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Source: Department of Public Information (DPI)
16 October 1948
Department of Public Information
Press and Publications Bureau
Lake Success, New York

Press Release PAL/338
16 October 1948


(The following has been received at UN Headquarters from the UN Press Officer
in Haifa, relayed through Paris.)

The Chief of Staff of the United Nations Truce Supervision Headquarters, General William E. Riley, has ordered Jews and Egyptians to cease fire at 2:00 (GMT) today (16 October) in the Negev-Gaza area.

General Riley described present military operations there as a "grave breach of the truce" and declared that all military forces must return under the supervision of United Nations observers to the positions held by them at 12:00 noon (GMT) on 14 October.

A special UN investigation team returned to Haifa late yesterday from Gaza, where it has investigated the situation on the Egyptian side of the front, and left early today for Tel Aviv to investigate the Southern front situation on the Israeli side.

The increasing tension in the Gaza area coincided with renewed hostilities in Jerusalem, which recently had been calm. Observers in the Holy City report that after a relatively quiet night intensive hostilities started early this morning, with heavy machine-gun fire and mortar shelling from both sides.

Later this morning the Senior United Nations Observers in Jerusalem, Colonel George Millet, was fired on with a machine gun, allegedly by Arabs, from the Wall of the Old City. This incident occurred while Colonel Millet was riding with the United States Consul in a white UN sedan. Missing the two men only by inches, three rounds entered the car, which was flying the UN and white flags.

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