WASHINGTON (Oct. 13)
The United States and Israel were in agreement today that Egypt’s violation of the Suez cease-fire was a matter to be settled outside the framework of the stalled Jarring peace talks. Foreign Minister Abba Eban of Israel made that point when he was asked by newsmen today whether Israel would agree to resume the Jarring talks if the Egyptian violations were the first item on the agenda. Mr. Eban said that Israel would not and observed that under the terms of his mandate from the United Nations Security Council, Dr. Jarring could not deal with the cease-fire but only with a settlement of the issues of the Middle East conflict. At his daily press briefing later. State Department spokesman Robert J. McCloskey said fa reply to the same question that he “would agree with the (Israeli) Foreign Secretary.” Referring to the cease-fire violations, Mr. McCloskey said, “This is a matter to be settled between and among the parties and in which the U.S. has a role.” He said the U.S. was standing firm on its demand for rectification of the violations. “We want rectification to make it possible for the talks to resume,” he said. Asked to define what the U.S. means by “rectification,” the State Department spokesman said the only “sensible” definition was that given by Secretary of State William P. Rogers at his Oct. 9 press conference. Mr. McCloskey quoted Secretary Rogers as having said that “rectification means a condition which we might bring about which would satisfy both parties and then to start negotiating.”
EBAN, ROGERS CONFER ON MIDEAST, TRUCE VIOLATIONS; EBAN FOR TRUCE EXTENSION
Foreign Minister Eban met for 65 minutes with Secretary Rogers today. According to informed sources, the meeting was “useful” and focussed on a general review of the Middle East situation. According to the sources, Mr. Eban indicated that Israel wanted to see the cease-fire extended beyond its Nov. 5 deadline. They also reportedly discussed the cease-fire violations and Mr. Rogers was said to have expressed his full sympathy and understanding of the Israeli position. The U.S. offered no new proposals and did not press Israel on the issue of the violations. Mr. Rogers reportedly reiterated the hope that the Jarring peace talks would be resumed soon. Mr. Eban told reporters afterwards that Israel was satisfied that the U.S. was impressing the Soviet Union and Egypt with the importance of keeping agreements and restoring confidence in them. He said the need to restore confidence was the main obstacle to resuming the Jarring talks. Mr. Eban rejected that Soviet contention that it had violated no agreement because it had signed none. He said that as far as Israel is concerned there was a definite Soviet commitment with regard to the standstill cease-fire.