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September 15, 1978 - Image 19

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1978-09-15

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

Lebanese American Leader Basil Lauds
Israel's Aid to Lebanon Christian Forces

THURMONT, Md. (JTA)
— Robert Basil, president of
the American-Lebanese
League which claims a
membership of two million,

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strongly defended Israel's
aid to Christians in war-
torn - Lebanon and de-
nounced the "barbarous Sy-
rian occupation" of that
country at a press confer-
ence Tuesday.
At the same time, the
Shah of Iran, whose country
is also wracked by internal
strife, publicly assured Is-
rael of a continuing oil sup-

phNi-etw sruitei %Vag

leum needs.
Conflicting reports are
emerging from Iran on the
position of the Jewish corn-
munity in that country.
Maariv special correspon-
dent Shmuel Segev reported
from Teheran that Iranian
Jews are convinced that
their lives and property are
not endangered in the grow-
ing uprising by Moslem
religious elements and
others against the shah.
But Jews who arrived
in Tel Aviv Monday after
visiting relatives in Iran
said anti-Semitic leaflets
were being distributed
and that Iranian Jews re-
ceived anonymous letters
warning them to get out
of the country.
Basil, meanwhile, ap-
pealed to the conferees at
Camp David for a statement
affirming Lebanon's ter-
ritorial integrity and sover-
eignty as "a Western-
oriented democracy." He
declared that Syria" no
longer is a stabilizing" ele-
ment in Lebanon, but was
trying_to destroy the Chris-
tian community there and
-to "turn Lebanon into an-oc-
cupation state."
Basil said he was neither
pro-Zionist or pro-
Phalangist, but that he
"fully believes in a pluralis-
tic Lebanon" and the "re-
moval of all foreign ele-
ments from Lebanon. Re-
plying to a question, he said
"Palestinians are not
Lebanese."
In a related development,
Chief of Staff Gen. Rafael
Eytan reportedly told the
Knesset's Foreign Affairs
and Security Committee
that Soviet and Libyan
military experts are train-
ing Palestinians in Lebanon
in the use-of sophisticated
weaponry.
In Jerusalem, Bernice S.
Tannenbaum, president of
Hadassah, warned that
Syria might take advantage
of Israel's preoccupation
with peace negotiations at
Camp David and step up op-
erations in Lebanon that
would lead to an eventual
takeover and the conversion
of Lebanon into a Palesti-
nian state.
In Bonn, President Hafez
Assad of Syria received the
red carpet treatment when
he arrived in Bonn Monday
for a five-day official visit,
the first by a Syrian chief of
state to West Germany.
He was praised at a ban-
quet given in his honor by
President Walter Scheel,
who described Syria's role
in the Middle East conflict
as one "based on the
willingness to negotiate and

strive for peace."
Scheel said that Syria's
attitude "strengthened
Germany in its belief that
the conflict can be peace-
ably settled," but he ex-
pressed concern over
events in Lebanon where
the Syrian peace-keeping
force has been battling
the Christian militia for
the past two months. He

said hostilities in Leba-
non threatened not only
that country's existence
but the entire Middle
East.
Official sources in Bonn
are describing Assad as a
"reasonable man" who is
"open to persuasion" and
"not without influence on
more radical Arab states
like Algeria or Libya."

Friday, September 15, 1918 19

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