• Short Summary

    Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin has returned home after his visit to the United States where he discussed his peace plans for the Middle East with President Jimmy Carter.

  • Description

    CU Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin speaking in New York

    SCU Begin listening to question

    CU Begin speaking

    SCU Begin listening to question

    CU Begin speaking

    SV PLO representative at the U.N. Zehdi Terzi seated at desk

    BEGIN: "I will present the whole plan to President Sadat and I will, of course, also inform him about my talks in Washington with the President and Secretary. Nothing will be hidden from him. He can say 'Yes'. He cannot say 'No'. The proposals are un-rejectionable. They can be subject for negotiations, for talks, but in the essence, this is a real peace plan."

    BEGIN: "Who can imagine that a man who would like to destroy the state of Israel will be candidate. I don't think he would wish to be a candidate. So therefore, it will be a democratic vote, a secret ballot. They will choose the man who will conduct their affairs. But of course, those who are bent on destruction, either of Israel or Jordan will be candidate."

    BEGIN: "President Sadat wouldn't have such suspicions. He called me 'my friend' and I am his friend. And I never hinted even during our talks about a separate peace treaty with Egypt. We want a comprehensive peace settlement. We want peace treaty with all our neighbours. Of course, there may be a difference of time. For instance, if President Sadat is willing to sign with me a peace treaty and Syrians come in two months later, what is wrong with that? Let me remind you that the Syrians signed the (indistinct) agreement in 1949 - seven months after Egypt had signed it. So that may happen and it would not be any problem whatsoever. But how can I use Sadat? Sadat is a very intelligent, very clever, man. Perhaps he uses me. I don't know. Anyhow, I don't use President Sadat. He wants peace. I want peace. Let us give a chance. And let us have peace."

    TERZI: "Begin's proposal is a defiance to the charter of the United Nations. It is a defiance to the relevant resolutions adopted at the United Nations. Begin's aim is clear. He wants to create a Bantustan. He wants to create maybe an enlarged municipality. Or why not say it, he wants to a ghetto for the Palestinian Arabs in their own homeland. In this ghetto he plans to have the Palestinian Arabs contained under the control of Israeli army bayonets."

    The Israeli Prime Minister spent a few hours in Britain on tuesday (20 December) to brief his British counterpart, Mr. James Callaghan. He also met a special emissary from the French government. Mr. Begin told a news conference in London that he hoped Christians will not mind his meeting with President Sadat on Christmas Day "because it is for peace".

    Initials BB/0320


    Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved

    Background: Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin has returned home after his visit to the United States where he discussed his peace plans for the Middle East with President Jimmy Carter. Reports from the Egyptian capital of Cairo suggest the Egyptians believe that the plan holds promise of real progress towards peace. It involves Israel's withdrawal from Sinal and local self-rule for the people of the West Banks and the Gaza Strip. Mr. Begin and President Anwar Sadat are to meet in Egypt on Christmas Day. Before leaving New York for home on Monday (19 December), Mr. Begin told journalists that the President would find his peace plan "un-rejectionable".

    SYNOPSIS: He wants home rule for West Bank residents and a right to stand for office - for most people, not everybody.

    Mr. Begin denied that he was exploiting President Sadat or trying to force him into a separate peace.

    But the PLO representative at the United Nations, Zehdi Terzi, denounced Mr. Begin's 'homeland' plan.

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    Reuters - Source to be Verified
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