LONDON (Nov. 18)
Foreign Secretary Michael Stewart expressed confidence today that the peace-seeking mission of the United Nations special envoy to the Middle East, Ambassador Gunnar V. Jarring, would continue. Replying to questions in the House of Commons, Mr. Stewart said that although the Foreign Ministers of Israel, Egypt and Jordan have all returned home from the UN, each of them had expressed a readiness to continue discussions with Dr. Jarring. Britain will give Dr. Jarring its full support, he added.
Mr. Stewart said there was also a general acceptance by the parties concerned of the Security Council’s Nov. 22, 1967 resolution on the Middle East. But the question remained whether any particular action was needed to implement it and if so, what action and by whom. William Witlock. Undersecretary of State at the Foreign Office, said the best hope for re-opening the Suez Canal lay within the framework of a general Middle East settlement. Speaking on the same subject, Goronwy Roberts, Minister of State at the Foreign Office, said there were hopes for re-opening the canal and for releasing the 15 merchant ships trapped in the waterway since June, 1967. He added that the Government would like to isolate this particular issue from the general Middle Eastern problem.