JERUSALEM (Mar. 11)
With Israel’s new government sworn into office last night, preparations were being made today here for disengagement talks with Syria that are due to take place in Washington later this month. Foreign Minister Abba Eban left for Washington this morning only hours after he was sworn into the new Cabinet. He is to meet with Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger Thursday for “preliminary” talks.
Officials here said the talks would not cover details of a disengagement plan which Premier Golda Meir promised to present to Kissinger within two weeks after her new government was established. They would be a general survey of developments between Israel and Syria, the Geneva conference and the U.S. and European measures to ease the energy crisis, the officials said
Eban told reporters before he left that Israel has not yet decided who would represent it in what he described as “disengagement proximity talks” with Syria. He said it was not clear yet at what level Syria wanted to hold the talks but the two sides would have to agree on either ministerial level or lower level talks involving senior military officers, probably chiefs of staff. Several newspapers reported today that Defense Minister Moshe Dayan would represent Israel at the talks. But that would be the case only if ministerial level talks were agreed to.