President Gerald Ford said in a Washington interview on Thursday (7 August) he was increasingly optimistic over the prospects for a new Sinai agreement between Egypt and Israel.
GV White House
CU Ford speaks " The Congress was totally wrong .... the Cyprus problem."
CU Ford speaks "Both of those countries .... is a possibility."
TRANSCRIPT: PRESIDENT FORD: SEQ 4: "The Congress was totally wrong with the House of Representatives why do I say that. First they haven't solved the Cyprus problems. Number two they've weakened NATO. Number three because of the Turkish aid embargo they have lessened our own national security capability by preventing us from using intelligence gathering installations in Turkey. Congress is harming our foreign policy. The decision of the House of Representatives to continue the Turkish aid embargo seriously jeopardise our foreign policy and will undercut in a significant way our own national security, including undercut in a significant way our own national security, including that of NATO -- and it hasn't solved the Cyprus problem."
PRESIDENT FORD: "Both of those countries have to understand that flexibility at this crucial time is important for the peace of that area of the world and possibly the peace of the world. Israel has to be more flexible. I think Egypt has to respond. If there isn't movement in the Middle East right now the potential for war is increased significantly and a war in the Middle East today has broader potential ramifications than any time in the past. And we've had four wars in the Middle East since 1946 or 7. A fifth one not only means that Israel will be fighting the Arabs but the potential of the confrontation between United States and the Soviet Union is a possibility."
Initials BB/2300 RS/PN/BB/2310
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: President Gerald Ford said in a Washington interview on Thursday (7 August) he was increasingly optimistic over the prospects for a new Sinai agreement between Egypt and Israel.
But he said that both Israel and Egypt must understand that flexibility was important for peace in the Middle East and possibly for peace throughout the world.
"Israel has to be more flexible, and I think Egypt has to respond", said Ford.
But first Mr. Ford commented on the Turkish-Greece confrontation, and the continuing refusal of Congress to lift the arms sale embargo on Turkey."
Mr. Ford then discussed the Middle East situation: