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18 September 1986
Item 37 of the provisional agenda*
THE SITUATION IN THE MIDDLE EAST
Letter dated 17 September 1986 from the Permanent Representative of Israel
to the United Nations addressed to the Secretary-General
In recent weeks a new wave of Arab terror has shaken the world. From Karachi to Paris, these horrors deserve universal condemnation. More than any other recent event, however, the massacre in Istanbul stand out in its unmasking of the sheer joy of killing that motivates the terrorists.
The terrorists entered the "Neve Shalom" synagogue during the sabbath service and bolted the doors b.hind them. They fired automatic weapons. at the worshippers, slaughtering 21. According to one surviving eyewitness, the terrorists laughed while they restocked their weapons. Then they poured gasoline over the corpses and set them on fire.
The Istanbul massacre also lays bare the anti-Semitic nature of Arab terrorism. It is in fact merely the latest, and bloodiest, in a series of attacks on synagogues in recent years:
3 October 1980, Paris: A bomb exploded outside a synagogue on Rue Copernic killing 4 and wounding 5.
29 August 1981, Vienna: Two Arab terrorists armed with automatic pistols and hand grenades attack a synagogue, killing 2 people and wounding 20.
9 October 1982, Antwerp: A truck bomb explodes outside a synagogue, killing a two-year-old child and wounding 34 people.
7 August 1983, Johannesburg:
Bombs explode in a synagogue. Miraculously, no one was hurt.
5 January 1984, Argentina: Synagogues in Buenos Aires and Rosario are fire-bombed, causing much damage but no injuries.
22 July 1985, Copenhagen: Bombs explode in Scandinavia's oldest synagogue wounding 27 people.
Th. targets were all houses of worship; the victims chosen simply because they were Jews. There is a word that traditionally describe such attacks: that word is "pogrom". The Arab terrorists thus share the impulses of the worst racists in history. This is a clear indication of their true aim: to murder a people and a nation. The international community should vigorously repudiate such anti-Semitic atrocities. For its part, Israel will spare no effort to make clear that the days when Jews could be butchered with impunity are over.
I have the honour to request that this letter be circulated as an official document of the General Assembly, under item 37 of the provisional agenda, and of the Security Council.
) Benjamin NETANYAHU