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Egyptian Officials Visiting Israel

Muhammad Radwan, Egypt’s Minister for Culture, arrived here today on a three-day official visit which, he said, he hoped would open “new channels of understanding” between the two countries.

Radwan is the guest of the Israeli Minister of Education and Culture Zevulun Hammer who greeted him at the airport. Hammer observed that the exchange of visits by teachers, students and persons engaged in cultural enterprises would give a “new dimension to the peace treaty” between Israel and Egypt.

Egypt’s top-ranking military man, Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Abed Rab el-Nabi Hafez visited an Israeli army base today and inspected the production line of the Israel-built Merhava tank. Hafez is midway through a five-day tour of Israel as the guest of Chief of Staff Gen. Rafael Eitan. Yesterday he visited both east and west Jerusalem and prayed at the El Aksa Mosque on the Temple Mount. His visit to Jerusalem was described as “unofficial and strictly private.”

SETBACK IN NORMALIZATION TALKS

Meanwhile, the normalization talks between Israel and Egypt suffered a setback today because of disagreement over levies on Israeli truck drivers using the overland route to Egypt across Sinai. The talks were broken off temporarily, the Foreign Ministry said because the Egyptians are demanding a higher fee than Israel is willing to pay. Israel agreed in principle to the tax which could compensate Egypt for the lower cost of fuel in that country.

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