JERUSALEM (Jul. 20)
Israel is pursuing negotiations with Egypt as though there was no Egyptian pressure in connection with the UNEF mandate; and the negotiations seem to be progressing well. This summary of the situation was given to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency by well placed sources here just before the Cabinet met tonight to consider reports on the state of the negotiations to date. The Cabinet held its regular Sunday session this morning but, finding its agenda crowded, confined itself to other matters and decided to reconvene tonight to discuss the state of negotiations.
Well placed sources said the ball was basically in Egypt’s court now and Israelis waiting to hear President Anwar Sadat’s reaction to its latest proposals transmitted through Israel’s Ambassador Simcha Dinitz and the U.S. Ambassador to Cairo, Hermann Eilts. Reports reaching here from Washington indicating that an agreement was as good as concluded were dismissed as premature by the sources. While progress had been made, certain issues still need to be resolved, both on the Israel-Egypt level and in the context of Israel-U.S. relations. The general feeling here, however, was that unless last-minute obstacles were raised by Cairo an agreement would be concluded probably by a renewal of Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger’s “shuttle” diplomacy in August.