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Israeli Political Parties Pledge to Halt Unfair Practices in Campaign

Supreme Court Justice Moshe Landau, serving as chairman of the Central Elections Committee, was given unlimited authority today by most Israel political parties to stop any practices during the campaign for elections to Parliament which he considers unfair or illegal.

The parties signed an agreement empowering him to act in such situations, without appeal against any rulings he might make. They issued a Joint statement pledging to conduct a fair campaign for the November balloting. The parties signing the agreement were the Mapai-Achdut Avodah alignment, the Joint Herut-Liberal bloc, the National Religious Farty, Mapam, the independent Liberals, former Premier David Ben-Gurion’s new Israel Workers list, and the Communist parties. Agudat Israel and Poale Agudat Israel agreed to sign the pledge later.

Gen. Zvi Tsur, who resigned as chairman of the United States-Israel Desalination committee when he Joined Mr. Ben-Gurion’s indpendent list for the November Parliamentary elections, decided today to continue in that post, after a personal appeal from Premier Levi Eshkol.

Gen. Tsur quit the chairmanship because he felt that as a candidate for political office opposing Mr. Eshkol’s Mapai Party, he should not continue as a major civil servant. Mr. Eshkol sent him a message expressing the view that the resignation was “ill-considered,” and asking him to remain in the post. The chairmanship apparently was regarded by the Premier as a borderline case, making Gen. Tsur the head of an international project and, therefore, not strictly an Israeli civil service office holder.

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