PARIS (Mar. 18)
Mrs. Golda Meir, Israel’s Foreign Minister, said today after three hours of talks with French Foreign Minister Maurice Couve de Murville that “France supports Israel’s stand on the Arab threat to divert the Jordan River waters.”
However, on the issue of Israel’s urgent concern for changes in its pact with the Euro pean Common Market, she reported only that the French diplomat “showed understanding for Israel’s problems.” It was understood that he gave Mrs. Meir no definite assurances to support Israel’s plea for a complete revision of its present links to the European Economic Community.
Mrs. Meir called the views of the two countries on the Middle East “very close” and said that France “certainly does not agree with a plan which aims at depriving a country of its natural water supply.” Mrs. Meir called the conference “very cordial and friendly” and added that, as far as the Middle East was concerned, agreement between the two Ministers was complete.
The views of France on the Common Market problem were considered to be more reserved. Since Israel signed its agreement with EEC last June, the Ministers Council of the EEC approved directives to protect the farm products of member states which have virtually canceled the few advantages Israel achieved in its EEC agreement. Israel now reportedly feels that its substantial export trade with the six-nation Common Market could be adequately protected only by as sociate membership in the EEC.
Israel also cited the fact that all of the EEC representatives had called the Israel-EEC pact “only a first step toward closer collaboration.” It was also believed that establishment of diplomatic relations with West Germany, one of Euromart’s most influential members, could also help Israel to obtain better terms for its Euromart exports.