Question of Palestine home
14 April 1980
UNITED NATIONS Distr.
COUNCIL 14 April 1980
LETTER DATED 14 APRIL 1980 FROM THE PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF
ISRAEL TO THE UNITED NATIONS ADDRESSED TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE
Further to my statement in the Security Council this morning, 14 April 1980, I wish to bring to your attention the following detailed information about the activities of the terrorist PLO in southern Lebanon since the establishment of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL).
It will be recalled that when UNIFIL was set up its area of operation was completely free of PLO terrorists - a fact recently attested to again by the Commander of UNIFIL, Major General Emmanuel A. Erskine, in an interview in the
of London published on 11 March 1980.
Immediately after the first stage of the withdrawal of the Israel Defence Forces from southern Lebanon on 30 April 1978, PLO terrorists stepped up activities to return to the locations which they had held previously. Within a short period of time as many as 200 PLO terrorists had returned to the area under UNIFIL’s control.
Today the terrorists’ presence in UNIFIL’s area of operation is, for all intents and purposes, institutionalized and recognized by the United Nations, which admits to having about 400 armed terrorists in UNIFIL’s area of operation.
Israel estimates that the number of terrorists in that area is somewhat larger and may be as high as 700.
Moreover, as the Secretary-General has indicated in his reports on UNIFIL’s activities during 1979 (S/13384 of 8 June 1979 and S/13691 of 14 December 1979), there has been a marked increase in PLO attempts to infiltrate UNIFIL’s area of operation, a serious phenomenon which was continued in the first quarter of this year.
The bulk of the terrorists in UNIFIL’s area belong to Fatah. However, armed terrorists belonging to all organizations operating under the PLO umbrella are also to be found in the area.
This, of course, is by no means the end of the story. There are some 1,500 PLO terrorists under arms in the “Tyre pocket”, south of the Litani River, reaching within eight miles of Israel’s northern border, and another 10-12,000 PLO terrorists in areas directly north of the Litani, in Nabatiyya and in the vicinity of Sidon, not to speak of Beirut and Tripoli.
As I indicated in my statement this morning, the terrorists in UNIFIL’s area of operation carry out a variety of activities. They have established a system of permanent positions and roadblocks. Not only do they intimidate local Lebanese villages and villagers and harass UNIFIL in the performance of its duties, but they are also engaged in the rebuilding of their military infrastructure in the area and in attempts to smuggle weapons and ammunition into Israel by means of special couriers.
It goes without saying that they also attempt to launch missions of indiscriminate murder against civilians in Israel, setting out from Lebanon through UNIFIL’s lines.
The group of five terrorists which attacked the children’s nurseries in Kibbutz Misgav Am on 7 April 1980, set out from the hills in the Sluki sector in Lebanon in an area under UNIFIL’s control.
Since the completion of the withdrawal of the Israel Defence Forces from Lebanon on 13 June 1978 until 8 April 1980, PLO criminals have perpetrated 44 acts of terror against Israel civilians from Lebanese territory. Most of these criminal acts took the form of heavy shelling of civilian centres in northern Israel, using Katyusha rockets and mortar fire. There have also been eight penetrations from Lebanese territorial waters and six crossings overland from Lebanon.
In only one of these cases was an attempt made on a military target in Israel.
Almost invariably, the PLO has immediately bragged of its responsibility for these atrocities, more often than not on its radio or through its news agency in Lebanon.
In a long series of letters, the latest of which was circulated as S/13876 of 7 April 1980, Israel has brought all of these barbarous acts to the attention of the Security Council and the Secretary-General, but to no avail. As a result of measures taken by Israel it has been possible to foil or abort at least 10 PLO attempts against civilians in Israel in the course of last year.
The precise deployment of PLO terrorists in southern Lebanon is described in the annex to this letter.
I have the honour to request that this letter and its attachment be circulated as a document of the Security Council.
) Yehuda Z. BLUM
Permanent Representative of Israel
to the United Nations
PLO Deployment in southern Lebanon
Approximately 6,000 terrorists are located in south Lebanon (between the Israeli border and the Zaharani River). The terrorists in south Lebanon have a common umbrella command, headed by Haj Ismael - a “Fatah” member.
The terrorists in south Lebanon are deployed in the following manner:
- Territory in which UNIFIL forces are deployed: approximately 700 terrorists
- Fatahland region: approximately 1,500 terrorists
- Tyre region: approximately 1,500 terrorists
- Nabatiye region: approximately 600-700 terrorists
- Coastal region (between Litani and Zaharani): approximately 1,500 terrorists
Terrorist Deployment inside UNIFIL territory
Approximately 700 terrorists are deployed in 40 positions situated within UNIFIL territory. UNIFIL personnel are not permitted to enter the terrorist positions (within a radius of 500 metres).
The primary concentration of terrorists is located in the central district of the Jouziya-Deir Ammess-Gama triangle. Each of these locations contains 10-30 terrorists.
