Turkey calls for Israeli pullout from Lebanon

Turkey has taken an attitude strongly critical of Israel's invasion of Lebanon, in line with its usually pro-Arab policy, but has also tried not to be involved in any way in the conflict.

The Turkish government has condemned the Israeli invasion and called for the immediate withdrawal of Israeli forces from Lebanon. It has also deplored the loss of civilian lives caused by the Israeli attacks.

Gen. Kenan Evren, the head of state, said the present situation aggravates the existing conflicts and increases the dangers in the area. He appealed for intensive efforts to secure Israel's withdrawal and the restoration of Lebanon's independence and territorial integrity.

One aspect of the fighting in Lebanon of particular interest to Turkey is the destruction of the major Palestine Liberation Organization camps and the capture by the Israelis of many foreign terrorists, including some Turks and Armenians.

Israeli sources said 26 Turkish terrorists have been captured by Israeli forces during their raids on PLO camps. Contacts between the Israeli and Turkish governments to provide the list of these terrorists are continuing - this has opened a new channel of communications between the two countries. The Turkish government has formally requested from Israel all the information available about these terrorists and any other details regarding Armenian militants trained in PLO camps. The Israeli authorities are expected to deliver the lists and other reports by the end of this week.

of 5 stories this month > Get unlimited stories
You've read 5 of 5 free stories

Only $1 for your first month.

Get unlimited Monitor journalism.