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Israel Not Concerned over Resumption of U.s.-egypt Ties

Foreign Minister Abba Eban indicated no concern on Israel’s part over the resumption of diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Egypt announced yesterday. He said the only surprising aspect was that it took the two countries so long to restore the diplomatic ties which Egypt broke after the 1967 Six-Day War. Eban said it was Israel’s standing policy to support the universality of diplomatic relations. He cited Rumania–from which he returned last night after a three-day visit–as an example of a country that maintains diplomatic relations with many other nations regardless of the nature of their political systems.

Eban said his talks with Rumanian leaders in Bucharest were conducted in a good atmosphere but refused to elaborate on their content. He said that would be made clear in a Joint communique to be issued this afternoon. On a television interview, Ebon said he did not expect a Rumanian initiative to mediate the Middle East conflict. He noted that Rumania avoids the term “mediation” but could be expected to use its “good offices” to convey Israel’s point of view to the other side.

A joint statement released both in Bucharest and Jerusalem this afternoon says the immediate solutions to the Mideast conflict should conform in spirit and be based on Security Council Resolution 338 of Oct. 22 calling for a cease-fire and negotiations between the parties concerned. The statement was issued following Eban’s visit to Rumania.

The parties expressed their deep concern regarding the state of tension prevailing in the Mideast and the recent developments which caused heavy losses in lives and property and presented a danger to international peace and security. It was agreed that under conditions as they exist in the world today, with the appearance of a new trend toward detente, peaceful solutions are called for now more than ever. Eban invited Rumania’s Foreign Minister Gheorghiu Macovescu to pay an official visit to Israel. The invitation was accepted and a date for the visit will be set later.

It had been reported from Bucharest while Eban was still there that there had been pressure on Rumania early in the war from the USSR and Yugoslavia to cut its ties with Israel. This was resisted.

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