Each terrorist position contains a “Landrover” jeep, and some positions have 82 mm mortars and 85 mm field artillery (of Russian make).
Approximately 1,500 terrorists are deployed in the region, belonging mainly to Fatah. The area is vital for terrorist deployment and has been strengthened during the year with additional forces. Additional forces in the region consist of several dozen who belong to the “Rejectionist Front” organizations. In addition, pro-Syrian forces (“Saiqa” and Jibril’s “Front”) are also deployed in the area.
Approximately 600-700 terrorists are deployed in the region and have recently undertaken a fortification effort. Nabatiye heights provides a topographical vantage point of the south Lebanon belt, and is therefore important to the terrorists. The forces in the area belong primarily to Fatah - from the Kastel brigade. Similarly, several dozen terrorists belonging to “Saiqa” and “Rejectionist Front” groups are deployed in the area.
Approximately 500 terrorists are deployed in the region, belonging mostly to Fatah forces from the Yarmuk and Kastel brigades. The primary importance of the region is in maintaining fire-contact and an observation post of Israel territory and the south Lebanon belt, in order to maintain territorial continuity for control between Fatahland and Nabatiye. Approximately 400 terrorists from the Fatah organization and about 100 terrorists from the”Rejectionist” organizations are situated in the area.
Approximately 1,500 terrorists belonging to all the organizations are situated mainly in the vicinity of Tyre and surrounding refugee camps. The region is utilized as a logistics hinterland for the terrorists located in territory under UNIFIL control. A number of bases are deployed in the area to be used by terrorists embarking on terror strikes against Israel.
The region extending from the Litani to the Zaharanie contains approximately 1,500 terrorists belonging primarily to Fatah, Saiqa and the PLA. The region is utilized as a logistical hinterland for supply depots, arms, and rear headquarters. Fatah’s mechanized battalion (of AOC’s and armored vehicles) is also deployed in the area.
Terrorist Bases and Artillery and Mortar Positions
in South Lebanon
Ras-el-’Ayn - (approximately 5 kms. south of Tyre); base of the “People’s Struggle Front”.
North of Tyre - “Fatah” military office.
Insariya Junction - (approximately 16 kms. north of Tyre); operations base for “Fatah”.
Mazraat Saari - (approximately 14 kms. north of Tyre); “Fatah” base and storage depot.
Adloune Junction - (approximately 15 kms. North of Tyre); base for “Saiqa” organization.
Ein Kinyeh - (Fatahland region, approximately 8 kms. north of Har Dov).
Mazraat el Akabiya - (coastal region, between Litani and Zaharani Rivers), “Saiqa” base.
Mazraat el Wasta - (approximately 18 kms. north of Tyre and 2 kms. north of the Kassamea bridge); regional headquarters for “Fatah”.
Ras-e-Chaq - (approximately 20 kms. north of Tyre); Saiqa base.
Tyre - central headquarters for the terrorists. Several “Fatah” command headquarters are located in Tyre (George Habash’s headquarters, supply depots, recruitment offices, and centres for terrorist activity.
Artillery and Mortar Positions
Approximately 70 terrorist artillery guns of various types are spread out in the area of south Lebanon. These guns are used to shell Israeli settlements on Israel’s northern border, as well as the Christian enclaves in southern Lebanon.
The terrorists position themselves among the civilian villagers and from there they depart on their terrorist missions.
Following is a general list of areas in which the terrorists position their artillery:
Nebatiye - approximately 10 kms. north of Metulla
Tibnite - approximately 8 kms. north of Meatily
Qlaile - approximately 13 kms. north of Adamit
Rachidiye - approximately 4 kms. south of Tyre
Annam - approximately 6 kms. north of Metulla
Beaufort - approximately 5 kms. north of Metulla
Mazraat Jimjim - approximately 4 kms. North of the Kassameya bridge
E-Znayak - approximately 28 kms. south of Shetula
Reihan - approximately 18 kms. north of Shetula
West of Wadi El-Ash - Fatahland
Burj El-Hawa - approximately 5 kms. north of Tyre
Mahmoudiye - approximately 10 kms. north of Tyre
Types of Artillery, guns, mortars, rocket launchers
The terrorists deploy a variety of artillery pieces:
- 57 mm gun; range 8.4 km. Russian manufacture.
- 85 mm gun; range 15.km. Russian manufacture.
- 105 mm gun; range 11 km. American manufacture, captured from the Lebanese army during the Lebanese Civil War (1975-1977).
- 122 mm gun (D-30); range 11.8 km. Russian manufacture
- 155 mm gun; range 17.7 km. French manufacture.
In addition the terrorists possess various types of mortars: 60 mm, 82 mm, 120 mm, 160 mm.
The terrorists also use rocket launchers (Katyusha rockets) for shelling Israeli settlements. There are a variety of rocket launchers: 122 mm, 130 mm, 240 mm, - all of Russian manufacture. The terrorists also use 107 mm rocket launchers, manufactured by North Korea. All the rocket launchers are mobile.