JERUSALEM (Jan. 23)
Prime Minister David Ben Gurion told Soviet Premier Nikolai Bulganin–in a lengthy note the text of which was made public here today–that Israel has a strong desire to establish closer economic and cultural relations with Moscow, At the same time, he reiterated Israel’s adherence to the principles of the Eisenhower Doctrine for the Middle East as a most suitable expression of Israel’s aims to strengthen universal peace and improve international relations.
Premier Ben Gurion’s note, handed to Soviet Ambassador Alexander Abramov on Monday, replied to the note sent Israel by Soviet Premier Bulganin last month in connection with Moscow’s propaganda campaign for achieving world peace. The reply emphasized that the Israel Government expresses “full agreement with the Soviet Government regarding most of the constructive principles” contained in the Soviet note, but quoted extensively from the letter which the Israel Government sent on May 7, 1957, to James P. Richards, who toured the Middle East as President Eisenhower’s special envoy on behalf of the Eisenhower Doctrine.
The Israel reply to Premier Bulganin’s note expressed “desire to cooperate with the Soviet Government and all other friendly governments” to achieve the aims listed in the Israel letter to Mr. Richards. As a small country, the reply said, Israel “abstains from expressing opinions regarding the causes of international tension, although not necessarily because Israel agrees with all points in the Soviet note on this issue.” However.Premier Ben Gurion added, Israel concurred in the Soviet assumption that Israel wanted with all its strength to prevent any new war and to strengthen peace.
“Israel believes that peace is indivisible,” Mr. Ben Gurion continued, “and therefore peace must be maintained everywhere for any small or local war is likely to spread into a worldwide conflagration.”
SAYS MOSCOW COULD HELP BRING ABOUT ARAB-ISRAEL PEACE
“Israel wholeheartedly welcomes the soviet Government’s opinion that relations among nations must be based on the mutual maintenance of sovereignty, territorial integrity, non-aggression and non-interference in internal affairs,” the Ben Gurion note declared, It noted that as a small nation which gained its independence but ten years ago, “with the assistance of the Soviet Union and the United States,” Israel’s chief task was the development of its resources and the absorption of immigrants.
The USSR could “greatly assist the promotion of a Middle East peace,” the note went on, if it were to “advise Israel and the Arab states of the Middle East to enter into direct negotiations for the conclusion of a peace treaty and the establishment of cooperation.”
In conclusion, the Israeli note said: “The Government of Israel wishes to declare its strong desire to establish closer economic and cultural relations between Israel and the Soviet Union and, with the improvement of the international climate in view, to improve relations between Israel and the Soviet Union. The Israel Government is convinced that such an Improvement in relations would strengthen the Middle East peace and would perhaps contribute in modest measure to a reduction of world tension.”