BONN (Mar. 27)
Dr. Erich Ollenhauer, leader of the German Social Democratic Party and possible successor to the Federal Chancellorship after next September’s elections, called again today for the establishment of diplomatic relations between West Germany and Israel.
Dr. Ollenahauer made his statement upon returning from Israel where, for a week, he was a guest of its government’s leading political party, the Mapai. “Both my party and I have, for a long time, advocated the establishment of normal relations with Israel,” he told a Jewish Telegraphic Agency correspondent, and I am convinced that the Federal Government will soon make a positive decision in this matter for the benefit of the peoples of the two countries, Germany and Israel.” During his visit to Israel, he stated, it was his “impression that, in spite of certain difficulties, the same feeling exists there.”
(Prior to emplaning at Lydda Airport late yesterday, Dr. Ollenhauer told newsmen that he was happy to have had the opportunity of visiting Israel and intended to strengthen relations between Bonn and Jerusalem.)