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Socialist International Asks for Passage of Israel Ships Through Suez

The congress of the Socialist International which concluded deliberations on Sunday, has unanimously adopted a resolution calling on the United Nations to effectively guarantee free passage through the Suez Canal of all ships “including those of Israel. ” The resolution was suggested by Dr. S. Levenberg, of the Mapai delegation, and was seconded by Aneurin Bevan, on behalf of the British Labor Party. It was presented to the congress by Belgian Foreign Minister Victor Larock, chairman of the political committee.

“The Congress of the Socialist International declares that freedom of navigation of all ships, including those of Israel, through the Suez Canal, is a vital interest of the International Community and must be effectively guaranteed by the United Nations, ” the resolution reads.

E. Vermeer, chairman of the Labor Party of the Netherlands, told the congress that freedom of navigation is a matter which concerns all maritime nations. Today Israeli ships are being stopped by Nasser, tomorrow he may stop ships of other nations, Mr. Vermeer said. Israel is entitled to our utmost support in her struggle for freedom of the seas. International law, which is on the side of Israel, must be upheld, he added.

During the debate on underdeveloped territories, Miss Esther Herlitz, international secretary of Israel’s Mapai Party, spoke about the close ties which Israel had established with a number of countries in Asia and Africa. “We extend our hand of friendship to them with no strings attached in a spirit of international solidarity, ” she said.

Addressing a luncheon of the Asian delegates to the congress, Nat Pai, president of the International Association of Socialist Youth and a member of the Indian Parliament, said that throughout Asia, people were watching Israel’s constructive work with sympathy and admiration. Her achievements were an example of and an inspiration for the progressive forces in new countries fighting for a democratic way of life, he declared.

All members of the British delegation, including Laborites Hugh Gaitskell and Aneurin Bevan, attended a luncheon arranged by the Israel delegation at which former Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, Moshe Sharett was host. Reuven Barkatt and Dr. Levenberg were re-elected Mapai representatives on the Bureau of the Socialist International.

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