JERUSALEM (May. 16)
President Yitzhak Navon toured the area of Gush Etzion today, the first Presidential tour beyond the Green Line in the State’s history. The President, however, denied that his visit to the region had any far-reaching political significance. “My purpose was to visit the place and see its development. After all, the beginnings of Jewish settlement started here in 1927,” he said.
During his visit, Navon spoke with both Jewish and Arab residents and paid a visit to the family of Prisoner of Zion Yosef Mendelevitch. The President said he hoped for a successful conclusion of the negotiations on autonomy, so that “I, as President, won’t have to apply for a visa to visit here again.” In the course of Navon’s visit, it was reported that a new Jewish settlement will be established in the region, under the name of “Hafurit.”