WASHINGTON (Oct. 19)
Israel Ambassador Abba Eban today asked Henry A. Byroade, Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs, to have the United States Government hear Israel’s side of the story of Arab-Israel friction before formulating whatever policy America will pursue at the United Nations Security Council. Mr. Eban today made this known after a discussion with Sec. Byroade at the State Department which lasted for one hour and fifteen minutes.
Reporters asked Mr. Eban for comment on reports circulating among official sources here that the United States has temporarily cut off economic aid to Israel as a measure of pressure. Mr. Eban would neither deny nor confirm these reports and said he had “no comment. “
Mr. Eban said he discussed with Mr. Byroade security problems in the Near East in the light of the forthcoming discussion at the Security Council. He said he discussed Israel’s hope that members of the Security Council would take a “balanced view” of the Arab-Israel situation and understand Israel’s “unique position ” with exposed frontiers and “tragic loss of life. ” He noted that 421 persons were killed or wounded by Arab infiltrators in the last few years and that recently there were especially heavy casualty lists. The “tragic and regrettable” frontier developments, said Mr. Eban, resulted from Arab hostility and terrorism affecting every home in Israel.
ISRAEL’S STORY AT U.N. MAY “SURPRISE THE WORLD”
Mr. Byroade was given notice for the first time that Israel would present through the Security Council the full story of its security position. Mr. Eban said this story would interest and “perhaps surprise the world. ” He said the story would reveal the “enormous difficulties and tension” of life in Israel since the Palestine war ended. This is the story Mr. Eban wanted the United States Government to consider before formulating its policy at the Security Council.
The Ambassador pointed out that Israel has taken the initiative in advocating interstate cooperation for irrigation and power development involving Israel and the Arab states and that this still was Israel’s position. Therefore, said the Ambassador, he regretted press reports alleging his government was opposed to such development projects. He recalled “instance after instance” in which his government urged cooperation with the Arabs and branded as inaccurate a press report which today said Israel refused to give up certain territory in the interest of regional development and progress.
Mr. Eban said Israel’s story would be told to the Security Council before the end of the week. He was accompanied by Reuven Shiloah, Israel Minister Plenipotentiary.