JERUSALEM (Sep. 11)
Foreign Minister Shimon Peres formally accepted a U.S. invitation to meet in New York with President Reagan, Secretary of State Goerge Shultz and Egypt’s Foreign Minister Ismat Abdel Meguid.
Peres wrote to Washington on Friday that the Sept. 26 meeting, which has triggered controversy here, could be a welcome opportunity to ensure that avenues toward peace are open for the new administrations in the United States and Israel.
The meeting, Peres added, would also be a constructive forum for exchanging views on ongoing regional developments.
Informed sources in Jerusalem revealed that it was not until this week that Washington made it clear that the president himself would chair the meeting.
As a result, Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir and other Likud leaders charged that the meeting was planned to assist Peres and his Labor Alignment in the election campaign.
Until this week, the diplomatic discussion between Washington and Jerusalem had proceeded on the understanding that Shultz would chair the meeting, and Shamir had not expressed any reservations over that format.
Israeli sources agree with officials in Cairo, who have been quoted as saying that Reagan will probably use the occasion to attempt a last-ditch effort at a compromise agreement over Taba.
Direct talks between the two sides on Taba have reached an impasse, and an international panel of arbitrators is due to present its formal — and binding — verdict at the beginning of October.