JERUSALEM (Jul. 15)
Foreign Minister Yigal Allon, addressing the Jewish Agency’s General Assembly on political matters today, said it was up to American Jews to see to it that the next Administration in Washington moves the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Both major American political parties have gone on record in favor of the move and a specific commitment to it is contained in the Democratic Party’s platform for 1976 which was adopted at the nominating convention in New York this week.
But Allon urged pressure from American Jews to make sure the promise is fulfilled. “Why is it that the American Ambassador can present his credentials in Jerusalem but he cannot live here? Why can he meet here but be deprived of the pleasure of living in Jerusalem?” Allon asked.
The issue was raised during a special Bicentennial session of the Knesset this week by Likud leader Menachem Beigin who observed that Jerusalem is the only capital in which the U.S. Ambassador is not resident. Ambassador Malcolm Toon, who attended the session, remarked later, “I did not agree to everything Mr. Beigin said.”
RULES OUT SYRIAN ANNEXATION OF LEBANON
Referring to other matters, Allon told the Assembly delegates that he ruled out a Syrian annexation of Lebanon “not only because of the courage of the Maronite (Christian) people in Lebanon but also because of the presence of Israel.” He said that so far the Arab states have not responded to Israel’s challenge to negotiate a state of non-belligerency pending a final peace settlement.
Allon said Egypt has remained silent because it does not want to take another step on its own after last fall’s second Sinai interim agreement. Syria will not move because of its involvement in Lebanon and Jordan because of its commitment to the Rabat summit decision designating the PLO as representatives of the Palestinians, Allon said.
Regarding the decision to undertake the July 3 rescue operation in Entebbe, Uganda, Allon said, “Everybody has his own version of the way the decision was taken, but this is not a time to check versions. Each decision involved in the operation was taken unanimously by the three ministries involved–the Premier, Defense Minister and Foreign Minister.”