TEL AVIV (Jan. 21)
Seven members of the South Vietnamese Senate arrived here today on an unofficial ten-day visit to see what they could “learn from Israel” that would benefit their own country’s search for “peace and development.” The group is headed by Sen. Van Don and includes among its members Mrs. Nagoyan Fouok Dai, deputy head of the Senate and a member of its labor, foreign affairs and security committees. They were met at Lydda Airport by a group of Foreign Ministry officials who denied that the visitors had been invited officially to Israel.
Israel has recognized the Saigon Government but does not have diplomatic relations with South Vietnam. The group described itself as a “study mission.” They got their Israeli visas from the Israeli Consulate in Bangkok, Thailand. They said they would visit kibbutzim and moshavim and hoped to meet with local leaders.
“We are a small nation fighting vast forces and like you we want to end the war.” a spokesman for the group told newsmen at Lydda Airport. “We want a lasting peace with guaranteed borders so that we can divert all of our resources to developing our country.” he said.