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Egyptian Government Says It is Prepared to Listen to U.s.mideast Peace Proposals

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The Egyptian government indicated today that it was prepared to listen to new proposals the United States may make toward a peace settlement in the Middle East. Such proposals are expected to be made concurrently with an announcement by Secretary of State William P. Rogers that the United States is prepared to sell some additional combat jets to Israel. According to reports from Washington, Mr. Rogers is likely to make the announcement at a press conference scheduled to take place prior to his departure for Manila next week to attend a conference of the Southeast Asia Treaty Organization. Egyptian government spokesman Ahmed Anis told newsmen in Cairo yesterday that the UAR had not yet been informed of the proposals being prepared in Washington but that it is Cairo’s policy “to keep the door open before every peaceful endeavor.” He also hinted that Egypt would welcome a visit to Cairo by the U.S. Secretary of State is he wished to come for consultations. But according to Mr. Anis, Egypt is unaware that Mr. Rogers has expressed interest in such a visit. Cairo broke off diplomatic relations with Washington during the June, 1967 Arab-Israeli war. The only high level diplomatic contact between the two countries since then was a visit to Cairo last April by U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern affairs. Joseph J. Sisco. Observers in Cairo noted that Egypt has muted its propaganda campaign against the U.S. in recent weeks. Last week the Egyptian press reported that Cairo intervened on behalf of American citizens endangered by the fighting in Jordan.

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