Washington, January 21, 1969, 2342Z.
- ICAO Meeting on ME Aviation Incidents
- State 8296
- ICAO Council Jan 20 decided by vote of 11 (US) to 10 to consider ME issue in open meeting and, by vote of 14 to 12 (US), to confine its order of business to Lebanese complaint, thereby refusing to include Israeli counter-complaint. Latter vote followed statement by US rep that USG did not regard ICAO as appropriate or competent body to judge alleged responsibility of GOL for terrorist acts mentioned in Israeli letter of Jan 14.
- In ensuing discussion, Lebanese REP gave relatively moderate statement, mentioning sanctions but giving no specifics and indirectly suggesting expulsion of Israel from ICAO but not in such way as to indicate serious effort to this end. Israeli rep Rosenne (Deputy Israeli PermRep to UN) covered points made in SC debates, expressing [Page 2] strong regret and surprise ICAO Council had not included Israeli letter on order of business. Statements by Tunisia, Belgium, US, Spain and Argentina followed, with all but Tunisian rep favoring Council consideration of general problem of how to protect international civil aviation from all acts of force and violence. Council Pres Binaghi interrupted Tunisian from chair to say he would not countenance political discussion.
- Council agreed meet again Jan 21. Following completion of general statements we expect Council to adjourn until members have had time to consult to develop line of action. US rep already working with British, Australian and Canadian reps to develop draft resolution urging all states do utmost to prevent acts of violence against international civil aviation and establishing committee to study problem and recommend action designed to bring an end to such illegal interference.
- Posts requested not include Amcongen Montreal as addressee on tels this subject. Dept will pass them to US Rep ICAO as occasion demands.
- Source: National Archives, RG 59, Central Files 1967-69, POL 27 ARAB-ISR. Limited Official Use. Repeated to USUN. Drafted by Carolan; cleared in NEA/ARN and in substance in NEA/IAI and E/OA/AL; and approved by Brown.↩
- The Department informed the Embassies that the ICAO Council voted to consider the Lebanese complaint on the Beirut airport raid but to exclude the Israeli counter-complaint on the Athens El Al hijacking. Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, and the U.S. began to draft a resolution on prevention of violence against international civil aviation.↩