Cabinet Confirms Ben-elissar As Israel’s First Envoy to Egypt

Eliabu Ben-Elissar, a 48-year-old scholar who entered Herut Party politics and become one of Premier Menachem Begin’s top aides, was confirmed by the Cabinet today as Israel’s first Ambassador to Egypt. He will assume his post in Cairo on February 26 when Israel and Egypt exchange ambassadors.

When the Liloud government took office in 1977, Begin named Ben-Elissar Director General of the Prime Minister’s Office. In that capacity he become closely involved in the peace negotiations with Egypt. He beaded the first Israeli diplomatic delegation to Cairo for peace talks at the Mena House in December, 1977, one month after President Anwar Sadat’s historic visit to Jerusalem He continued to be closely involved in the peace process, accompanying Begin to Camp David in September, 1978, and curried out various missions for the Premier in connection with the peace negotiations.

Born in Racom, Poland, Ben-Elissar lost his immediate family in the Holocaust. He immigrated to Palestine in 1942 but pursued higher education abroad. He received a doctoral degree from the University of Geneva. His thesis was on the foreign policy of the Third Reich and the Jews which later become the title of a book published in Paris in 1969.

He held various positions in the government between 1954 and 1964 and in 1971 became head of the information department of the Herut movement, a position he retained until Liked won the 1977 elections.

Ben-Elissar married for the second time last March. His wife is Nitzo Graetz. They have no children. With his appointment as Ambassador officially approved, the Foreign Ministry is expected to name the other members of the Israeli diplomatic mission to Cairo by the end of this week. If will probably number 10 persons. The entire Embassy staff is expected to number 40. A delegation of senior officials will leave for Cairo tomorrow to find a building for the new Embassy.

NEXT STORY