MADRID (May. 25)
Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir wound up a five-day European trip here Thursday night, professing to be satisfied with the responses he got to Israel’s peace plan from the leaders of Britain and Spain.
Although neither Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, with whom Shamir conferred in London earlier in the week, nor his Spanish host, Prime Minister Felipe Gonzalez Marquez, endorsed the plan, each promised to give it "serious consideration," Shamir said.
Gonzalez told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency after a state dinner in Shamir’s honor Wednesday night that "Spain will explore all the avenues of the Israeli peace initiative."
But he repeated his warning that the plan is doomed unless the Palestine Liberation Organization is given a role in the peace process.
Gonzalez said he had accepted Shamir’s invitation to visit Israel, but no date was set.
The Israeli plan calls for Palestinian elections in the West Bank and Gaza Strip to choose representatives with whom Israel would negotiate a five-year interim period of Palestinian self-rule in the territories.
Shamir acknowledged that both Thatcher and Gonzalez had pressed him for details, particularly on voting rights for East Jerusalem Arabs and international supervision of the elections.
He said it was far too early to answer such questions.
"Why should we start squabbling among ourselves, between Europe and us and between America and us, before we receive the go-ahead from the Palestinians and the Arab states?" Shamir told a news conference here.
He adamantly ruled out "now and forever" the idea of an international peace conference to bring about an end to the Middle East conflict. He claimed such a conference would inevitably lead to a Palestinian state.