Menu JTA Search

Spanish Envoy in U.S. Urges Relations Between Israel and Spain

The Spanish Ambassador today urged that Israel establish diplomatic relations with Spain and explained that Israel will be barred from participation in the forthcoming Mediterranean Olympic Games at Barcelona because Israel “did not participate” in the 1951 Olympics held in Alexandria, Egypt, Israel did not participate in the 1951 games in Egypt because it was impossible for it to do so owing to the Egyptian attitude toward Israel.

Ambassador Jose Maria de Arreilza was asked recently by chairman Emanuel Celler of the House Judiciary Committee to explain the exclusion of Israel from the Barcelona Olympics. In his reply to Rep Celler the Ambassador said “There was no deliberate exclusion of Israel, but what happened was simply that it had been agreed that the participant nations were to be only those that took part in 1951 in the first Mediterranean games celebrated in Alexandria Egypt As Israel did not participate in those games an invitation to the forthcoming games was not sent to her but there was no intention or desire to exclude her deliberately A routine formality was followed in inviting the participants “

Ambassador Arreilza said he believed “that this kind of misunderstanding will be avoided once Israel establishes diplomatic relations with our government These do not exist at present ” Israel has thus far refrained from establishing relations with Spain The Ambassador offered to meet in person with Rep Celler who indicated that he would see him but a time has not yet been set.

NEXT STORY