Mideast situation/Palestine question/Truce violation – Letter from Egypt


I have the honour to inform you the Zionist's forces have launched a new attack, assuming most serious proportions, against Egyptian Positions in the Negeb.

El Arish and Rafah aerodromes, within Egyptian territory, were heavily bombed from the air, so was Khan Yunis and Al Faluja. Zionist naval craft shelled Egyptian Coastal positions.

While Al Faluja, Deir El Balah, and Khan Yunis are also being attacked by land forces, heavy Zionist concentrations of all arms have massed all along the Egyptian Positions.

I have been instructed by my Government to report this large scale attack to the Security Council and request an urgent meeting to be held; with a view to putting an end to this intolerable and rapidly deteriorating situation.

According to the information available to the Egyptian Government, the Zionist as they have repeatedly done before, are now attempting still another "fait accompli" much more serious in proportion that anything ventured in the past.

In demanding immediate action by the Security Council, I find it incumbent upon me to invite Your Excellency's attention to the following:

(a) The records of the meeting of the Security Council in connexion with the Palestinian question, and those of its Committee appointed by the resolution of 4 November 1948 bear clear evidence of the Zionists persistent policy of violating the truce in Palestine with a view to gaining political and military advantage in defiance of the Security Council's orders and decisions.

The same records bear, furthermore, undeniable evidence of the Zionist's refusal to implement the resolution of the Council of 4 November 1948.

(b) According to that resolution, if either party failed to withdraw those of their forces which had advanced beyond the positions held in 14 October 1948, within whatever time limit fixed by the Acting Mediator, the Committee would study as a matter of urgency and report to the Security Council on further measures to be taken under Chapter VII of the Charter.

(c) The Committee, as Your Excellency is aware, has hardly done anything beyond listening occasionally to the parties concerned, or the Acting Mediator.

In spite of the fact that the 19 November 1948, has been fixed by the Acting Mediator as the dead line for the withdrawal of troops which had advanced beyond positions held on 14 October 1948, and although it was abundantly clear that the Zionists committed new violations of the truce the Committee has not so far presented any report to the Security Council, or made any recommendations as stipulated in the resolution of the 4 November 1946.

(d) The continued deterioration of the situation in Palestine cannot reasonably be denied, nor con there be any doubt that the Zionists have been violating the truce, and defying the orders of the Security Council.  In this connexion, I leave to state that it does not seem to me that the matter has been taken up either by the Security Council, or by its Committee in a manner commensurate with its seriousness and urgency.

(e) It must be pointed out that the Zionists have not only refused to withdraw their forces from positions which used to be held by Egyptian i troops prior to 14 October 1948, but are now using them, with considerable reinforcements, against Egyptian Army positions.

Zionist attacks and preparations for attack are not being regularly reported to the Security Council by United Nations Observers, partly due to the fact that their work is being obstructed by Zionists who often deny them access to scenes of operations.

Meanwhile the Security Council has been unduly withholding consideration of, and action on, Zionist violations of the truce.

We consider it, however, the right of every state member of the United Nations, particularly under circumstances of such seriousness, to have the Council convene for appropriate action.

I would like to add that the Zionists are evidently attempting to take special advantage of the holidays, hoping, that the Council will not be promptly convened, and that in the meantime they will have occupied more territory and faced the Council with another "fait accompli".

(Signed) M. FAWZI
Permanent Representative of Egypt


Document symbol: S/1151
Document Type: Letter
Document Sources: Security Council
Country: Egypt
Subject: Armed conflict, Ceasefire, Incidents, Peace proposals and efforts
Publication Date: 24/12/1948

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