United Nations (Mar. 9)
– Israel warned today that an attempt “by PLO criminals” to fly into Israel from Lebanon last Saturday “on terrorist missions” represents “a new departure with potentially serious implications” and that Israel is “duty bound to take all appropriate measures necessary to protect the lives and safety of its citizens.” The warning was contained in a letter Israeli Ambassador Yehuda Blum sent to the President of the Security Council, Ambassador to Peter Florin of East Germany.
Blum pointed out that the flights by the “PLO criminals” were made “in single-seater gliders with auxiliary engines. One terrorist brought his plane down north of Rosh Hanikra and was captured. The other terrorist landed his craft early in the morning in western Galilee near Kibbutz Afek. He took a young man hostage and after wandering around for several hours he eventually reached the village of Tamra where he first broke into a house and was subsequently captured.”
The terrorist, Blum continued, “told the people in the house that his mission was to take hostages and demand the release of other terrorist detained in Israeli jails.” The Israeli envoy requested that his letter be circulated as an official document of the Security Council.
Meanwhile, the Security Council was scheduled to meet later this afternoon to discuss Lebanon’s complaint against “repeated Israeli attacks in south Lebanon.” Blum met today with U.S. Ambassador Jeane Kirkpatrick to discuss the upcoming Council’s session. He also met with Florin in that connection.