NEW YORK (Mar. 11)
Franz-Josef Strauss, leader of the opposition Christian Democratic Union (CDU), in West Germany, said here yesterday that his party strongly opposes any communication or negotiations with terrorist groups, including the Palestine Liberation Organization and its leader, Yasir Arafat.
Strauss, who is the Minister President of Bavaria and the CDU’s candidate for Chancellor, addressed the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. He said the United Nations invitation to Arafat in 1974 was a “blasphemy.” Although he did not name other countries, such as Britain and France which have been holding discussions with PLO leaders, Strauss made it clear that any West German government he headed would not go along with such a policy.
The CDU leader criticized the present Bonn government for failure thus for to join in the boycott of the 1980 Olympic Games in Moscow. In that connection, he noted that the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin “gave Adolf Hitler his greatest psychological break-through.”
Strauss said that he has told Arab leaders with whom he has met that “Israel is not your enemy, that Israel is not expansionist, that Israel wants only to co-exist with you in peace and that your real enemies are the Soviet Union and the radical forces in the Arab world which it supports and which seek instability and upheaval.”
Strauss also said that the governments of West Europe should concentrate on strengthening President Anwar Sadat of Egypt rather than flirt with the PLO terrorist. “I am fully aware of what the PLO means and I deplore any controls with its leadership, he said.