Byrne on 8-day Visit to Israel
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Byrne on 8-day Visit to Israel

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Gov. Brendan Byrne of New Jersey, on an eight-day visit to Israel, heard two leaders of the Labor opposition express misgivings over what they viewed as possible negative developments for Israel emerging from the Camp David accords.

Byrne met Friday with former Premier Yitzhak Rabin, who cited the “spotty” record of Egypt in honoring treaty commitments in the past and seemed to imply that the U.S. was leaning too heavily on the Israeli and Egyptian negotiators trying to reach a peace treaty in Washington.

The governor and his wife, Jean, were visiting Israel as guests of the Israeli government. They met with former Foreign Minister Yigal Allon at his home in Ginossar on the Sea of Galilee. Allon said his concern that the U.S. might see the Camp David accord between Israel and Egypt as a model for total Israeli withdrawal from other occupied territories prompted him to abstain in last month’s Knesset vote to ratify the Camp David agreements.

The Byrnes arrived in Israel Thursday accompanied by Frank Lautenberg, national president of the United Jewish Appeal, and Mr. and Mrs. Martin Fox, Jewish community leaders in New Jersey.


During the 90-minute meeting with Rabin at his Tel Aviv office, the former premier noted that Egypt had abrogated its treaty of friendship with the Soviet Union and had also broken with Syria after years of close alliance. Egypt’s record in honoring its international commitments heightened the risk Israel is taking for peace, he said. But he stressed that neither that risk nor others inherent in the peace process could influence him to oppose the process itself.

Rabin told Byrne that his advice to President Carter should be to give the Israelis and Egyptians more freedom to negotiate between themselves. Commenting on reports that Egypt wants a five-year review clause incorporated in the treaty, Rabin said there was no precedent for such a demand and that it was unacceptable to Israel.

Byrne and his party did considerable sightseeing during their first three days in Israel. They visited Nazareth and Tiberias and toured the Golan Heights. Their guides explained why Israel could never withdraw completely from that territory, which commands virtually all of eastern Galilee and from which Syrian artillery shelled Israeli villages at will before the 1967 war.

The governor received a briefing on the military situation from Brig. Gen. Yehoshua Saguy, deputy chief of intelligence. He toured the old port city of Jaffa and its restored quarters now inhabited mainly by artists and drove to Jerusalem yesterday afternoon. Mayor Teddy Kollek took time out from his election campaign to conduct the Governor and Mrs. Byrne on a tour of the city.

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