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Source: Department of Public Information (DPI)
2 September 1949
Department of Public Information
Press and Publications Bureau
Lake Success, New York

Press Release PAL/524
2 September 1949

(The following has been received at UN Headquarters from the
United Nations Press Officer in Jerusalem.)

The Israeli-Jordan Kingdom Mixed Armistice Commission decided, by majority vote, at a meeting in Jerusalem on Wednesday (31 August), that Israel has violated the Rhodes Armistice Agreement by expelling across the demarcation lines some 200 Arab inhabitants from the village of Wadi Fukin on 15 July.

Wadi Fukin is west of Bethlehem. It was formerly situated in "no man's land" but was transferred to Israel this summer under the Rhodes agreement. The matter was brought before the Mixed Armistice Commission by the Jordan Kingdom in a complaint on 16 July.

At Wednesday's meeting, Israel contended that the expelled inhabitants had infiltrated Wadi Fukin only after the establishment of the armistice demarcation lines, and therefore had lived there illegally. Israel further alleged that the expulsion of these inhabitants to Arab Palestine was carried out according to an agreement concluded between the Arab and Israeli local commanders in that area. However, the majority of the Mixed Armistice Commission did not accept the Israeli contention on the basis of available evidence, submitted by United Nations observers.

The Mixed Armistice Commission therefore decided that the expulsion had violated the armistice agreement and that the expelled Arabs should be returned to Wadi Fukin within a week. This decision was reached on the basis of Paragraph 3 of Article 4 of the General Armistice Agreement.

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