• Short Summary

    he sudden annexation of the Golan Heights area by Israel has been roundly condemned by many speakers in a United Nations debate on the issue, and also by most West European countries.

  • Description

    BEIRUT, LEBANON (VISNEWS - MOHAMMED AWWAD)
    SV PAN Delegates standing and singing Palestinian song. (2 SHOTS)

    Background: he sudden annexation of the Golan Heights area by Israel has been roundly condemned by many speakers in a United Nations debate on the issue, and also by most West European countries. The Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) has added its weight to the attack on the Israeli move. Speaking at a rally held in Beirut, and organised by the Red Crescent section of the PLO, a spokesman criticised the Arab world for not having a united policy on the issue. He repeated the Palestinians' determination to defend what they see as their own land.

    SYNOPSIS: The enthusiastic rally was held to re-affirm Palestinian claims to the Golan Heights region. It was held on the same day that the UN Security Council called an emergency session to consider action against Israel.

    The main speaker at the rally was Abu Ayyad, otherwise known as Salah Khalaf, the deputy leader of the Fatah section of the PLO. He told the meeting there could be no compromise on the question of the Golan Heights. Israel offers the Palestinian people no option but to fight on and to refuse to recognise a country which, he claimed, was re-possessing more and more of the Palestinians' native homeland with each passing day. Israel was a country which only wanted peace on its own terms, he told his supporters. In his view, it was not the Israelis who were dispossessed, but the people of Palestinian. But Abu Ayyad reserved strong criticism for the Arab states, questioning whether their leaders were responsible enough to govern properly. Each day, he claimed, a new challenge was presented by Israel and the Arab leaders did nothing effective in response, every time Israel acted, he said, the Palestinians were left feeling frustrated because the Arab nations take no action.

    Observers agree that the Israeli annexation has created a real crisis for peace in the Middle Est. The move is understood to have shocked many leaders of Western Europe. And the United States has also said it was annoyed at the Israel action. From Washington, American officials have declared they would support a condemnation of Israel if it was not "too shrill", and if it did not call for sanctions against Israel. Syria has asked the Security Council to declare the decision by the Israeli Knesset null and void. Already, the annexation has been described by the US Secretary of Defence, Caspar Weinberger, as a violation of the Camp David agreement. The Golan Heights were taken by the Israeli Army during the war in 1967 but, since the Arab-Israeli war of 1973, have been controlled by the United Nations.

    Many of the former soldiers listening to the speech had been wounded during previous Arab-Israeli wars.

    After Abu Ayyad's speech, a group of Palestinian singers and musicians sang a traditional anthem.
    InitialsJS Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA42BOT5YYNUUPNFQHWSMPWE8EN
    Media URN:
    VLVA42BOT5YYNUUPNFQHWSMPWE8EN
    Group:
    Reuters - Including Visnews
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    17/12/1981
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Colour
    Duration:
    00:00:22:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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