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Tamir: Treaty with Egypt Must Be Contingent on Egyptian Guarantees of Israeli Access to Sinai Oil

February 5, 1979
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Justice Minister Shmuel Tamir said yesterday that Israel’s evacuation of Sinai under a peace treaty with Egypt must be made contingent on Egyptian guarantees of Israeli access to oil from the Sinai fields. Citing the cutoff of oil from Iran which had supplied a substantial portion of Israel’s petroleum needs, Tamir said on a radio interview that “unless our permanent oil supply is assured there is no point for Israel to quit Sinai.

The Sinai fields provide about 15 percent of Israel’s oil: While Egypt has promised to sell oil to Israel at world market prices and the U.S. is committed to supply Israel with oil for five years in case of an emergency, Tamir wants more iron-clad guarantees. Tamir appeared to welcome the stalemate in the Israeli-Egyptian peace negotiations, observing that it had brought a “better perspective” and that “there are things which are now more clearly visible than before.”

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