GENEVA (May. 22)
Israel offered to join with the Arab states in a war on disease in the Middle East this week, but its offer is likely to meet with continued rebuff from the Arabs, who still refuse to sit with the Jewish State in the regional commission of the United Nations World Health Organization.
Israel’s offer came at the ninth World Healthy Assembly meeting here, when Dr. S. Btesh, director general of the Israel Ministry of Health, welcomed the convening of a conference on malaria to be held soon in Athens. “Our country,” he said, “is deeply interested in the eradication of malaria and we hope this conference will pave the way for cooperation by the various member states within our Middle East region in a joint effort to eradicate this ancient scourge.”
Dr. Btesh brought the offer even closer to home when he reported on the success of an Israel produced polio vaccine and added: “We expect to have enough vaccine on hand to embark on a nationwide campaign of immunization before the end of the year. Israel will be glad to place the facilities of its virus laboratories at the disposal of member states of the Organization, both inside and outside the region. In a year’s time we hope to be in a position to undertake vaccine production for the whole area.” Arab representatives, however, remained silent.