UNITED NATIONS (Jun. 8)
Israeli Premier Yitzhak Shamir rejected an offer by U.N. Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar to provide United Nations guarantees to Israel following a peace settlement between Israel and the Arab countries, Israeli officials said here.
Shamir and the secretary-general met for one hour Wednesday. The nature of the proposed United Nations guarantees was not disclosed to the news media.
The Israeli officials reported that Shamir told the secretary-general that the sad experience with international guarantees in the 20th century hardly encourages Israel to follow in that direction.
The officials said Shamir maintained that what is needed for a peace settlement in the Middle East are not guarantees by the United Nations or by the superpowers, but agreements between Israel and the Arab countries, negotiated directly and based on the free will of the parties concerned.
Shamir also told the secretary-general that while he understands that the United States has an interest in holding an international conference for Middle East peace, in his own view, such a conference would not bring about any solutions.
Shamir was accompanied at his meeting with Perez de Cuellar by his close aides and by Israel’s acting permanent representative to the United Nations, Ambassador Yohanan Bein.
The atmosphere at the meeting was described as friendly. The prime minister expressed his respect for the secretary-general’s personal efforts to promote world peace and for the evenhanded way in which he relates to various problems.
But Shamir also conveyed his dismay that the secretary-general presides over an organization with an automatic majority against Israel.
ISRAEL NOT TREATED FAIRLY
He said that except for the positive act by the United Nations in bringing about the establishment of the State of Israel, Israel has not been treated fairly in the world organization.
Shamir praised the role of the United Nations Disengagement Observers Force on the Golan Heights in reducing border tensions between Israel and Syria. He said that UNDOF is a good example of how the United Nations can contribute to peace in the area.
After the meeting, Shamir joined the secretary-general at a luncheon at U.N. headquarters, attended by about a dozen prime ministers and presidents of U.N. member states participating in the General Assembly’s third special session on disarmament.
Earlier in the day, Shamir addressed a meeting of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee at the Regency Hotel.
Meanwhile, diplomatic circles here are expressing considerable interest in Shamir’s scheduled meeting Thursday with Soviet Foreign Minister Eduard Shevardnadze. It will be held at U.N. headquarters and is expected to last an hour.