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Eban Says Egypt Has Not Approached Israel on Freeing Ships; Sees Jarring for Fourth Time

Israel is still awaiting Egypt’s proposals for the planned release of the foreign ships stranded in a section of the Suez Canal since Cairo blocked the canal last June. This fact became clear here today after a Cabinet meeting in which Foreign Minister Abba Eban reported he had met for the fourth time today with Ambassador Gunnar V. Jarring, the United Nations special peace emissary to the Middle East. Mr. Eban said Mr. Jarring had made no mention of Egypt’s plans to release the stranded ships.

In Israel’s view, any plans by Egypt to use any portion of the canal must come through Lt. Gen. Odd Bull, the chief of the U.N. cease-fire teams, who had negotiated the Israeli-Egyptian agreement under which both sides could use the canal–or neither. So far, nothing had been received on this point from Gen. Bull. Mr. Eban said that, after his meeting with Ambassador Jarring today, the envoy left for Amman, capital of Jordan.

The Cabinet also heard a report on security affairs from Gen. Moshe Dayan, the Minister of Defense. In the absence of Premier Levi Eshkol, who is in the United States, the Cabinet session was presided over by Minister of Finance Pinhas Sapir.