PARIS (Jan. 16)
Former Israeli Premier Yitzhak Rabin warned here that the Middle East and the adjacent area have become a focal point in the East-West struggle. He said that the Soviet Union is using local conflicts and social unrest to try and topple a number of regimes and eventually control the flow of oil to West Europe, Japan and the United States.
The former Premier told a press conference yesterday that the ultimate Soviet aim might be setting up pro-Soviet regimes in Saudi Arabia and Iran. Rabin said America’s main task now should be to increase its political credibility and create a political environment which would bar the way to Communist subversion and a possible takeover in Saudi Arabia.
He said that Jordan is also potentially endangered and called on Israel and the United States to change their policies and enable King Hussein to join the current peace-making process.
Rabin, who is on a three-day fund-raising four of France, said that what the Middle East needs is “a political answer to its problems.” He said that America and Israel can supply port of the solution. “Washington should look to Jordan as a key partner in the (peace) negotiations and we Israel, should give back (to Jordan) parts of the West Bank in the context of a peace agreement. “Such a change of policy, Rabin said, would enable Hussein to join the peace talks.
The former Premier stressed that the solution to the Palestinian problem passes through an autonomy status for the inhabitants of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. He ruled out, however, an Israeli withdrawal to the pre-1967 armistice lines and a partition of Jerusalem. He also ruled out the creation of a Palestinian state and negotiations with the Palestine Liberation Organization which he described as “a Kremlin stooge.”
Rabin, who is the guest of the French United Jewish Appeal, will address meetings in Paris and confer with local community leaders. He is due to leave Friday for Geneva. (By Edwin Eytan)