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Macmillan Says Bermuda Parley Agreed on Measures for Mid-east Peace

March 25, 1957
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Measures to assure a period of Arab-Israel pacification which may lead to a permanent settlement will be taken as a result of decisions reached at the four-day conference that closed here today, British I rime Minister Harold Macmillan told a press conference after the conclusion of the historic top-level parley.

An official communique, however, stated only that agreement had been reached between President Eisenhower and Prime Minister Macmillan “on the need for speedy implementation of the recent United Nations General Assembly resolutions dealing with the Gaza Strip and the Gulf of Akaba.”

British and American spokesman refused to elaborate on this brief statement, insisting that he UN resolutions on the natter are sufficiently clear. The resolutions called for the stationing of UN Emergency Forces in both areas, but said nothing about length of stay nor function of UNEF, other than to voice vaguely a UN responsibility in the Gaza Strip.

The Prime Minister, replying to a query about assuring Israel’s security, told the newsmen that permanent security for Israel and permanent good relations between the Jewish State and its Arab neighbors can be achieved only through a permanent peace.


Mr. Macmillan said that the U.S. and Britain had agreed on both short-term and long-term proposals concerning the Middle East, indicating that the entire gamut of Middle East problems had been dealt with. He emphasized that Washington and London hope that Egypt will carry out UN decisions on the Middle East in both spirit and letter.

The joint communique issued several hours before said that the President and the Prime Minister had agreed on the importance of Egyptian compliance with both the letter and spirit of the UNs October 12 resolution on the Suez Canal. That resolution stressed the desirability of insulating the canal from the politics of any country, and called for absolute freedom of navigation through the waterway.

The communique spoke of supporting efforts by UN Secretary General Dag Hammarskjold to bring about a settlement of the Suez issue in accordance with the principles of the October 13 resolution. Finally, the communique reported that an exchange of views would continue between the two top leaders of the Western alliance.

At his press conference, the Prime Minister refused to state what measures had been envisaged in the event either Egypt or Israel violated its international obligations. “It is no use jumping fences before we come to them,” he insisted. He also avoided a reply on how the increased American support of the Bagdad Pact would affect the Middle East.

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