NEW YORK (Apr. 19)
The Palestine Liberation Organization’s increasing ties with Peru have become a source of controversy within President Alan Garcia’s administration, according to “Latin American Report,” published by the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith.
The ADL also reported that the PLO and its supporters are continuing efforts toward establishing an office in Argentina and gaining increased stature in other Latin American countries.
In making the report public, Abraham Foxman, ADL’s associate national director and head of its International Affairs Division, noted that Bolivia had just upgraded the status of the PLO mission in La Paz, Foxman said he had sent a telex to President Victor Paz Estenssoro expressing “profound concern,”
The telex said that “permitting the PLO to expand greatly the number of its agents and granting them privileges ordinarily reserved for diplomats… poses a grave threat to personal safety, public order, stability and ultimately to democratic institutions,”
“Latin American Report,” published by ADL’s Jarkow Institute for Latin America, is written by Rabbi Morton Rosenthal, director of the ADL’s Latin American Affairs Department, and Martin Schwartz, assistant director. It provides information on issues and events in Latin American, affecting Jewish communities in the region and the State of Israel, The ADL report gave the following examples of differences emerging within the Peruvian government’s ruling APRA Party over relations with the PLO:
While President Garcia has made statements supporting the PLO, the president of the Chamber of Deputies, Fernando Leon de Vivero, is quoted as saying, during an APRA delegation’s visit to Israel, that the statements “do not speak for all sectors of the APRA Party.”
Senator Javier Valle Riestra, the leader of the Peruvian delegation to the United Nations Human Rights Commission meeting in Geneva, delivered a strongly anti-Israel speech urging PLO participation in an international Middle East peace conference and Israeli withdrawal to its 1948 borders.
Subsequently, APRA Party Secretary General Luis Negreiros assured the Israeli Ambassador to Peru that the Senator’s remarks did not reflect the sentiments of the party or of the government. And in January, leading Peruvian officials visited Israel and met with Israeli leaders.
The report said that Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega expressed Sandinista “solidarity and firm support for the noble struggle of the Palestinian people” in a letter to PLO chief Yasir Arafat, which was broadcast over Nicaraguan radio.
SITUATION IN ARGENTINA
In Argentina, according to the ADL, Zehdi Terzi, the PLO representative to the U.N. told reporters that the PLO is trying “to establish.
bilateral and diplomatic relations with Argentina,” In an article in La Prensa, Terzi, reported that PLO representatives have had “secret contacts” with the military, government officials, and “heads of subversive groups.”
The ADL’s report also cited indications of continuing Libyan ties with extremists in the region, The Libyan-backed Movement of International Revolutionary Committees paid homage to Colombian terrorist Jairo de Jesus Calvo Ocampo, alias “Ernesto Rojas,” who was killed February 22 by the secret police in Bogota,
Among other developments noted in the report were a Costa Rican court’s authorization of the extradition to the Soviet Union of accused Nazi war criminal Bohdan Koziy to stand trial, and a Brazilian magazine article claiming that the body exhumed from a Sao Paulo cemetery last year was not, contrary to police and forensic experts’ claims, that of notorious Auschwitz doctor Josef Mengele.
Among positive developments in the region cited was the unanimous decision by the Uruguayan Senate urging the government to denounce the 1975 UN resolution equating Zionism with racism and “to begin the necessary measures for a new resolution which would abrogate … this unjust, anti-historic, United Nations resolution.”