JERUSALEM (Nov. 3)
President Chaim Herzog left Sunday on an 18-day State visit to Australasia and Southeast Asia, undertaken, he said, to advance Israel’s good image and promote its trade with that region.
In a radio interview prior to his departure aboard an Israel Air Force plane, Herzog said his trip is important politically because it will give Israel a high-profile public platform from which to combat anti-Israel propaganda.
Herzog, accompanied by his wife, Aura, will visit Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, the Philippines and Singapore. The President stressed Israel’s efforts to broaden its trade with a region that has emerged in recent years as one of the world’s major commercial centers.
He described Australia as an awakening giant. He noted that Singapore is an important conduit for economic contacts with the People’s Republic of China. Singapore and the Philippines, with large Moslem populations, have been targets of Palestine Liberation Organization and Libyan propaganda.