Menu JTA Search

Shultz Urges Acceptance of Reagan’s Mideast Plan; Calls for ‘true Peace’ in the Middle East

Secretary of State George Shultz, terming the Middle East dispute the “most complex of international conflicts,” warned today that world peace cannot be achieved unless and until “this terrible regional conflict is settled.” He called on all parties concerned to accept President Reagan’s Middle East peace plan.

Addressing the United Nations General Assembly, Shultz stated, “I call on all concerned to accept President Reagan’s challenge and hasten the realization of true peace in the Middle East.”

The Secretary of State said that Israel’s just requirement for peace with secure borders is intertwined with fulfilling the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people. “Of the nations in the world which need and deserve peace, Israel surely holds a pre-eminent place. Of the peoples of the world who need and deserve a place with which they can truly identify, the Palestinian claim is undeniable,” Shultz declared.

“But Israel can only have peace in a context in which the Palestinian people also realize their legitimate rights,” he said. And “similarly, the Palestinian people will be able to achieve their legitimate rights only in a context which gives Israel what it so clearly has a right to demand — to exist and to exist in peace and security.”

DESCRIBES ROLE OF U.S. MARINES

Commenting on the dispatch of U.S. marines to Beirut, Shultz said the marines together with troops from Italy and France “are helping the Lebanese government and armed forces assure the safety of the peoples of that tormented capital.” He said the marines are in Lebanon “to speed the moment when all foreign forces depart from Lebanon.”

Shultz stressed that there must be an early agreement on a timetable “for the full application of Lebanon’s independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity. Lebanon deserves the world’s help — to secure peace and to rebuild its thriving society.”

He said the agony of the Middle East is “a searing wound on our consciousness. The region is in constant ferment. Unrest flared into violence, terror, insurrection and civil strife. War still is war.” He said the Middle East conflict cannot be resolved by force or by rhetoric. “It can only be resolved through the give-and-take of direct negotiations leading to the establishment of practical arrangements on the ground.”

Shultz stressed that the Camp David agreement “with its formula of peace for territory, remains available to those who would accept the challenge” of peace. He said the road to peace will not be easy but that Reagan’s plan makes the journey toward peace “safer and easier.” Shultz’s remarks on the Middle East were part of a 20-page speech to the General Assembly outlining U.S. foreign policy.

NEXT STORY