Eban Says There is Room for Negotiating with Arabs in Matter of Territories

Foreign Minister Abba Eban indicated today that there is plenty of room for negotiations with the Arabs on territorial matters. He stated that the “oral doctrine” on future boundaries adopted by the recent Labor Party convention at the insistence of Defense Minister Moshe Dayan was “a maximal position.” He said it was “really an illustrative list of focal points which are essential for Israel’s security in the light of past experiences.” Eban said it was very difficult to get the world to understand Israel’s position “because if we say nothing, they say don’t stand there, say something, give an illustration of what you want, and when we say these are the things which we would defend in negotiations, they say now you are virtually making conditions.” Eban remarked that it was impossible to go on for four years “not telling the world and not telling our own people what our conceptual vision is.” He said, “Our people would begin to say ‘here is a government which says it doesn’t insist on the present boundaries, that it wants secure recognized boundaries, but when you ask for a model or an illustration it retires into a shell of mystery and of evasion. I think that would have been impossible.’ ” Eban presented these remarks in an interview published in The Jerusalem Post.

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