Levy Says Repeal of U.N. Measure Indicates Healthy U.s.-israeli Ties

The repeal of the U.N. resolution branding Zionism as racism “demonstrates that relations between the United States and Israel are friendly,” Israeli Foreign Minister David Levy said Wednesday, a day after meeting with President Bush in Washington.

Levy told the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations that conclusion of the peace talks in Washington on Wednesday was as originally scheduled and did not indicate that the talks were in a state of crisis.

Levy said he told the president that the Arabs must not “delude themselves into thinking the longer they stall on procedure, the greater the chance of the United States intervening. This is how they are acting, and they must be told this is not the proper course of action, and that the U.S. will not intervene.

“We are doing all we can to promote the talks and overcome the obstacles,” said the foreign minister. “It is our initiative, and Israel sincerely wishes for peace.”

What is not compatible with the peace process, Levy said, is Syria’s continuing support for Iranian elements in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley, who are training Hezbollah members for terrorist attacks on Israel.

With regard to the issue of Israeli MIAs, Levy said he recounted to Bush Israel’s role in the release of Western hostages.

“We felt as if they were our sons as well. We did our part and they were reunited with their families. We expect the same feeling to be demonstrated here.

“The president says he feels the same way, has done what he can do and will continue to speak out,” Levy said.

Levy, still jubilant over the U.N. vote two days earlier, told the Conference of Presidents that the victory demanded celebration, not attempts to analyze motivations or speculate on American motivations.

He said Israel was pleased that six Arab countries did not vote and that Egypt’s failure to vote for the repeal was no disappointment.

On the contrary, said Levy, who revealed that shortly before the balloting he received a message from Egyptian Foreign Minister Amre Moussa saying that Egypt had decided not to participate in the vote in order to position itself to lead the non-radical Arab states.

NEXT STORY