JERUSALEM (Dec. 27)
Premier Golda Meir announced today that she will propose a resolution at tomorrow’s Cabinet meeting to the effect that conditions for Israel’s return to the Jarring talks have been created. Mrs. Meir made the announcement at a meeting of the Labor Alignment parliamentary faction which endorsed her proposal. She also announced that the resolution, the adoption of which is now considered virtually certain, would be submitted to the Knesset Tuesday for approval. Defense Minister Moshe Dayan attended today’s meeting and participated in the discussion. A Government decision on the Jarring talks had been expected to emerge from the regularly scheduled Sunday meeting of the Cabinet. But today’s meeting was postponed owing to the government’s pre-occupation with the Leningrad trial and sentences. Another cause for delay was the hesitation by the National Religious Party to agree to a return to the Jarring talks, a situation that was resolved only today. The three NRP ministers, Dr. Joseph Burg, Dr. Zerach Warhaftig and Michael Yaacov Hazani reportedly favored a return but were opposed by some of their party’s younger element.
The NRP executive stated this afternoon that it did not consider that the conditions necessary for Israel’s return to the Jarring talks have been created yet. But it agreed nevertheless to permit the three NRP ministers to vote in favor of return if that turned out to be the decision of the rest of the government. The NRP leaders met with Dayan this morning, apparently for assurances that Israel’s security would not be jeopardized if it rejoined the negotiations. Dayan reportedly told them he favored returning to the Jarring talks at this time. (Interviewed by New York Times correspondent James Reston at her Tel Aviv apartment, Premier Golda Meir was pessimistic about chances of peace through the Jarring talks. But according to Reston, in the interview published today, the Israeli government will decide soon to rejoin the talks. Mrs. Meir indicated in her remarks that she thought the Jarring talks would be prolonged and could succeed only if the Arabs genuinely want a settlement. “If they are coming to the Jarring talks in a mood of serving us ultimatums and timetables, this is a blue-print for failure,” she said.)