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Congressional Body Recommends Continuation of U.S. Aid to Israel

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A recommendation was made today by the House Foreign Affairs Committee that special assistance grant aid to Israel be maintained in fiscal year 1961, beginning July 1, at the same level as in fiscal year 1960. Israel received $7,500,000 in such aid in the current fiscal year ending June 30.

At the same time the House Foreign Affairs Committee today took the Administration to task for failing to do an adequate Job in supporting freedom of passage in the Suez Canal.

A committee report said the body “has followed closely development related to the use of the Suez Canal and believes that the United States has not done as effective a job as it should have in urging the removal of the restrictions on the free movement of commerce through the canal.”

The committee said it was “with this and other situations in various parts of the world in mind, ” that the committee had proposed an amendment to the Mutual Security Act expressing the sense of Congress in opposition to the Arab blockade.

LAUDS ISRAEL’S USE OF THE ‘MODEST’ AID RECEIVED FROM U.S.

The $7,500,000 special assistance grant aid to Israel for fiscal year 1960 was won by the House Foreign Affairs Committee last year over the objections of the Administration which sought to cut Israel out of this program. Congressional opposition was so intense that the executive department was forced to reinstate special assistance grant aid for Israel. Today’s expression indicated that the Committee is seeking continuation of this form of aid for yet another year.

A committee statement said that “Against great odds, Israel has continued to be a bulwark of stability in an otherwise disturbed area. It has used effectively the modest amount of special assistance extended under the mutual security program.”

The committee decided that “The determination of Israel to develop its industry and to increase its agricultural cut put will necessitate aid at the same level for the next year as in the current year. The committee is therefore of the opinion that special assistance to Israel should be maintained at the level of fiscal year 1960.”

In fiscal year 1960, which ends June 30, Israel received special assistance grand aid in the amount of $7,500,000; $1,370,000 in Point Four technical cooperation; and $32,000,000 in surplus commodities. Some loans remain pending in negotiation stage.

Israel, in 1959 fiscal year, received $10,000,000 in special assistance grant aid and Point Four technical cooperation; $38,300,000 in surplus commodities, and a $5,000,000 loan from the Development Loan Fund.

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