UNITED NATIONS, N. Y. (Mar. 5)
Egypt must not return to Gaza, “in any shape or form,” Mrs. Golda Meir, Israel’s Foreign Minister, declared today. “We must be absolutely certain that Egypt cannot return to Gaza. Egypt has forfeited is rights under the 1949 armistice agreement. Egypt has voided those rights.
“We hope that the United Nations Emergency Force will be able to keep peace on the borders and give sufficient protection to our settlers, but the return of Egypt to Gaza is out of the question.”
Mrs. Meir made these statements today at a luncheon where she was the guest of honor of the United Nations Correspondents Association. The Association drew one of the largest audiences in its eight-year history for today’s event. The luncheon was tendered to Mrs. Meir prior to her return to Israel tomorrow.
The Israel Foreign Minister warned the world that Israel is ready once more to defend its security if it has to do so. She declared: “We cannot compromise with the security of our people. Without the assurance of security–the alternative is war. We hope, we assume, we expect that after all that has been said and done at the United Nations and elsewhere that the security of Israel now rests not only with Israel. We hope it will not be necessary again for Israel to take up arms. God forbid such an eventuality. But if it will become necessary we shall stand up to our responsibility.”