WASHINGTON (Mar. 13)
Israel Ambassador Abba Eban arrived here at noon today cutting short a Florida vacation to deal with the new Middle East crisis over the Gaza Strip. Mr. Eban is expected to confer with Undersecretary of State Christian Herter this afternoon.
Yesterday, Israeli Minister Reuven Shiloah called on Under-Secretary Herter and spent 40.inates with him in conference during which he expressed Israel’s concern over Egypt’s new intentions with regard to Gaza. Earlier, Mr. Shiloah called on Assistant Secretary of State William Rountree. Following a 40-minute meeting. Mr. Shiloah told reporters that the main purpose of the meeting was “to resume a discussion of issues engaging the two governments which have been in abeyance during the United Nations consideration of the tense security situation.”
A recommendation that the Suez Canal clearance be halted until the Egyptian Government gives “definite, dependable commitments” that the Canal will be open to ships of all nations including Israel was advanced today to Undersecretary Herter by Rabbi Phillip S. Bernstein, chairman of the American Zionist Committee for Public Affairs.
Rabbi Bernstein told Mr. Herter in a telegram that it would be “incongruous for the international community to clear the canal and to repair the damage caused by Nasser’s own sabotage in the absence of any assurances that Nasser will permit the Canal to remain an international waterway.” The Zionist leader also urged the Administration to exert leadership by direct diplomatic means and through the United Nations to resist the present actions by the Egyptian Government.