The Security Council met in emergency session behind closed doors Friday to discuss a resolution sponsored by Arab and non-aligned nations criticizing Israel.
The Council president, British Ambassador Emyr Jones Parry, emerged from the meeting saying the resolution had not been formally introduced pending discussions in Geneva and other world capitals over the next two days.
Even so, the ambassador said the entire Council membership had agreed to warn Israel against its decision in principle to expel Mr. Arafat. "Council members expressed the view that removal of Mr. Arafat would be unhelpful and should not be implemented," he said.
Ambassador Jones Parry said that although the resolution had not been tabled, a number of Security Council members were ready to support it. The draft resolution would demand that Israel refrain from any act of deportation and to withdraw any threat to Mr. Arafat's safety.
In a statement released Friday, U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan noted an "increasingly grim" trend of development in the Middle East. He urged both sides to live up to their responsibilities under what is known as the "road map for peace".
Mr. Annan is in Geneva this weekend for talks on Iraq with foreign ministers of the five permanent Security Council members. But the Middle East is also likely to be a topic of discussion.