Zionist Congress Unlikely to Meet Before 1978 Due to Government Crisis

The next World Zionist Congress is not likely to be held before 1978 as a result of the government crisis precipitated by Premier Yitzhak Rabin’s ouster of the National Religious Party from his Cabinet yesterday. The World Zionist Organization Executive that was to have met today to set a date for the Congress postponed its meeting. Jewish Agency and WZO circles said the various political factions now anticipate early general elections and have no time to discuss Zionist Congress problems.

If early elections are called, possibly for April or May, Israel’s political parties will be fully occupied campaigning for Knesset seats. Also coming up are municipal elections, Histadrut elections and internal elections within the parties. The latter are intended to demonstrate to the electorate that the parties are governed by the democratic process.

The World Zionist Congress originally was to have opened in Jerusalem next month, A recent decision by the Congress Court that elections must be held for delegates in all 30 participating countries necessitated a postponement. Although some Zionist leaders insisted that the Congress could be held next summer, most agreed that the Congress should not conflict with the election campaign. it is clear now that there will be no Congress until a new government is installed, either by early elections or elections next fall when the term of the present government expires.

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