Military confrontation in Europe and the Middle East were two of the major topics assessed by United States Secretary of State William Rogers during a Washington interview on Sunday (May 16).
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SV INT. Interview with Rogers
CU Rogers answers questions
SV Rogers seated at table (SILENT)
CU Rogers speaks (SOF)
TRANSCRIPT: QUESTION: (SEQ. 5): "Has the upheaval in the government of Egypt prevented any practical implementations or pursuit of that movement?
ROGERS: I'm glad you asked that question. No, not at all. We have seen no sign that there will be any slowdown in discussions this year. They are underway, and I would hope that there will not be any. I have not -- as I said earlier -- any sure way of knowing what the future holds for Egypt, but to date we have had no indication that would suggest that the government was not in complete control, and the conversations that we had there could still be very productive."
On the question of negotiations with the Soviet Union, Mr Rogers felt that Washington would first have to look further into Mr Brezhnev's proposals for talks:
ROGERS: "In the first place, we are asking our ambassador in Moscow to talk to the Soviet officials for certain clarifications which are necessary to understand fully what Mr Brezhnev had in mind. Secondly, I will be going to the NATO meeting in the next couple of weeks, and we will discuss with our allies there how we can proceed with negotiations with the Soviet Union if that seems to be practicable".
QUESTION: What clarification are you seeking from the Russians?
ROGERS: Well, it was a little vague what he had in mind. He talked about "tasting wine" and so forth, and we want to be sure that we understand that. He said we shouldn't ask about the wine, we should drink it first. We would like to know first, is it wine, and is it sweet wine or is it sour? We want to be sure in other words that it has some potential for success. We don't have any desire for a conference unless it can be meaningful. On the other hand, we are very anxious to negotiate with the Soviet Union on the mutual reduction of our force levels in Europe, and we have indicated that to the Soviet Union for some time now".
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Background: Military confrontation in Europe and the Middle East were two of the major topics assessed by United States Secretary of State William Rogers during a Washington interview on Sunday (May 16).
Questions were asked about Mr Rogers' recent peace initiative in the Middle East, then on his reaction on Soviet Party Chairman Leonid Brezhnev's offer to negotiate on the subject of arms and troop levels.
First, Mr Rogers was asked if last week's political crisis in the United Arab Republic had damaged moves towards a lasting peace: