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Sharansky Still the Choice for U.N. Ambassadorship

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Natan Sharansky is still the Foreign Ministry’s preferred candidate for the vacant post of Israeli ambassador to the United Nations, Foreign Minister Moshe Arens said Thursday.

Arens gave this affirmation a day after the ministry appointments committee failed to take up the U.N. post in its discussion of a batch of new appointments to go into effect later this year.

Sharansky’s candidacy aroused controversy here and abroad when it was first mentioned some months ago by Deputy Foreign Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

Netanyahu was not present at the appointments committee Wednesday because he has been sent by Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir to Ottawa to brief the Canadian government on the peace proposals Shamir presented to President Bush last week in Washington.

Among those nominated by the committee is former Israeli air force fighter ace Ron Pecker, who will be consul general in Los Angeles.

Pecker is a relative hard-liner on the issue of the territories and gave his help to the Likud during last year’s election campaign.

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