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General Zionist Leader in Knesset Urges Israel to Remain Neutral in East-west Dispute

Dr. Fritz Bernstein, Minister for Commerce and General Zionist deputy in the Knesset, declared in the Israeli Parliament today during the course of a debate on the Jewish State’s foreign policy that his party stands for neutrality in the East-West dispute. The debate is expected to continue next week with Foreign Minister Moshe Sharett replying on Monday to criticism of the government’s policies.

Dr. Bernstein emphasized that the cause of Israel’s present “political ebb” is the lack of an information and propaganda service, brought about by a weakening of these services for political reasons. He also demanded that the Israeli Government notify the Arab states that independence in the Near East is not possible without a strong Israel and that it is necessary for them to modernize their economic structures–a task, he added, which they could not achieve alone.

Meyer Vilner, Communist deputy, criticized Israel’s foreign policy for not stating openly “what was known to all the world–that Britain and the U.S. are responsible for the failure of the Syrian armistice talks and the Lausanne peace parleys.”