Britain Reported Seeking Arab-israel Rapprochement in Secret Talks

Great Britain is carrying on secret negotiations in an effort to achieve peace between Israel and the Arab states. That was virtually admitted here today by Anthony Nutting, new chairman of the British delegation at the UN and Britain’s new Minister of State for Foreign Affairs.

Mr. Nutting, who headed the British negotiators for the agreement with Egypt on the Suez Canal, held his first press conference here today, and nearly half of the period was devoted to the Middle East problem. “Britain is trying to do what it can in the Middle East,” Mr. Nutting said, “and there is a better chance of success if we keep it under cover.”

Asked if he would reveal exactly what Britain is doing overtly, Mr. Nutting said: “The Anglo-Egyptian agreement on the Suez Canal is an overt sign of Britain’s new influence in the Middle East. It is the influence, if you will, of the honest broker and we are using it quietly without publicity in the hope that we might possibly bring the parties together. Now we may find it easier to uphold the Tripartite Declaration which guarantees the frontiers of the Arab states and Israel. The Arab-Israel dispute unfortunately still continues. But we feel we have not done too badly in our effort in this area.”

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