Egypt and Israel Summoned by U.N. Mediator to Rhodes to Start Armistice Talks Next Week
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Egypt and Israel Summoned by U.N. Mediator to Rhodes to Start Armistice Talks Next Week

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The governments of Egypt and Israel have been ed by U.N. acting Palestine mediator Dr. Ralph Bunche to start their direct negotiations for an armistice on January 11 or 12 on the Greek Island of Rhodes, former ?headquarters of the late U.N. mediator, Count Folke Bernadotte, it was announced ?re today.

The announcement was made by Dr. Bunche, addressing a meeting of the Security council’s special committee on Palestine which was established to deal with the en##rement of U.N. resolutions on the Negev.After hearing Dr. Bunche’s report, the committee agreed unanimously that in ?ew of the fact that the acceptance of the cease-fire in the Negev is to be “followed ? direct negotiations between representatives of the governments of Egypt and Israel ?der U.N. chairmanship,” for the purpose of reaching an armistice, there is no necessity at present for any further action on the part of the committee.

Dr. Bunche told the meeting that the acceptance of the cease-fire and of direct negotiations by Egypt and Israel was “a very promising” development. His chief of staff, Brig. Gen. William E. Biley, who also appeared before the committee, expressed the belief that with the acceptance of the cease-fire by the Egyptians and the Israelis, “we will now have a follow-through in the Arab world for armistice and peace in the Middle East.”


Mahmoud Bey Fawzi of Egypt emphasized that his country’s acceptance of the cease-fire order and readiness to initiate armistice negotiations were a part of Egyp’s policy of giving full cooperation to the Security Council in the re-establishment of peace in and around Palestine. He expressed the hope that complete truce supervision of the United Nations, according to the resolution of Dec. 29, would be ?ensured. He asked that the “proper atmosphere” for the armistice negotiations be provided by the Security Council.

Consul-General Arthur Lourie, appearing as Israel’s representative, emphasized that Israel has no designs on the territorial integrity of any of the Arab states and that the Israeli Government desires to live in peace with all the neighboring Arab countries. “There is much in the mediator’s report to encourage us to believe that the time may soon be at hand when the peoples of Israel and of the Arab states can put aside their weapons and enter into a new era of common effort for their mutual betterment and prosperity,” he said.

“It is In that spirit,” he continued, “that my government looks forward to the forthcoming negotiations, eager that the recent conflicts will be relegated far into memory’s past, and hopeful that with the assistance of the U.N. Conciliation Commission the existing truce shall be rapidly transformed into an armistice les?ling to a just and honorable peace for all concerned.”

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