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Ronald Reagan Administration: 11th Message to Congress on the U.S. Sinai Support Mission

(April 15, 1981)

To the Congress of the United States:

I am pleased to transmit herewith the Eleventh Report of the United States Sinai Support Mission. It covers the Mission's activities during the six-month period ending April 1, 1981. This report is provided in accordance with Section 4 of Public Law 94-110 of October 13, 1975.

The Sinai Support Mission was established in January 1976 to implement the United States Proposal in the September 1975 Second Sinai Disengagement Agreement to install and operate a tactical early warning system in the Sinai Peninsula. The United States continued to operate the early warning system until January 25, 1980, under the 1979 Egyptian-Israeli Peace Treaty.

Because it was not possible to gain United Nations Security Council agreement to assume responsibility for supervising the security arrangements called for by the Peace Treaty, the United States agreed during September 1979 talks with Egypt and Israel to monitor adherence to the Treaty's military limitations. Verification inspections, conducted by the Sinai Field Mission, began in April 1980 and will continue until April 25, 1982, the scheduled date for total Israeli withdrawal from the Sinai.

My Administration has initiated bilateral discussions with both Parties on the security arrangements to be implemented in the Sinai following Israel's final withdrawal. The United States intends to carry out its commitment to ensure the establishment and maintenance of an acceptable alternative multinational force if it proves impossible for the United Nations to support the security arrangements under the Treaty. We share the desire of both Parties to move forward expeditiously on this question. We will keep the Congress fully informed and will consult as our discussions of this matter progress.

Funding of the Sinai Support Mission for Fiscal Year 1981 is authorized under Chapter 6, Part II of the Foreign Assistance Act, "Peacekeeping Operations," at $16 million. For Fiscal Year 1982, only $10 million is being requested, a level that will fund both the Mission's operations during its final months and the projected costs of its phaseout after April 25, 1982.

Our nation has contributed substantially to the promotion of peace in this critical part of the Middle East, and the Congress can be proud of the accomplishments of the Sinai Support and Field Missions. I am counting on your continued support for this aspect of our efforts to achieve a lasting peace in the Middle East.

The White House,
April 15, 1981.

Sources: Public Papers of the President