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Unifil Chief Believes Quiet Will Prevail on Israel-lebanon Border

Maj. Gen. Emanuel Erskine of Ghana, the commander of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), said that recent talks he has held with Palestine Liberation Organization chief Yasir Arafat lead him to believe that quiet will prevail along the Israeli-Lebanese border. Erskine offered this view to reporters in Kiryat Shemona while on his way to Tiberias to attend a New Year’s reception for UN officers and officials tendered by the local city council.

Erskine said he also felt, after talks in Damascus with Syrian officials, that the Syrians as well as the PLO want a political solution to the problem of south Lebanon. He said he had seen no evidence of movement of heavy military equipment on the Lebanese side of the border with Israel, adding that the only movement had been of Israeli tanks within Israel, and this had apparently now ended.

Erskine said that events in Ghana, where a military coup last week overthrew President Hilla Limann, would make no difference either to himself as a Ghanian or to members of the Ghana contingent of UNIFIL.

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