Eshkol Offers Israel Aid to Arab Countries Threatened by Nasser

“Any Arab state menaced by Nasserist plotting could rely on Israel for support in reaching peace and stability in the region,” Prime Minister Levi Eshkol said here last night addressing the opening session of the national council of the Histadrut, Israel’s Federation of Labor.

The Prime Minister pledged that “Israel would use all its resources to unite all factors wishing development for the benefit of the entire population.” He did not specify the form of support Israel would be ready to give to Arab states menaced by Nasserite subversion activities, however, it was indicated later that any Arab country that responded would get a clear answer.

Mr. Eshkol denounced the policy of Egypt’s President Gamal Abdel Nasser “of threats against Israel and aggression against other Arab states.” These threats, he said, force Israel to follow a policy of “continued alertness and readiness, as well as maintenance of the deterrent power, to foil any thought of aggression.”

At the same time Mr. Eshkol also called on foreign powers to provide aid to Egypt, emphasizing Israel’s interest in such aid that would increase the Egyptian standard of living but “not aid which strengthens aggressors.” Noting that, in Egypt, Nasser has not succeeded in raising the living standards of the lower classes, and that the gap there between the poor and the rich has widened, he stated: “The day will come when our neighbors will recognize the fact that peace will bring prosperity and development for all living in this region.”

The Histadrut council, which is meeting here in sessions to last four days, is discussing domestic economic questions primarily. The council also faces an internal fight between the Herut faction and the Mapai group, with the latter controlling a 55 per cent majority in the Council.

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