Israeli Defense Official Finds More Sympathy Since De Gaulle’s Departure
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Israeli Defense Official Finds More Sympathy Since De Gaulle’s Departure

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Israel’s assistant Defense Minister, Gen. Zvi Tsur. said on his return from Paris yesterday that no developments could be expected on the French arms embargo against Israel until after next week’s Presidential run-off election.

Gen. Tsur, who conferred with French Defense Minister Pierre Messmer and other Government officials and aircraft industrialists, said “the general feeling was more sympathetic and it was more pleasant to talk to them” since the departure from political power of ex-President Charles de Gaulle. Gen. Tsur visited Paris at the invitation of officials of the international air show held at Le Bourget Airport.

He was accompanied by Admiral Mordechai Limon, head of the Israeli purchasing mission for Western Europe, at his meeting with M. Messmer. He also met with Pierre Blanchard, ministerial delegate for arms and munitions supplies, and Marcel Bloch-Dassault whose firm manufactures the Mirage supersonic jet fighter bomber.

Fifty Mirage V air craft, built to Israeli Air Force specifications, were bought and paid for in full by Israel more than a year ago. They are still held in a French warehouse pending an end, to the embargo on aircraft and spare parts imposed by Gen. de Gaulle following the June. 1967 Six-Day War.

In a related development, a major French aviation company is negotiating for the rights to assemble a small private airplane designed in Israel. The plane, called the Arava. is represented by a scale model at the international air show. Sud Aviation, which has built transport planes for Israel, wants to start production of the Israeli aircraft at its plant in the south of France within a few months, sources here said.

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