Israel Cabinet Discusses Arab Defense Pact to Send Troops to Jordan

Israel’s Cabinet discussed at its weekly meeting here today a report to the effect that the Arab states reached a defense agreement this weekend, under which the Arab states would send military forces into Jordan, “in an emergency” even if Jordan made no request for such aid.

Prime Minister Levi Eshkol evaluated that report at the Cabinet meeting and also noted that two mines were found last week on Israel’s side of the Jordanian border. The mines, he said, were the first discovered in Israel since the United Nations Security Council’s recent deliberations on Jordan’s complaint against Israel’s raid into Jordan on November 13.

While no announcement was made about the Cabinet’s reactions to the Arab agreement, it was believed here that the Government would not alter its attitude regarding such a possible development as spelled out two weeks ago by Mr. Eshkol. The Premier had said a fortnight ago that Israel would regard entry of non-Jordanian troops into Jordan as a change in the status quo along the Israeli borders.

Today’s Cabinet meeting decided that the next Independence Day parade, in the spring, would be held in Jerusalem, but would adhere to the provisions of the Israeli-Jordanian armistice agreement of 1949. Under that pact, Jerusalem is a “defense area” limited as to armaments and excluding war planes, rockets, artillery exceeding 25-pounders and field guns. Several years ago, after Israel had staged its Independence Day military parade in Jerusalem, Jordan complained to the Security Council. Since then, the big, annual military parade had been held in other cities.

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