JERUSALEM (Dec. 16)
Although plans for the reception of Pope Paul VI in Israel during his visit here have not as yet been finalized, it was learned today that President Zalman Shazar will greet the Pontiff on his arrival in Jerusalem, and will present him with a special gold medal showing the map of Israel and bearing in Hebrew and Latin words an inscription: “I visited Israel.” Similar bronze medals will be presented to the cardinals accompanying the Pope.
Israeli police Chief Joseph Nahmias and Teddy Kolleck, director-general of the Premier’s office here, will leave for Rome tomorrow to finalize arrangements for the visit of the Pontiff to Israel, next month. Mr. Kolleck is the director of a special committee of Cabinet members given responsibility for those arrangements by the entire Cabinet a week ago.
A report on the arrangements as they stand now was given to the Cabinet yesterday by Abba S. Eban, the Deputy Premier. The Ministerial Committee also received a report on the Pontiff’s scheduled visit from Maurice Fischer, Israel’s Ambassador to Rome.
Meanwhile, Government authorities have instructed the Public Works Department to start immediately certain repairs needed to make the Pope’s visit easier and smoother. The repairs will include the road to Mount Zion as well as roads leading to certain churches and monasteries that the Pontiff may want to visit. The Cabinet has voted a special allocation of funds for repair work in Nazareth, the city which the Pope is certain to visit.