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Soviet Urges U.N. to Abolish Palestine Conciliation Commission

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The Soviet delegation at the United Nations today introduced a resolution at the U.N. Political Committee urging the abolishment of the Palestine Conciliation Commission, in view of the fact that “experience has shown that the Commission has not coped with its tasks of settling the questions at issue in Palestine.”

Speaking before the Political Committee, Ambassador Abba S, Eban, Israel’s chief delegate at the United Nations, suggested that perhaps a good offices committee, with the same membership, could replace the Conciliation Commission. Such a committee, he said, should act only if the parties involved ask for its help.

Otherwise, matters could be left to develop within the framework of the existing armistice agreements between Israel and the Arab states, Mr. Eban continued. He said that the Arab refusal to enter into any discussions with Israel is the principal obstacle in the path of an Arab-Israeli peace.

The representative of the Jewish State emphasized that Israel has offered several times to sit down with representatives of the Arab countries either singly or together, in Palestine or elsewhere, formally or informally–but all in vain.

“The Arab states and Israel never sat together without reaching agreement, but they never reached agreement without sitting together, ” Ambassador Eban declared. The seven Arab states, he said, pretend that Israel does not exist “There was no instance of any government refusing to recognize the statehood of a country which is a member of the United Nations, “he pointed out.

The Israeli delegate drew attention to the failure of the U.N. Conciliation Commission to gain acceptance by the Arab states of its statement of peaceful intentions. The Commission, he insisted, had not been dealing with two parties which wanted a settlement of the Arab-Israeli dispute. “It faced one party which obstinately opposed any settlement,” he emphasized.

Turning to the Arab claims that there was an economic crisis in Israel which threatens the entire Middle East, Mr. Eban said that in the past few weeks he had seen an industrial revolution in Israel which would bring about a balance of trade in the country. Commenting on Arab claims of alleged threats of Israel’s expansion, he declared that they were not only baseless but that they did not jibe with the Arab refusal to sign a non-aggression pact which Israel had offered so often.

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