to join Christian and Moslem leaders in an interfaith service at the National Cathedral here today to pray for the safety of the hostages. The service was organized by the families of the hostages.