Menu JTA Search

Labor Party Endorses Conditionally the ‘vienna’ Mideast Peace Formula

The Labor Party last night endorsed in principle the Middle East peace formula drafted by Austrian Chancellor Bruno Kreisky and the former West German Chancellor Willy Brandt at the Socialist International conference in Vienna earlier this month. Its adoption, however, was conditioned on clarifications prepared by former Premier Yitzhak Rabin and Labor MK Yossi Sarid which emphasized that Labor opposes return to the 1967 borders although it supports territorial compromises.

The Labor position is that the exact location of future boundaries remain to be determined in peace negotations. Labor agrees with the Kreisky-Brandt formula that the Palestinian question should be solved in all its aspects but rules out a Palestinian state. The Labor Party stipulated that those Palestinians who would participate in the determination of their future would be elected from among personages on the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Under no circumstances would Israel agree to negotiate with the PLO, the Labor Party said.

The resolution endorsing the Kreisky-Brandt formula was adopted after a lengthy report by Labor Alignment chairman Shimon Peres on his meeting in Vienna with President Anwar Sadat of Egypt which coincided with the emergence of the Kreisky-Brandt document. Peres was sharply critical of Premier Menachem Begin.

He said that contrary to Begin’s claims of recent days, the Premier had full knowledge in advance of his proposed meeting with Sadat and even suggested to Peres what questions to ask the Egyptian leader. It was only after the meeting that Begin dissociated himself from it, Peres said.

Former Premier Golda Meir was also critical of the Begin policies. But in her view, Begin was too soft when he offered to return Sinai to Egyptian sovereignty even though he insisted that Jewish settlements there remain intact and under the protection of the Israeli army even after a peace settlement is signed.

NEXT STORY