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Israeli Officials Mum on Reports of Agreement on Overflights

August 7, 1958
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Israeli officials refused today to discuss press reports that Israel had agreed to the resumption of the British airlift of men and supplies from Cyprus to Jordan over Israel territory.

These officials drew questioners’ attention to a statement issued by Ambassador Abba Eban in Washington yesterday after his meeting with Acting Secretary of State Christian Herter. The essence of that statement was that there had been no change in Israel’s policy on overflights.

The newspaper Maariv reported that on Tuesday afternoon an American jet plane had entered Israel airspace, crossing Kibbutz Menara en route from Lebanon to Jordan.

Privately, Israel sources do not rule out the possibility of an official change in policy as far as overflights are concerned. It is felt that the policy is subject to wide political negotiations. However, it does not seem connected to Israel’s efforts to obtain arms from the West.

The impression here is that Israel has made some progress in Washington and London in its arms quest. However, Israeli observers, recalling past optimism, are skeptical about the final outcome.

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