Monday, September 20, 1982

Military Action:

IDF begins pulling out troops from West Beirut under mounting world pressure; thousands of Palestinians flee camps in panic, fearing return of Phalange/Haddad militias to camps following IDF withdrawal, before Lebanese Army can restore calm; Phalange and Haddad forces sighted setting up own roadblocks in West Beirut.


Red Cross continues to recover bodies, 130 recovered so far, no mass graves opened yet.

Political Responses:

Israel/ Occupied Territories: Controversy grows as media report government officials were aware that civilians were being killed in camps 36 hours before they intervened (denied by government officials); Haaretz, Davar, Jerusalem Post, Maariv call for ouster of Sharon and/or Begin, convening of national board of inquiry into Israeli complicity in massacre; Begin's office concedes Cabinet gave advance approval for IDF to allow Phalange/Haddad militias to enter camps last week; Israeli President Navon calls for independent inquiry into the massacre, Begin favors only investigating commission; National Religious Party joins Navon in pressuring Begin to allow a full investigation; Labor, Mapam, Shinui and Peace Now call for mass rally in Tel Aviv on Saturday; Palestinian leaders voice outrage at massacre; Palestinian youth throw stones at Israeli vehicles, set fire to tires in Ramallah and Nablus, police disperse crowds with tear gas and rubber bullets with no casualties; many stores close in protest, are forced open by Israeli soldiers; school openings in occupied territories postponed for two weeks; over 40 representatives of West Bank and Gaza refugees occupy UNRWA Jerusalem office to protest food ration cuts announced Sept. 1, UNRWA Employees' Union joins protest.

Palestinians/ Lebanese: Palestine Central Council ends one-day meeting with statement condemning Israeli role in massacre, blaming Lebanese Army, US, France and Italy, and pledges to avenge killings; Camille Chamoun withdraws from race for Lebanese presidency as it becomes clear Amin Gemayel has votes to win.

Arab Governments: Egypt recalls ambassador to Israel but does not break diplomatic relations; Jordan's King Hussein accuses Israel of responsibility for massacre but urges positive Arab response to Reagan proposals, calls on PLO to join him to draw up federation plan along lines of Reagan proposal; emergency Arab League meeting in Tunis called at request of PLO delayed until tomorrow.

US and Other Counties: Reagan agrees to Lebanese request for return of US Marines, asks Israel to pull out of Beirut; Congress gives troubled support to decision, Weinberger doubts presence of Marines would have prevented massacre; several US Jewish leaders call for inquiry, demand that Israel cut all ties with Christian groups involved in massacre; USSR condemns Israel but blames US for "encouraging" Israel's "criminal aggression," proposes joint US-Soviet action to curb Israel; Indian Prime Minister Gandhi condemns massacre; 10-member European Community condemns massacre, demands Israeli withdrawal; Danish Foreign Minister meets with PLO leader Kaddoumi, says PLO must be associated with Middle East peace talks; Italian workers go on hour-long strike and attend rallies protesting massacre; Britain condemns massacre, demands Israeli withdrawal.