Syria issued a challenge to Egypt on Saturday (14 August) to take a more active part in confronting Israel.
GV INTERIOR: President Al-Assad of Syria seated with Dr. Hassan Sabri Al-Kholi.
SCU: Assad PAN ACROSS TO AL- Kholi.
GV: Assad and Al-Kholi.
GV: Assad seated with Libyan Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs.
SV: Assad PAN TO Libyan Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs
The Syrian call to Egypt came on the eve of President Assad's departure for Colombo, Sri Lanka, to attend the Non-Aligned Summit meeting beginning on Monday (16 August). President Anwar al-Sadat will also be at the summit.
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Background: Syria issued a challenge to Egypt on Saturday (14 August) to take a more active part in confronting Israel. A government statement said Egypt should send troops to southern Lebanon to stand on the side of the Syrian army in defence of Lebanese soil against Israeli intervention. The call came on the same day that the Syrian President, Hafez al-Assad, met Arab League envoy, Hassan Sabri al-Kholi, to discuss efforts for a new Lebanese peace plan.
SYNOPSIS: President Assad and Dr.Kholi held their discussions in the Syrian capital, Damascus. Dr. Kholi arrived from Beirut where he has been leading recent attempts by the Arab League to get a permanent ceasefire. Over 50 ceasefire agreements have been breached in the past. Reuters, quoting informed sources in Lebanon, said that Dr. Kholi was carrying proposals for a new Lebanese peace plan on his visit to Damascus but the envoy would give no details.
Later in the day, President Assad met the Libyan Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Abuzaid Durda. Both Syria and Libya opposed Egypt's 1975 interim settlement with Israel and have called for a united Arab front against Israel. But Syria's call for Egyptian intervention in Lebanon is seen only as a reflection of the continuing poor relations between Egypt and some of her neighbours.