Kennedy Urges United States-russia Agreement to End Middle East Arms Race

Sen. Robert F. Kennedy, campaigning for the Democratic Presidential nomination, today called for a United States-Soviet agreement to end arms shipments to the Middle East and to defuse tensions between the Arab states and Israel. He spoke at Temple Isaiah here.

Kennedy said that the kind of Big Power agreement he advocated was “the mark of a responsible, great power.” He added that it was “also the best way of diverting the hopes of aggressors from the illusion of a final triumph…It would be a small but important step towards peace in the world.” “In the long run,” Kennedy said, “the Middle East arms race helps no one – least of all the people of that region, who have lived under war for two decades.”

Kennedy said that a Middle East settlement must be negotiated directly between Israel and Its neighbors. He proposed that such a settlement must be reinforced by international guarantees, such as land and sea patrols by an international force which cannot be removed at the whim of an aggressor.

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