NEW YORK (Dec. 1)
The “fruitful collaboration” of Israel and France in the peaceful uses of atomic energy was highlighted here tonight by Pierre Mendes-France, former Premier of France, in a speech read for him at the 12th annual dinner of the Weizmann Institute of Science at Rehovoth, Israel. The dinner was attended by some 1,500 guests who paid $250 per plate.
M. Mendes-France, who was forced to cancel his plans to address the dinner personally by the current French political crisis which required his presence in Paris, expressed his personal regrets to the diners in a direct radio broadcast. However, at his request, his prepared address was read by Claude Bernheim, former pilot in the Free French Air Force and a friend of the former Premier.
Touching upon the agreement on atomic energy between France and Israel, M. Mendes-France said: “In 1953, France signed an agreement on atomic energy with Israel. As a result of this pact, France obtained the technical assistance developed by scientists at the Weizmann Institute in two fields: that of extracting uranium from low grade ores, and that of producing heavy water. In return, we have on several occasions welcomed Israeli scientists who have come to France to pursue their studies. In all these fields, we are engaging in fruitful collaboration.”
Dr. Nahum Goldmann, chairman of the Jewish Agency, paid tribute to M. Mendes-France as “one of the most exciting and provocative figures in international affairs.” Dr. Goldmann, stressing the importance of the Weizmann Institute of Science as an effective instrument for peace in the Middle East, said that “cultural strength is a powerful weapon for national survival.” ###wey D. Stone, chairman of the board of governors of the Weizmann Institute, presented to M. Mendes-France, in absentia, an Honorary Fellowship, “in recognition of the cooperation in the realm of science and progress between the great Republic of France and the young State of Israel.”
Ambassador Abba Eban said that Israel, which represents a system of values and associations which the world should be zealous to conserve, was in danger. “We wish ardently for a peace founded on mutuality and reciprocity,” said Mr. Eban. “But there is no sign or portent of any serious peaceful intent in the Arab world outside the realm of newspaper speculation.”