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Dayan Wants Knesset Debate on Territories

December 14, 1972
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Defense Minister Moshe Dayan called for a full-dress debate in the Knesset on policy in the territories and their future. Speaking in the Knesset yesterday he said the Government had no objection to such a debate.

Observers saw Dayan’s move as an effort to gather support outside his own party for his views, since in the ongoing Labour Party debate his hawkish stand seems to be in the minority. In an open Knesset debate Dayan would probably pick up verbal support from Gahal and the National Religious Party which, in a backhanded way, would strengthen his position in his party.

Reviewing his policy in administering the territories, Dayan stressed repeatedly that the Governor of the Bank of Israel, Moshe Sanbar, believed that administering the territories was not-a burden on Israel’s economy. Dayan said the Governor had specifically permitted him to cite his opinion to the Knesset. His repeated stressing of it was interpreted as a challenge to Finance Minister Pinhas Sapir who has recently complained that the territories were a drain on the economy.

Earlier in the same Knesset session, Dayan revealed that Israel gained IL87.5 million income from oil production in the Sinai in 1971 compared to IL 70 million the year before and IL 40 million in 1968. Dayan was replying to a question from Knesseter Mordechai Ben Porat requesting him to detail income and expenditure in the territories.

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