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U.S. Aloof over Israeli Crisis

The United States remained officially aloof today over the political crisis in Israel. State Department spokesman Robert Funseth termed it “essentially an internal development” when asked if Premier Yitzhak Rabin’s ouster of the National Religious Party from his coalition government yesterday would affect U.S. efforts to promote peace negotiations and whether the Rabin government is now stable enough to enter into negotiations.

Funseth said “the search for peace” will have “high priority” in the Carter Administration but noted that he could not make any assessments on its behalf. He said he has not seen a “suggestion of anyone holding back” in the U.S. effort toward peace in the Middle East.