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Palestinian Hang-Glider Raid Decried

December 10, 1987|From Reuters

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates — The Emirates' president, in remarks published Wednesday, voiced the first Arab criticism of a Palestinian hang-glider attack on Israel and said it was detrimental to Arabs.

"For the Palestinians, the attack is part of their duty because their land is occupied. But for the Arabs, it is more detrimental than advantageous," Sheik Zayed ibn Sultan al Nuhayan told the Lebanese magazine Al Hawades.

A Palestinian guerrilla flew a motorized hang-glider into northern Israel on Nov. 25, killing six soldiers at an army camp before being shot to death.

Arab states widely lauded the attack, the deadliest in almost a decade. Responsibility was claimed by the pro-Syrian Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command. Israel blamed Syria and vowed to retaliate.

"Intensified Israeli threats against Syria show the disadvantages of the attack surpass its advantages," Zayed said. "Just think of the losses Syria might suffer in a confrontation with Israel."

Zayed's criticism indicates growing Arab disenchantment in the conflict with Israel, political analysts said.

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