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Israeli Delegation Explaining to U.s Officials Why Israel is Opposed to Fahd’s Peaceplan

November 12, 1981
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A six-member Israeli delegation began the task today of explaining to American officials why Israel is adamantly opposed to the eight-point Middle East peace plan proposed by Crown Prince Fahd of Saudi Arabia.

The group, made up of government and opposition members of the Knesset, was scheduled to meet with Secretary of State Alexander Haig today. They will go to the White House tomorrow for a meeting with White House Counsellor Edward Meese and National Security Advisor Richard Allen.

The six-member group, led by Moshe Arens, chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Security Committee, who is expected to be Israel’s next Ambassador to the United States, and Chaim Herzog, former Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations, is scheduled to have separate meetings tomorrow with the Senate Armed Services and Foreign Relations Committees. Today they are also meeting with officials of the Republican and Democratic National Committees.

The Israeli delegation, which includes Shlomo Hillel, Joseph Rom, Danny Rosolio and Sara Doron, arrived in Washington yesterday coincidently as President Reagan again said that he found “a hopeful sign” in the Fahd plan which he saw as “implicit” recognition of the State of Israel. The President’s remarks were made at a White House press conference.

It was a similar statement to reporters last month that caused an angry reaction in Israel and resulted in sending the group here to explain why Israel considered the plan a proposal for its liquidation.

Following the angry reaction from Israel, Administration officials, who had been saying they found constructive elements in the Fahd plan while noting there were other points that should first be the result of negotiations, refused any comment on the Fahd plan. They would only say that the only plan the U.S. was committed to for achieving peace in the Mideast was the Camp David process.


At his press conference yesterday, Reagan also reaffirmed commitment to the Camp David process. “I think that the most realistic approach is the one that we are taking, which is the attempt to bring peace in the Middle East must be based on the Camp David accords and 242 Resolution of the United Nations,” he said.

But when asked if he could incorporate any part of the Fahd plan in the Camp David process, Reagan said there was “one” point. “I know that there is also some dispute about what I’m going to say between the parties concerned,” Reagan said.

“But I believe, and I have stated previously that I believe that it’s implicit in the offering of that plan — recognition of Israel’s right to exist as a nation. And this has been one of the sticking points so far with the Arab world refusing to make that acknowledgement. This was why I have referred to it as a hopeful sign. That here was an offer of a plan, whether you agree with it or not, that indicated the willingness to negotiate, which it does imply.”

Reagan went on to say that the plan also “calls for all of the states of the region living together in peace, and I think we all endorse that.”

The Israelis have denied that the plan implies Saudi recognition of Israel or a willingness to negotiate with the Jewish State. Instead, they have warned that the plan is a danger to the existence of Israel because it calls for a Palestinian State on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip with Jerusalem as its capital and which will be governed by the Palestine Liberation Organization.

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