NEW YORK (Dec. 17)
Meir Rosenne, Israel’s Ambassador to the United States, expressed hope today that negotiations between Israel and Egypt on the outstanding problems between the two countries will start in the near future.
Addressing a meeting of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations here, Rosenne said, however, that “the cold peace” between Israel and Egypt which started with the war in Lebanon in June, 1982, still continues.
“We hope there will be a change in the future,” Ros enne said, adding that he also hoped that when the negotiations between Israel and Egypt begin, they will discuss the return of the Egyptian Ambassador to Israel after a more than two year absence and a resolution of the border dispute over Taba.
Today’s meeting of the Presidents Conference was convened to honor its immediate past chairman, Julius Berman, who was succeeded by Kenneth Bialkin last July after serving two one-year terms. Among those paying tribute to Berman were Rosenne, Binyamin Netanyahu, Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations, and Naphtalie Lavie, Israel’s Consul General in New York, who praised Berman for his commitment and dedication while serving as chairman of the Presidents Conference.
Congratulatory messages were received from President Reagan, Vice President George Bush and Israeli Premier Shimon Peres. Yehuda Hellman, executive vice chairman of the Presidents Conference, presented Berman with a Tiffany gold clock as a token of esteem.
ISRAEL READY TO SIT WITH ANY ARAB COUNTRY
In a brief review of the political situation, Rosenne said that there has been no progress in the talks between Israel and Lebanon at Nakura. He also said that the stalemate over the Palestinian problem continues and there is no change in the attitude of Jordan “to sit and negotiate with Israel.”
He said that Israel “is ready to sit with any Arab country and negotiate without pre-conditions or on the basis of the Camp David accords. “The Ambassador added that there is no change in the attitude of the “terrorist PLO” toward the Palestinian problem.
Today’s meeting was to have been addressed by Israel’s Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Yitzhak Shamir who was forced to cancel his appearance and flew home last night to deal with a political crisis in the national unity government. (See separate story, P. 1.)