Ben Gurion Resumes Duties Today; Agrees to Preside at Cabinet Meetings

Prime Minister David Ben Gurion, acceding to President Ben Zvi’s request that he continue as caretaker Premier, informed the Cabinet today that he would preside at Cabinet meetings but would not take part in any Ministerial committees which include the four Ministers of the left-wing Mapam and Achdut Avodah parties. The Prime Minister will resume his duties tomorrow after a three-week vacation.

He reiterated in today’s letter his contention that the four Ministers had violated the principle of collective responsibility in voting against the sale of $3,000,000 worth of Israel-made arms to West Germany. Leftist members of the Cabinet retorted to his letter that they had not violated the collective responsibility principle. They reiterated their contention that the West German arms pact was not one of the issues involved in the coalition agreement three years ago.

Meanwhile, a new political movement announced today it favored a federation of Israel and Jordan. The new movement, to be known as “The New Regime” is composed of disappointed members of the pro-Government Mapai Party and the opposition Herut Party. It is headed by S. M. Tamir, leader of the Herut and includes Eliezer Livneh, formerly a leading figure in the Mapai. The new group has not decided whether to take part in the forthcoming national election, but if it will, its list of candidates will be headed by Mr. Tamir who gained prominence during the Kastner trial as the lawyer of the defendant.

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