Chancellor Erhard’s Envoy Concludes Talks with Premier Eshkol

A Joint communique issued here today by the Government of Israel and by Dr. Kurt Birrenbach, West German Chancellor Ludwig Erhard’s special emissary here, announced that the two governments have agreed to exchange ambassadors “within the next few weeks.”

Dr. Birrenbach is scheduled to return to Bonn tomorrow. He concluded today six days of a second round of talks with Prime Minister Levi Eshkol and other top-ranking Israeli leaders, including Shimon Peres, Deputy Minister of Defense, and Deputy Premier Abba Eban, who is now Acting Foreign Minister in the absence of Mrs. Golda Meir. After asserting that the conversations about the exchange of ambassadors have resulted in a decision to implement that step shortly, the communique declared:

“Other matters of concern to both governments were discussed in a spirit of mutual desire to arrive at agreed solutions. It can be expected that complete agreement on the matters discussed will be reached shortly.”

The “other matters” are believed to include the question of West Germany’s aid to Israel’s security, on which agreement had apparently been reached in principle, although some details remain to be ironed out. Reliable Israeli sources expressed satisfaction with the talks with the German envoy. It is believed that on the major question of West German supply of the remainder of the arms it had promised to Israel and suddenly cut off several weeks ago, under pressure by Egypt, a formula has been evolved and awaits only final approval by Dr. Erhard.

In regard to the German scientists at work in Egypt on sophisticated arms intended ultimately for use against Israel. Bonn has reportedly assured Israel that it will do its utmost in that area of controversy. Germany is said to have told Israel that most of the German missile and rocket scientists in Egypt had already returned to West Germany, and that no more German scientists are going to Egypt. In regard to the exchange of ambassadors, the agreement is said to include a clause giving the Germans the right to open their embassy in Tel Aviv, instead of in Jerusalem.

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