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U.N. Body Discussing Statement Deploring Israeli Expulsion Order

March 28, 1991
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Israel’s decision to deport four Palestinians from the administered Gaza Strip is expected to come under criticism from the Security Council, which held meetings this week to discuss issuing a non-binding statement on the action from the council president.

The deportation order, which is being appealed by the four, was also criticized by the U.S. State Department, which said Wednesday that the United States would be willing to support a non-binding U.N. statement, depending on the exact wording.

During informal Security Council consultations Tuesday, the 15 member states were unable to agree upon a statement, and further consultations were scheduled for late Wednesday. Austrian Ambassador Peter Hohenfellner is serving this month as president of the council.

An initial draft copy of a proposed statement deplores the deportation order, calling it “a violation of the Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War of Aug. 12, 1949.”

The proposed statement also calls on Israel to halt deportations and to ensure the return of people who already have been deported.

If the deportation of the four men is carried out, Israel will have expelled 66 Palestinians since the start of the intifada, or Palestinian uprising.

Israeli officials have described the four men as hard-core terrorists involved in the Palestine Liberation Organization’s A1 Fatah movement.

Although they did appeal, Israeli courts have rarely quashed a deportation order.

The proposed U.N. statement adds that “Israel’s decision to deport Palestinians at this time cannot possibly contribute to the achievement of a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East.”

Similar wording was used Monday by U.S. State Department spokeswoman Margaret Tutwiler.

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