Levy Critical of E.c.’s Threats, but Says Talks Reached Agreements

Foreign Minister David Levy criticized the European Community on Wednesday over its threat of sanctions against Israel for alleged mistreatment of Palestinians, but said nevertheless that his talks with three E.C. foreign minister here this week were conducted in a “good atmosphere.”

Levy told the Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee that although there are many differences, he did reach agreements with his visitors on a number of issue, Levy said, but he did not elaborate

He stressed, however, that it was no small achievement to hold the talks given the E.C’s deep differences with Israel.

The European delegation was headed by Italian Foreign Minister Gianni de Michelis current chairman of the E.C. Council of Minister He was accompanied by Foreign Minister Gerard Collins of Ireland and Foreign Minister Jacque Poos of Luxembourg.

“We are called extremists for asking for dialogue with our neighbors,” Levy said, referring to the government’s contention that the the Middle East problem is not Israel’s dispute with the Palestinians but the state of war perpetuated by all of the Arab states except Egypt.

“With all our desire for peace, we also want to live,” said Levy, adding that “we live in a jungle where there is a desire to destroy our states.”

Defense Minister Moshe Arens briefed the Knesset committee Wednesday on measures taken to combat stoning and gasoline bomb attacks on cars in the administered territories.

He said he ordered the army to deploy more troops along the main highways and to pave new roads that bypass Arab towns.

NEXT STORY