JERUSALEM (Nov. 4)
The Israel Government offered today to make peace with any lawful government of Egypt. The proposal was made publicly at a press conference by Dr. Walter Eytan, director-general of the Foreign Ministry and highest ranking permanent civil. servant in the ministry. For all practical purpose, he emphasized, the war is over for Israel.
The armistice agreement between Israel and Egypt is dead, Mr. Eytan declared, and Israel does not intend to revive it. Israel will not return to an arrangement which “served as a cloak for destructive activities such as murder, sabotage and arson,” he stated. For the first time in years, he stressed, there is an opportunity for new decisions. He expressed confidence that if Egypt makes peace with Israel the other Arab states will follow suit.
Commenting on the Iraqi-Syrian entrance into Jordan, Dr. Eytan said that though those forces have no business in Jordan “we will not attack, But we will repulse any attack on us. He expressed doubt that any or all three of the Arab states together would dare attack Israel.
The Israeli demands at a peace table with Egypt, he said, would include an end to sabotage and murder and a lifting of the blockade. Ending the blockade and boycott he pointed out, does not mean that Israel can force the Arabs to buy from it, but it does mean that shipping will be free to come to and from Israel via the Suez Canal and international air traffic will not bypass Israel in order to comply with the Arab boycott.
The future of the Sinai Peninsula, he continued, will be discussed at the peace table. Asked about the fate of the Arab refugees, Dr. Eytan asserted that this question could not be settled with Egypt alone and must be discussed with all the Arab states.
Dr. Eytan declared that Israel is returning to normal. Lending weight to his words was the fact that the authorities had already lifted the blackout before he met with the press.