Search JTA's historical archive dating back to 1923

U.S. Condition for Supporting UN Resolution Calling for Israeli Troop Withdrawal from Lebanon

May 10, 1984
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The Reagan Administration indicated today that it would not support any United Nations Security Council resolution calling for the withdrawal of Israeli forces from Lebanon that did not include measures for safeguarding Israel’s northern borders.

“We understand Israel’s need for appropriate protection of its northern borders, ” State Department spokesman John Hughes said.

Hughes said the United States would look at any UN resolution as it came up. “But clearly, the question of the security of Israel’s northern borders would be a factor that we would have to take into account in a very significant way, ” he said.

“Our goal is the removal of all foreign forces from Lebanon, ” Hughes stressed, but he added that in any withdrawal resolution “we would expect there to be appropriate measures undertaken for the security of Israel’s northern borders.”


Meanwhile, Hughes gave little credence to a report that Palestine Liberation Organization chief Yasir Arafat called for direct negotiations with Israel last week.

“Mr. Arafat has said a number of things and has seemed to come up to the brink of formal statements on a number of occasions and then has backed away from them,” Hughes said.

He said the United States had made it “very clear” what if believed Arafat should do, which is to “recognize the sovereignty and independence of Israel and support” UN Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338. “When Mr. Arafat makes a clear, unequivocal accept- ance or endorsement” of these U.S. conditions, “then I think we will have a changed situation,” Hughes said. He noted that, up to now, Arafat’s remarks “are open to various kinds of interpretations.”

Recommended from JTA