China Denounces Israel As an Impediment to Mideast Peace

The People’s Republic of China denounced Israel in the General Assembly last night, declaring that its “lawlessness was intolerable” and blamed it for the worsening situation in the Middle East during the past year.

The accusation was made in a speech by Zhang Wenjin, China’s Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs. He charged that Israel continued to obstruct “a reasonable settlement” of the Mideast conflict. He said Israel committed further aggression against Arab countries, referring to its attack on Iraq’s nuclear reactor last June and its invasions and attacks on Lebanon.

Zhang praised the Arab states and the European Economic Community (EEC) for their “positive efforts” to bring a settlement to the Middle East. He stated, “Our attitude is: we welcome all initiatives that are conducive to a comprehersive and just settlement of the Middle East question and to peace and stability in the region.” China, in previous years, had expressed support for the Camp David process but did not mention Camp David this year.

ISRAEL REJECTED IRAQI’S CHARGE

In another development, Israel issued a statement last night rejecting a charge made yesterday by the current President of the General Assembly, Ismet Kittani of Iraq who, in his own statement, criticized Israel and Iran, the two countries which had denounced his election Kittani said Israel and Iran should apologize to the General Assembly which elected him in the “democratic tradition specified in the rules” of the Assembly.

Replying to the charges, Israel’s Ambassador to the UN, Yehuda Blum, reiterated his earlier statement noting that Israel had hoped Kittani would exercise his functions with impartiality. Blum said: “It is therefore both surprising and somewhat disturbing that the President of the General Assembly should have seen fit to release a statement polemicizing a member state that has placed its trust in the President’s fairness and impartiality, despite the sad record of the President’s home country in its behavior toward that state.”

NEXT STORY