Knesset Labor Faction Drafts ‘secrecy’ Rule After ‘leak’ of Controversial Dayan Remarks

The Labor Party faction in the Knesset (Parliament) took steps today to plug the “leak” that was the cause of a political controversy in Israel last week. The group drafted a rule binding its members to secrecy on any subject that its chairman might classify as secret. The move followed press publication of off-the-record remarks by Defense Minister Moshe Dayan at a party caucus. Gen. Dayan had reportedly urged the Government to reject the Security Council’s Nov. 22, 1967 Middle East resolution because, as he interpreted it, the resolution called for Israel’s unconditional withdrawal to the boundaries that existed before last June’s Six-Day War. The accuracy of the attribution was not disputed in the debate that followed. But the Government, obviously embarrassed, issued a Cabinet statement Sunday rejecting the alleged Dayan interpretation of the resolution and re-stated its own which is that the resolution provided a basis for pence talks.

Prime Minister Eshkol said in a radio address Friday night that foreign policy statements were the prerogative of the Prime Minister and the Foreign Minister only. Foreign Minister Eban was reportedly seeking a Cabinet ruling barring such statements by other ministers. Defense Minister Dayan yesterday rejected, on grounds of security, a question in the Knesset by a member of the New Communist Party. The questioner wanted to know the number of persons detained in Israel for security reasons.

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