Mideast Peace Talks Suspended; Jarring Returns to Moscow for at Least Two Weeks
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Mideast Peace Talks Suspended; Jarring Returns to Moscow for at Least Two Weeks

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The Middle East peace talks which floundered and sputtered have been suspended entirely within two months of their inception. Dr. Gunnar V. Jarring, the Mideast peace envoy ended his efforts here this weekend to bring about Israeli-Arab talks and is returning to Moscow for at least two weeks to resume his regular post as Swedish Ambassador to the Soviet Union according to announcements here. Spokesmen for the United Nations said that Secretary General U Thant and Dr. Jarring decided to suspend the peace talks efforts because the Mideast mediator had done “all he can do” in the present circumstances. Dr. Jarring is expected to return to the UN about Oct. 15. He came to New York on Aug. 2 in an effort to start peace talks between Israel and her Arab neighbors. Egypt, Jordan and Israel agreed to negotiations under his auspices on the basis of the United States peace initiative projected by Secretary of State William P. Rogers. A UN spokesman said then that Dr. Jarring’s length of stay in New York and his course of action “will be determined” during his talks here. The peace talks, however, were doomed almost from the beginning as Egypt, in violation of the standstill agreement within the cease-fire accord along the Sues Canal, began to move missiles and construct missile sites within the 32-mile standstill zone. Talks “for a just and lasting peace” began on Aug. 25 just 17 days after the U.S. sponsored cease-fire plan went into effect. Dr. Jarring conferred with representatives of Egypt and Jordan and met twice that day with Israeli Ambassador Yosef Tekoah. That same evening Mr. Tekoah returned to Jerusalem for consultations and on Sept. 6 Israel announced it was withdrawing from the talks because Egypt had persistently violated the standstill agreement.

During the past month Dr. Jarring has met sporadically with representatives of Israel. Egypt and Jordan, with representatives of the Big Four and with Mr. Thant, but real negotiations never got off the ground. After the death last Monday of Egypt’s President Gamal Abdel Nasser positions apparently hardened all around. At the Big Four meeting last Wednesday the Soviet delegate. Yakov Malik, reportedly accused the United States of trying to sabotage the Jarring mission. Charles Yost, the U.S. ambassador, cited Egyptian standstill violations and was reported to have stated that it was important to know whether one could trust the word of a government. Mr. Yost added that the Jarring talks could not be resumed until the missile violations had been rectified and urged Britain, France and the Soviet Union to help bring it about. Mr. Malik was reported to have told the Big Four that they should “redouble” their efforts to reach the terms of a fair settlement in the Middle East. On Tuesday, Israel’s Foreign Minister Abba Eban said Israel remained firm in not returning to the peace talks until Egypt “corrects” its “illicit” missile buildup and added that he hoped to meet again with Dr. Jarring whose international judgement Israel trusted. Earlier, in a speech to the General Assembly. Mr. Eban offered to “use my presence here for talks with heads of Arab delegations on the establishment of peace and on the creation of the atmosphere and conditions in which a fruitful negotiation can take place.” There is, he asserted, “no rational or defensible reason for refusing such an opportunity.” (In Washington, State Department spokesman John F. King said on Friday that the U.S. has been informed that Dr. Jarring “will remain available to return to New York on 24 hours’ notice.”)

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