WASHINGTON (Jan. 7)
Israeli Foreign Minister Yigal Allon and Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger indicated to newsmen after a three-hour meeting at the State Department this afternoon that their talks aimed at reaching a common U.S.-Israeli position on the Security Council’s Middle East debate had not reached a conclusive stage. “I think we need another talk tomorrow in order to continue and maybe to analyze our conversations,” Allon said. He added, “Today we didn’t even reach the stage in which we have to find out our views and try to learn facts, procedures and regulations and so forth.”
Allon reiterated that Israel will not attend the Security Council debate which begins Monday because the Palestine Liberation Organization has been invited to participate. “We will not be there but this has nothing to do with our talks. The Secretary did not try to convince us to change our mind,” the Israeli Foreign Minister said in reply to a question. Asked if Israel would recognize the PLO, Allon replied flatly, “We’re not going to recognize them.”
Kissinger, who was asked about possible Arab attempts to modify Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338, said the U.S. would strongly oppose any changes but stopped short of saying that it would exercise its veto power against them. “We have stated that as far as the U.S. is concerned, peace negotiations must be made on Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338 and we consider them the only relevant UN resolutions,” Kissinger said. With regard to a veto, however, he said “We will have to see what resolutions emerge before we can make a final decision. We will not participate in any of them. We will strongly oppose any changes.”
COMMON INTERESTS STRESSED
In his prepared statement to reporters as he and Allon emerged from their meeting, Kissinger said: “We have just concluded our initial talks which were conducted in a very cordial and friendly atmosphere. There are no two countries more interested in democracy and peace than the U.S. and Israel. The U.S. has always stated its interest in preserving the security and survival of Israel. We are talking primarily about the Security Council resolution at the UN Security Council next week with a view toward achieving a coordinated position and to maintain common interests.”
Allon said in his statement, “Our meeting today gave us a very good opportunity to review the situation in the way we are accustomed….I think we need another talk tomorrow in order to continue and maybe to analyze our conversations. They were very informative talks and I do hope that we shall reach an understanding, because, as the Secretary said just now, we have many interests in common and foremost to have progress toward peace in the Middle East, peace which will offer a solution to all problems in the Arab-Israeli conflict.” Allon agreed with Kissinger that their talks “were cordial talks, nice, and I am glad we had them.”
Allon was greeted at the State Department this morning by Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs Joseph J. Sisco; Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs Alfred Atherton; and the U.S. Ambassador to Israel, Malcolm Toon. Kissinger’s arrival was delayed by a Cabinet meeting.
President Ford, meanwhile, conferred today with five American envoys to Middle Eastern countries who were called home for consultations on the eve of the Security Council debate. Meeting with him at the White House were Ambassadors Toon; Robert Murphy, the Ambassador to Syria; Thomas Bickering, Ambassador to Jordan; William Porter, Ambassador to Saudi Arabia; and Hermann Eilts, Ambassador to Egypt.