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House Warns Imf Not to Grant Official Status to the PLO

September 19, 1980
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

With only two Congressmen dissenting, the House of Representatives last night warned the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that the U.S. would “seriously” reduce its financial support for it, should the IMF grant any “official status” to the Palestine Liberation Organization.

Acting on a resolution sponsored by Rep. Richard Gilman (R.NY), 386 members backed that position and only Reps. John Conyers (D.Mich.) and James Johnson (R.Colo.) opposed it. Forty-four members were absent. Rep. Paul Findley (R.III.), who is regarded as the leading advocate in the House for legitimizing the PLO changed his vote from “no” to “aye.”

Saudi Arabia and Kuwait have threatened to cancel loans and suspend other credits to the IMF if it does not grant the PLO observer status. The IMF executive committee, at the urging of the U.S. and other Western Nations has denied the PLO’s application pending further consideration. The two oil rich Arab states and their allies have pressed for immediate action.

The IMF is a source of credit for Third World nations that require financial assistance in times of stress to supply their people with food. The action of the House, Congressional sources told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency today, is to help the Carter Administration encourage other governments to act against the Kuwaiti-Saudi Arabian demands and block majority support within the, IMF committee for entry by the PLO.

Gilman’s resolution said “It is the policy of the United States that the PLO should not be given membership in the Fund of be given observer status or any other official status at any meeting sponsored by or associated with the Fund. The U.S. executive director of the Fund shall promptly notify the Fund of such policy. In the event that the Fund provides either membership, observer status or any other official status to the PLO, such action would result in a serious diminution of U.S. support. Upon review of such action, the President would be required to report his recommendations to the Congress with regard to any further U.S. participation in the Fund.

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