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Mapam’s Departure Likely Now

The prospects that Mapam will quit the Labor Alignment and go to the voters with its own list of candidates in the May 17 elections increased today after an inconclusive meeting between Mapam leaders and Premier Yitzhak Rabin. Mapam has insisted that one of the conditions for remaining in the Alignment is revision of the Labor Party’s 14 principles for peace negotiations.

It wants Labor to state specifically that territorial concessions in the Judaea and Samaria regions (West Bank) would be a subject for negotiations. Rabin did not reject that demand at today’s meeting but he stated that a clear cut reply could be given only after the Labor Party’s convention in February. Mapam holds its convention Jan. 30, several weeks ahead of Labor, and in the absence of satisfactory replies by then is expected to vote to leave the Labor Alignment.