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Israelis Welcomed in Qatar for Negotiations on Arms Control

May 4, 1994
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Amid statements welcoming them to the Persian Gulf emirate, Israeli negotiators took their place among 37 other delegations for the start of multilateral talks on arms control this week in Qatar.

“How good it is to see Israeli and Arab delegates sitting together here. It augurs well for peace,” British Parliament member Greville Janner said Tuesday at the start of the meeting.

As the business sessions of the talks got under way, Qatar’s foreign minister. Sheikh Hamad al-Dhan, applauded the progress in the Israeli-Palestinian talks. He said the overall aim of the entire region was achieving a just, comprehensive peace that would solve the Palestinian problem.

The solution to that problem, he said, must include the return of Arab lands to their owners, including “conquered Jerusalem.”

The foreign minister called for a balancing of Israeli and Arab interests, especially in matters related to Israel’s present and future nuclear capability. If this was not done, he stressed, it would result in a new regional arms race.

The Israeli delegation was led by David Ivri, director-general of the Defense Ministry and former air force commander. The delegation was accompanied by a contingent of Israeli journalists.

While the Qatari authorities were eager to make the Israelis’ stay an enjoyable one, security surrounding them was very tight.

Israel was one of 13 Middle East countries attending the talks, along with representatives from 25 other states.

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