UNITED NATIONS (Sep. 24)
Yitzhak Shamir, Foreign Minister and Deputy Premier of Israel, who arrived in New York Sunday to participate in the 40th session of the General Assembly, opened his diplomatic activity yesterday in a 45-minute meeting with Foreign Minister Giulio Andreotti of Italy.
The meeting was centered on Israel’s economic problems with the European Economic Community (EEC), according to Shamir’s aide and advisor, Avi Pazner, who briefed Israeli reporters here. He said Shamir asked for Italian support of Israel’s desire that its exports to Europe would remain at the same level after Spain joins the EEC at the end of the year.
Andreotti reportedly said that Italy is committed to resolve this issue to Israel’s satisfaction during the next three months. The two Foreign Ministers also discussed the present situation in the Middle East. Pazner said Shamir stressed the latest terrorist activity against Israel, including a booby-trapped van discovered in a Jerusalem street Sunday and safely defused.
He said the Palestine Liberation Organization was behind this act and asked the Italiandiplomat how Israel can be expected to negotiate with an organization such as the PLO which undertakes terrorist acts against Israel.
Other subjects discussed, according to Pazner, included the situation of Soviet Jews. Shamir asked for the Italian government’s help to aid Soviet Jews and Andreotti reportedly agreed to assist on that issue.
MEETING WITH EGYPTIAN FOREIGN MINISTER
One of Shamir’s most important meetings was last evening with Abdel Ismat Meguid, the Foreign Minister of Egypt. Shamir’s aide said the main subject was the border dispute between Israel and Egypt over Taba. Shamir attempted to convince Meguid to resolve the problem through conciliation and that this approach, favored by Israel, is better than arbitration which is preferred by Egypt.
Meguid, according to an Israeli spokesman, told Shamir that a resolution of the Taba dispute along with progress toward solving the Palestinian question is a must before Egypt would agree to return its Ambassador to Israel. The Egyptian Ambassador was recalled to Cairo at the beginning of the Lebanon war in the summer of 1982.
Shamir’s meeting with Meguid was the first in a year between diplomats of the two countries on the foreign ministerial level. Other meetings have been at lower levels.
Other appointments on Shamir’s agenda yesterday included meetings with the West German Foreign Minister, Hans-Dietrich Genscher; Foreign Minister Hans van der Broek of The Netherlands; Foreign Minister Errol Mahabir of Trinidad-Tobago; and Foreign Minister Jacques Poos of Luxembourg who represents the EEC.
Shamir’s schedule today started with an appearance on the ABC-TV “Good Morning America” program. He said that Israel is interested now in opening negotiations with Jordan “just as we talked before with Egypt. We have to proceed step-by-step, one Arab country after the other.”
The Israeli Foreign Minister repeated Israel’s opposition to any dealings with the PLO. “There are millions of Palestinian Arabs who are not members of the PLO,” with whom Israel will be willing to negotiate, Shamir said.
Shamir suggested that King Hussein of Jordan has risked his own position by attempting to bring PLO members into the peace process. He said that the presence of the PLO in Jordan poses a threat to the King. Shamir said that the U.S. should try to convince Jordan to enter into direct negotiations with Israel. “This is the best way that will lead to peace,” he stated.
OTHER SCHEDULED MEETINGS
Before the start of Yom Kippur this evening, Shamir has meetings scheduled with President Julio Sanquinetti of Uruguay and with five Foreign Ministers. They are Sir Geoffrey Howe of Britain; Roland Dumas of France; Peter Barry of Ireland; Augusto Ocampo of Colombia and Enrique Inglesias of Uruguay. Shamir will attend Yom Kippur services at the Park East Synagogue.
On his further agenda are meetings with Secretary of State George Shultz and other ranking U.S. officials in Washington on October 8, and meetings with the foreign ministers of two East European countries, Poland and Hungary. His meeting with the latter will be the first ever between Israeli and Hungarian foreign ministers.