LONDON (Apr. 16)
Moscow may be amenable to the idea of co-hosting a Middle East regional peace conference, Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir said after meeting here Tuesday with Soviet Prime Minister Valentin Pavlov.
The meeting was the first ever between the prime ministers of Israel and the Soviet Union.
“This meeting with Mr. Pavlov was the first time that we had submitted such proposals to the Soviet Union, and I think or hope that they will accept them sympathetically,” Shamir said.
He said Pavlov had told him the Soviets “will think about them and convey to us their opinion.”
Shamir, Pavlov and an array of other heads of government and chiefs of state are in London for the inauguration of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.
In addition to Pavlov, the Israeli leader has conferred here with British Prime Minister John Major, French President Francois Mitterrand, Czechoslovak President Vaclav Havel and Romanian President Ion Iliescu.
Shamir raised the regional conference proposal with his Soviet counterpart because the Soviet Union and the United States would be the co-hosts.
But Shamir said he stressed to Pavlov that it was “absolutely necessary” for the Soviet Union to re-establish full diplomatic relations with Israel, broken by Moscow in 1967, before it could participate in a Middle East peace conference.