President of Ghana Assures Israel; Signed Anti-israel Casablanca Pledge

President Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana today assured Israel’s Ambassador in Ghana that the close ties between his country and Israel will be maintained despite the anti-Israel part of the Casablanca Declaration to which President Nkrumah was a signatory. The assurance was given at a meeting in Accra between the Ghanaian President and Israel Ambassador Moshe Bitan. The latter had expressed Israel’s “surprise and dismay” at the signing of the declaration by Ghana.

Foreign Ministry circles here indicated that some of the explanations given by President Nkrumah for signing the declaration were “partly acceptable” but that discussions on the subject were continuing. A more specific reply to Israel’s protest is expected to be given at a second meeting to take place soon between Ambassador Bitan and President Nkrumah.

Protests were made by Israel to the governments of Mali and Guinea which were among the signatories of the Casablanca Declaration adopted at the Arab “summit conference” which took place in Casablanca, Morocco, with Nasser’s participation.

Since Israel has only a charge d’affaires accredited to Mali, Maurice Fisher, Deputy Director General of the Israel Foreign Ministry, has been dispatched to Bamako for a meeting with President Keita. Israel’s Ambassador to Guinea, Shlomo Hillel, will cut short his home leave and return to Conakry this week for a meeting with President Sekou Toure.

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