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Mapam and Mapai Parties Meet on Reorganization of Coalition Government

A decisive meeting between top-ranking representatives of the Mapai and the Mapam parties is scheduled to take place here tonight. At that time the left-wing Mapam party is expected to reply to Premier David Ben Gurion’s latest offer outlining the basis on which he would be willing to dissolve the present coalition and reorganize the Cabinet with leftist participation.

The demands which the Mapam has listed as the price of entering the government included: a public pledge that Israel will not join the North Atlantic Pact or the Marshall Plan; opposition to Jordan’s incorporation of the Arab part of Palestine in the Hashemite kingdom; and, support in the United Nations of all peace plans, including curtailment of the use of atomic weapons.

On domestic issues, the Mapam wants reduction in indirect taxes; nationalization of essential imports and of existing concessions, particularly the Dead Sea potash works; adoption of a national constitution ensuring the establishment of a secular state, with full guarantees of religious rights; and, development of a popular army, with strengthening of bonds between the armed forces and the agricultural population.

The executive committee of the centrist General Zionist Party is meeting today to consider Premier Ben Gurion’s offer to enter the government. It has been learned that the party will refuse unless it is assigned two portfolios in the Cabinet.

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