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Israel Pledges Unconditionally to Withdraw Troops from Egypt

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Israel today pledged unconditionally to withdraw its forces from Egypt as soon as satisfactory arrangements are made in connection with the establishment of the United Nations emergency police force. The pledge, received by Secretary General Dag Hammarskjold from Israel’s Foreign Minister Golda Meir this evening, was interpreted by the Secretary General as meaning also that Israel accepts the establishment and functioning of the newly created UN police force.

At 6:27 P. M. Mr. Hammarskjold read a letter from Mrs. Meir sent to him by the head of Israel’s delegation here, Abba Eban. Mrs. Meir’s letter reads as follows.

“I thank you for your cable of November 5 and also of yesterday transmitting the two resolutions passed by the special emergency session of the General Assembly. I have the honor to inform you on behalf of the Government of Israel that the Government of Israel will willingly withdraw its forces from Egypt immediately upon the conclusion of satisfactory arrangements with the United Nations in connection with the emergency international force.

“At the same time and without prejudice to this undertaking. I wish to state that, while, as a result of the Sinai operation, we have succeeded in destroying many of the fedayeen gangs and the bases from which they were planned and directed, we must repeat one urgent request to the United Nations to call upon Egypt, which has consistently maintained that it is in a state of war with Israel, to renounce that position, to abandon its policy of boycott and blockade, to cease the sending into Israel of murder gangs and in accordance with its obligations under the United Nations Charter to live at peace with member states to enter into direct peace negotiations with Israel.”

After reading Mrs. Meir’s statement, Mr. Hammarskjold said: “I want to make two points so there will be no misunderstanding. There are certain hopes and wishes and demands expressed here by the Israel Government. But there is no condition as to the first part of the letter. It is self-explanatory. The letter from the Israel Foreign Minister also must be ready with emphasis on that part of the declaration which refers to the United Nations force. I want to point out also,” Mr. Hammarskjold concluded, “that we have now arrived at a point where a new phase should begin.”

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