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Israel Establishes Full Relations with Singapore, Which Has Large Moslem Minority

The Foreign Ministry announced that full diplomatic relations have been established between Israel and Singapore on an ambassadorial level effective at midnight Sunday. The Israeli trade mission in the tiny southeast Asian island state has been elevated to the rank of an embassy, the ministry said. The chief of mission, Hagai Dikan, will be named Israel’s Ambassador.

Singapore, which lies just south of Malaysia and was Britain’s greatest naval base east of Suez before achieving independence, has a large, influential Moslem minority. The Singapore Foreign Ministry said in a statement yesterday that diplomatic recognition of Israel did not mean endorsement of all of its policies, but added, “Singapore remains committed to the belief that no country, however big or small, should be denied the right to exist.” Israel has assured Singapore that it does not intend to retain territory by force of arms and that its aim is peace. The assurance was given in a diplomatic exchange of notes prior to the establishment of formal relations.