Israel Defence Minister Ariel Sharon told a judicial committee of inquiry into the massacre of Palestinians in Beirut that he did not have a specific government approval to authorise the entry of Lebanese militiamen into the refugee camps.
Jerusalem: GV PAN Israeli Defence Minister Ariel Sharon arrives for inquiry
SV PAN Sharon enters conference room and sits down
GV Inquiry members enter and sit down
CU & GV ZOOM INTO SCU Sharon and inquiry members seated (2 SHOTS)
Israel: GV & SVs Speaker at rally organised by Israeli Communist Party as people look on (4 SHOTS)
PART EUROVISION RECORDING
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Background: Israel Defence Minister Ariel Sharon told a judicial committee of inquiry into the massacre of Palestinians in Beirut that he did not have a specific government approval to authorise the entry of Lebanese militiamen into the refugee camps. Mr. Sharon was speaking on the first day's session of the inquiry in Jerusalem on October 23. The minister, as the architect of the June Israeli invasion of Lebanon, fidgeted as he faced a three-man commission. He said he gave the go-ahead for the militia to enter the Sabra and Chatila camps at a meeting of generals on September 14. Mr. Sharon said that the Lebanese Christian militiamen were allowed into the camps on a mission to rout Palestinian guerrillas and that Israeli troops were not sent in case they suffered casualties. The minister emphatically denied that he had expected the pro-Bashir Gemayel militiamen to go on the rampage after their leader's assassination. In Israel, the massacre was remembered at a rally organised by Rakah (the Israeli Communist Party), the Committee Against the War in Lebanon and the Israeli-Palestinian Peace Council. More than 700 Israeli Arabs, Druze, and Jews gathered to mark the 40th day since the massacres.