Eshkol Invites Mapam to Join New Cabinet; Asks Dissidents to Return

Prime Minister Levi Eshkol, leader of the Mapai-Achdut Avodah alignment, which won the largest vote among all the lists for which Israelis balloted in the national elections last week, today invited the Mapam Party to enter the coalition for the new Government he is planning.

Mapam, according to the still incomplete tallies of the balloting, seems to have won eight seats in the next Knesset (Parliament), while the Mapai-Achdut Avodah alignment has a probable 44 seats and a possible 45 places. The final and official results of the elections are expected to be announced late tonight.

Mr. Eshkol made his offer to Mapam at a meeting here today with two of that party’s leaders, Meir Yeari and Yaacov Hazan. The Mapam chiefs told Mr. Eshkol they would discuss the offer with their organization’s executive bodies, after which they will meet with the Premier again.

Meanwhile, Mr. Eshkol indicated today that the would welcome the return to the Mapai ranks of some of the dissidents who broke away from Mapai to join Rafi, the Israel Workers List formed by former Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion. In an address at Tel Aviv, Mr. Eshkol said he believed that “an errant minority” had become “involved in this adventure for various reasons, but they would return to the family.”

He warned Mapai, as well as the alignment, to “look to the future, and not backward to the affairs that occurred in the past.” He told the Mapai Central Committee, at the same time, that Mapai “must not rest on the laurels won in the election.” “Victories,” he stated, “are not perpetual, nor assured for the future. The party should now begin to ensure the confidence of the nation by virtue of its day-to-day work.” He urged the inclusion in the party and in the Histadrut leadership of “the young and vital elements” among the members of both organizations.

RISE IN ISRAEL’S FOREIGN CURRENCY RESERVES REPORTED

Meanwhile the Israel Treasury today announced that Israel’s foreign currency reserves totaled more than $700,000,000 at the end of the last fiscal year, an increase of 20 percent over the previous fiscal year. The Treasury also predicted a further rise to $750,000,000 by the end of the current fiscal year.

In a breakdown, the Treasury reported that earnings from exports rose by $50,000,000 and expenditures for imports declined by $58,000,000. On the other hand, the flow of loans and other funds to Israel dropped from $664,000,000 to $650,000,000.

The chief drop was in West German restitution payments which declined from $148,000,000 in 1963-64 to $123,000,000. A further drop is expected this year but the amended restitution law in West Germany is expected to raise income from this source to $150,000,000 in 1966-67. Aid from the United States totaled $58,800,000 of which $24,400,000 came as a loan and $34,400,000 in the form of farm surplus grants.

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