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Muslim Deportees Mark Seven Months in Exile

July 17, 1993

MARJ AL-ZOHOUR, Lebanon (AP) _ Palestinians deported by Israel marked seven months in exile in south Lebanon on Saturday with a protest march.

Many of the 396 deportees walked the main street of the camp then staged a one-hour rally.

The men, accused by Israeli of supporting Arab militants, have been stranded between Israeli and Lebanese army lines since Dec. 17. Lebanon refused to take them, saying it would not be a dumping ground for Israel’s castoffs.

Dr. Abdul-Aziz Rantisi, a spokesman for the deportees, appealed for the U.N. Security Council and other groups to press Israel for their repatriation.

″Where is the conscience of the international humanitarian bodies?″ he said.

Israel has defied a Security Council resolution ordering immediate repatriation of the men. Instead, it offered in February to take back 101 of the deportees immediately and the rest by year’s end.

The deportees rejected the offer, saying they must be allowed home as a group.

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