Menu JTA Search

Israel Reacts to Arab ‘summit’ Decisions; Warns Arabs on Aggression

SIGN UP FOR THE JTA DAILY BRIEFING

The Israel Government last night reiterated its determination “to repel and thwart any aggression” on the part of the Arabs and to continue in the development of its Jordan River irrigation project in spite of Arab threats to take steps to divert the Jordan headwaters in an effort to interfere with Israeli plans.

In a statement issued by a Government spokesman following preliminary discussions by the Cabinet of the recent Arab summit conference in Alexandria, Israel also called upon the nations of the world to repudiate the “aggressive declarations” made by the Arab heads of state who announced as their objective the “liberation of Palestine from Zionist imperialism.”

Asserting that it was the objective of the 13 Arab states to “attempt to destroy another state also a member of the United Nations and to plan a comprehensive military attack against Israel,” the Israeli statement declared that “the world’s peace-loving states, the United Nations and enlightened public opinion are surely not entitled to reconcile themselves to public announcements of aggressive intent and to declarations violating the purpose of the United Nations Charter and accepted principles governing relations between states.”

Moreover, the statement continued, “these aggressive declarations were made at a time when the world is engaged in attempts to increase understanding and find peaceful solutions for regional disputes. It would do well for the world not to revert to an attitude of complacency, silence and lack of concern which it once evidenced towards threats of aggression accompanied by political and military preparations aimed at translating threats into action.”

Citing the resolution adopted at the Arab summit conference calling for the diversion of the upper tributaries of the Jordan River and promising “implementation of Arab plans especially in the military and technical fields including the commencement of work of revolutionary character,” the Government spokesman reiterated Premier Eshkol’s statement in the Knesset, Israel’s Parliament, asserting that “Israel will draw water from Lake Kinneret within the quantities allotted her” in the unified plan for the division of the water worked out by the late Eric Johnston, the special envoy named by former President Eisenhower to deal with the problem.

WILL OPPOSE ARAB MEASURES; CONTEMPLATES STEPS IN WORLD CAPITALS

“Israel will oppose unilateral illegal measures by Arab countries and will act for the preservation of her vital interests,” the statement declared, adding that “in the measure that world public opinion rejects the counsels of hostility and aggression and encourages positive and constructive development, it will assist the Arab governments in abandoning a policy of dangerous adventure and will assist our region to move forward on the path of constructive progress and peace.”

The implications of the Alexandria Arab summit conference will be further explored by the Israel Foreign Ministry which contemplates steps in major world capitals in order to make the nations aware of the true nature and dangers involved in the Arab threats, it was reported here today.

Israel’s determination to repel Arab aggression and act for the preservation of her vital interests if the Arabs try to implement the diversion of the Jordan tributaries is expected to be conveyed to the various governments by Israel’s envoys throughout the world. Israeli circles stressed today that it was the major responsibility of the powers supplying the Arabs with economic and military aid to realize the dangerous path involved and the clear threat of war.

NEXT STORY