Islamic States at the UN Want Security Council to Impose Economic Sanctions Against Israel

The Islamic group of states yesterday approved a move to call upon the Security Council to request of UN member states that they impose sanctions against Israel, including interruption of economic relations and the severance of diplomatic relations, in response to the Knesset decision last week proclaiming united Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. The 40-member group prepared a draft resolution, which is expected to be debated in the Council shortly, that would declare the Knesset’s action null and void. Diplomatic sources said there was little doubt that the United States would veto the measure.

Pakistan, which is the chairman of the Islamic group, submitted last Friday a request on behalf of all its members for an immediate meeting of the Council on the Jerusalem issue. The three Islamic states which are members of the Security Council — Bangladesh, Niger and Tunisia — are expected to sponsor the formal resolution. Council President Vasco Pereira of Portugal has been holding daily consultations with the other members about the Pakistani proposal for a meeting.

The draft approved by the Islamic states would have the Council reaffirm that “all legislative and administrative measures and actions taken by Israel, the occupying power, which have altered or purport to alter the character and status of the holy city of Jerusalem are null and void and must be rescinded forthwith.”

SAUDI ARABIA AND IRAQ ISSUE A WARNING

Some UN member states have suggested that if the U.S. vetoes the resolution economic reprisals might be taken against the U.S., implying a possible new oil embargo.

According to reports from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia and Iraq said today they would sever economic and political ties with any country which accepts united Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. The official Saudi press agency reported that an official communique was issued after talks today between King Khalid and Iraqi President Saddam Hussein which stated: “The two sides agreed to sever all political and economic relations with any country which responds to the Zionist entity and retains its embassy in Jerusalem.”

The communique added that Iraq and Saudi Arabia value those countries which have withdrawn their diplomatic missions from Jerusalem following the Knesset decision. The communique was issued after Hussein returned home from a 24-hours visit to Saudi Arabia, the first by an Iraqi President since the downfall of the Hashemite monarchy in Iraq in 1958.

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