JERUSALEM (Jan. 16)
Foreign Minister Moshe Dayan warned Egypt today that threats and ultimatums will not force Israel to concede more than it felt it could without endangering the Jewish State. “We are responsible for Israel’s future, not for Egypt, ” he said in talking to Israeli reporters.
Dayan was referring to the remarks made by Egyptian President Anwar Sadat in interviews with the Jerusalem Post and the Arabic magazine October, and to Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohammed Ibrahim Kaamel’s arrival statement yesterday that peace was “impossible” without an Israeli withdrawal and the realization of Palestinian rights.
“Better that the Sadat initiative should slip through our fingers than that the security and survival of the State of Israel should slip through our fingers, “Dayan said. He noted that even if Sadat was sincere in his threats that the initiative would fail, Israel could only concede as much as its security considerations allowed.
Dayan hosted Kaamel and his top aides at a lunch today which he said was more of a social event than a working session. Secretary of State Cyrus Vance arrived at Ben Gurion Airport early this evening and was scheduled to meet informally with the Israeli and Egyptian delegations before the formal opening of the political talks tomorrow.
VANCE: U.S. COMMITTED TO PEACE
Dayan, in welcoming Vance at the airport, expressed confidence that the U.S. would play a helpful role in the Jerusalem talks starting tomorrow. “The only justification of imposing such work on you is that it may bring peace,” he told the Secretary of State. Vance said he was happy to visit Israel again. “I come with a sense of the importance of the moment,” he said. He added that tomorrow the U.S. will join Israel and Egypt in the talks “in Jerusalem, city of peace, talks that concern peace.”
He stated that “President Carter has asked me to represent the U.S. in the (political) committee’s deliberations. The U.S. wishes to demonstrate, in her participation, her commitments toward peace.” Vance noted that President Anwar Sadat of Egypt and Premier Menachem Begin of Israel created the conditions that enable the talks to begin. He promised that the U.S. will be an active partner and will help to achieve progress.