Jordan Falls into Line with Egypt on U.S. Initiative: Guerrillas Girding for Fight

Premier Abdel Monem Rifal of Jordan said today that his government has replied to the American peace initiative for the Middle East in a. manner that was “positive and in line with the answer given by the United Arab Republic” according to reports from Amman late this afternoon. Premier Rifai spoke with newsmen after the fifth Cabinet meeting in three days. The Jordanian acceptance put the shaky truce between the government and the Palestinian guerrillas in danger of collapse. King Hussein had postponed yesterday’s Cabinet meeting when the Palestinian minority insisted on guerrilla exemption from the U.S. plan’s provisions. The monarch had been awaiting Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser’s acceptance of the plan which was announced last Thursday. King Hussein’s latest crisis has arisen from the threats of EI Fatah and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, the largest guerrilla organizations, to subvert implementation of the U.S. plan. El Fatah said it would use all means necessary to “foil the American conspiracy.” and Popular Front leader Dr. George Habash declared: “We are determined to use all our strength and all our means to frustrate any attempt at a peaceful solution. We will make this area another Vietnam, and no force. Arab or international can stop it. A political solution will be achieved only over the dead bodies of our fighters.”

Other terrorist groups have followed suit. A spokesman for El Saiqa, the Syrian organization, said he opposed the U.S. initiative “to the end.” At least two guerrilla spokesmen condemned President Nasser. One, representing the Popular Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine, said the Egyptian leader “is surrendering to imperialist interests and handicapping the development of Arab revolutionary forces.” Another, who chose not to publicize his organization’s name, asserted: ” The acceptance of the American plan by Nasser proves he is not fit to be an Arab leader. If Hussein accepts it, he will not last.” (Meanwhile, in Baghdad, the authoritative newspaper Al Jumhouriya rejected the American proposal and the Security Council resolution on which it is based. Iraqi president. Maj. Gen. Ahmed Hassan Al-Bakr, said last week that the Arab’s “only course” is “armed struggle by all means to liberate usurped Arab territory.” Syria also turned down the U.S. plan. Iraq. Syria and the Palestinian commandos have never accepted the UN resolution.)

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