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Egyptian Official Says Wording of Accord Less Important Than How Parties Behave After It is Signed

President Anwar Sadat’s special advisor, Said Marai, said today that with good will and dedication it is possible to overcome the present difficulties and sign a peace agreement between Israel and Egypt "very soon." Marai, who will go to Oslo as Sadat’s emissary to accept the 1978 Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the Egyptian leader, told Maariv in a telephone interview from Cairo that the wording of the agreement was less important than how the parties would behave after the agreement is signed.

He reiterated Egypt’s position that there will be no separate peace with Israel, that there must be a timetable for implementation of the autonomy plan on the West Bank and Gaza Strip and that Egypt cannot give the treaty with Israel precedence over past treaties it has signed with other Arab countries. This was a reference to Article VI of the treaty draft which Israel wants included and Egypt wants to drop.

However, according to the Egyptian official, Egypt would be ready to give the treaty with Israel precedence over other treaties only after normal diplomatic, economic and cultural relations are established between the two countries.

Marai said these views would be presented to Secretary of State Cyrus Vance when he arrives in Cairo Sunday. Asked why Sadat decided not to accept the Nobel Prize that he shares with Israeli Premier Menachem Begin in person, Marai said Sadat felt he should remain in Cairo at this crucial juncture in case swift decisions are necessary. He said Sadat’s decision not to go to Oslo was not intended to reflect on anyone else.