East Germany to Hike Its Arms Assistance to the PLO

The Palestine Liberation Organization has been promised a substantial increase in military assistance from East Germany. According to well informed sources in West Berlin, the East Germans made that pledge to a PLO delegation now visiting East Berlin. East German military experts will be sent to Lebanon to train the PLO in the use of new weapons systems received from the Soviet Union and other Warsaw Pact countries, the sources said.

The sources noted that the PLO delegation, headed by Kahlil Al-Wazir, whose title is “Vice Chief Commander of the Armed Forces of the Palestinian Revolution,” is receiving considerable attention in the government-controlled East German media. While East Germany has always been involved in the supply and training of PLO military units, it usually played down the military aspect while stressing solidarity with the Palestinian people in political terms.

Now the emphasis is on the military relationship. Wazir’s picture appeared on the front page of Neues Deutschland, official organ of the ruling Communist Party. Four generals of the East German Peoples Army posed with him, an unusual gesture for a foreign delegation.

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