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Israel Again Challenges Soviet Role in Middle East Peace Deliberations

Israel challenged the good faith of the Soviet Union to participate in deliberations seeking establishment of peace in the Middle East today when Ambassador Yosef Tekoah told United Nations Secretary-General U Thant that the Soviet Union was using the United Nations to encourage Arab belligerency against Israel and was misusing the UN forms “to defame Israel.”

Mr. Tekoah’s charges were made in a letter to the Secretary-General replying to a letter from Ambassador Yakov Malik on Nov.20 assailing Israel’s alleged misuse of the United Nations as a forum for attack on the Soviet Union. Mr. Malik complained specifically against Israel’s introduction of a letter from 18 Georgian Jewish families asking aid from the UN Human Rights Commission to emigrate to Israel. He also objected to Mr. Tekoah’s press conference.

Mr. Tekoah declared that Soviet policies and procedures were not in conformity with the purposes of the UN as Mr. Malik himself defined them in his Nov.20 letter and pointed out that “the Soviet Union identifies itself with and encourages Arab belligerence against Israel, a state member of the United Nations, and misuses United Nations forms to defame Israel.”

ENVOYS OF BIG FOUR RESUME MEETINGS IN NEW YORK

The ambassadors of the Four Powers met this afternoon at the Waldorf-Astoria apartment of Ambassador Charles W. Yost in what UN observers termed one of the most futile exercises in diplomacy in the long record of futile exercises at the international headquarters. The United States was known to have agreed to the resumption of the Four Power meetings only with the utmost reluctance, skeptical of the outcome in view of the Soviet failure to offer any definite reply to American proposals on an Israeli-Egyptian boundary line. According to the New York Post today, a Soviet Diplomat told its correspondent that a reply would be forthcoming “soon”to the American proposals made last Oct. 28.

The British were described Tuesday as seeking to get the talks off in a new direction by switching the focus from Israeli-Egyptian issues, on which the American-Soviet talks apparently foundered, to Israeli-Jordanian issues. Few at the UN shared the publicly voiced optimism of Secretary-General U Thant who let it be known that he considered that the Four Power talks “provide the best possible solution” to the problem.

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