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Arab Note to Germany on Israel Leaves Door Open for Talks

The Arab states, which threatened to break off economic relations with West Germany if the German-Israeli reparations agreement is ratified by the Bonn Parliament, left the door open for diplomatic talks on this subject, it was revealed today following the publication last night of the full text of the note which the Arab League government sent to the Bonn Government.

Meanwhile, it was announced today that the West German Government will send delegations to Arab capitals to negotiate “problems arising from the conclusion and execution” of the German-Israeli pact. The announcement was made apparently to appease the Arabs and to comply with their request for “diplomatic conversations” as expressed in their note. The text of the Arab note reads:

The treaty between the government of the German Federal Republic and Israel represents the most serious menace to the existence of the Arab states, including Egypt. The German government must know that the Arab states cannot disregard the huge assistance which the Federal Republic is rendering to a state with which they are at war and that, in defense of their lives, they are obliged to defend themselves by every means.

“All urgent representations of the Arab states through diplomatic channels and also by means of a special delegation sent by the Arab League to Bonn appeared not to have succeeded in inducing the government of the Federal Republic to abstain from ratifying the treaty or at least to declare definitely that ratification would not take place before diplomatic conversations with the Arab League on the subject have been concluded.

“There is no doubt that the execution of the German-Israeli treaty can conform neither with the principle of neutrality nor with the principle of friendship. In view of the serious situation so created by the intention of the government of the Federal Republic to ratify the German-Israeli treaty, the Arab states might feel themselves obliged immediately to break off all economic relations with the Federal Republic. They also reserve to themselves the right to take appropriate measures to safeguard their own interests in case of ratification.

“These measures, upon which the states of the Arab League have unanimously decided in detail, will have the effect of impairing in the most detrimental way the economic relations between the Arab states and the Federal Republic which have developed satisfactorily during the last year. Moreover, they will endanger the traditional friendship existing between the Arabs and German people.

“As the Arab states, however, hope that they will not be obliged to take any measure of the kind, they expect the Federal Republic will immediately make a move in accordance with the offer to start conversations through diplomatic channels with the Arab League states,” the note concludes.

Trade unions in Lebanon have asked the unions in West Germany to intervene against ratification of West Germany’s reparations agreement with Israel, it was reported here today. The report said that the Lebanese unionists threatened to institute a country-wide boycott of all German goods if their demand was not heeded.

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