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Chinese UN Delegation to Make Mideast Top Priority Item

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The delegation of the People’s Republic of China intends to make the Middle East issue a top priority item on their agenda, according to political observers here. The Chinese also will be mobilizing all their resources to unite the non-aligned “Third World” countries to support a pro-Arab position. This view has been confirmed by a report in Cairo’s semi-official newspaper Al Ahram.

According to the report, Chinese diplomats, stopping in Cairo on their way to the United Nations, told a high official of the Foreign Ministry that the Chinese support Egypt’s struggle against international imperialism and for Egypt’s efforts to obtain a “just peace” in the Middle East. Al Ahram also reported that China and Egypt have had “important diplomatic contacts” on the Mideast situation.

At the same time, China and Lebanon have announced the establishment of diplomatic ties. This, according to observers here, is another move to consolidate a base for the Chinese in their effort to play a leading role in the Middle East and Africa and to isolate Israel in the UN. The announcement yesterday of the Peking-Beirut ties followed China’s reestablishment of diplomatic relations with Tunisia and Burundi three weeks ago and an announcement several days ago by Premier Chou En-lai that China cannot open normal relations with Israel. On Oct. 25 Israel voted to seat mainland China in the UN and to oust Taiwan.

Burundi broke relations with China in 1965 and Tunisia broke relations in 1967. Each charged China with subversion. A letter sent last week by the Israel government to the Chinese government congratulating Peking on being admitted to the UN was returned to Israel unopened and marked “Undeliverable-No Diplomatic Relations.”

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