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State Department Official Claims Russia Reconsidering Us Mideast Proposals

A State Department official Wednesday told the National Petroleum Council that “some progress” is being made toward Russian reconsideration of American Middle East peace proposals rejected in December by the USSR. Rodger Davies, Senior Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs, said that Israeli withdrawal from occupied territory is essential to a settlement. Mr. Davies said the Soviet Union wants to avoid a confrontation with the United States over the Middle East but was concerned about the Kremlin’s role with Arab clients.