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December 31, 1993 - Image 12

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1993-12-31

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

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Warren Christopher meeting with Israeli military.

Arab Boycott
Is Breaking Down

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12/31/93

New York (JTA) — The Arab
boycott of companies doing
business with Israel is
"largely breaking down al-
ready," Secretary of State
Warren Christopher said
this week.
Mr. Christopher said that
while there is likely to be no
formal renunciation of the
Arab League's secondary
and tertiary boycott of
Israel, "you can see it taking
place on the practical level."
Mr. Christopher was
speaking to reporters,
following a private address
to Conference of Presidents
of Major American Jewish
Organizations at which he
reported on his recent visit
to the Middle East.
The secretary of state said
that "ice is being broken" in
terms of Israel's relations
with the Arab world.
He confirmed reports that
Morocco had promised to es-
tablish mail and telephone
links with Israel, and said
that Tunisia is likely to take
similar steps, including
permitting Israelis of Tuni-
sian origin to visit the coun-
try.
Mr. Christopher said he
had the sense that the ap-
parently deadlocked Israeli-
Palestinian talks over the
details of the Israeli army's
withdrawal from the Gaza
Strip and parts of the West
Bank are "moving forward
now."
He reiterated that the
United States will not
intervene in the talks unless
both sides request it.
But he said that the peace
process is irreversible.
"The changes in attitudes
have affected entire
circumstances in the re-
gion, so I don't think it will
go back to status quo ante,"

he told the reporters.
He told the Conference of
Presidents that the United
States was pressing PLO
Chairman Yassir Arafat to
abide by the accord he
signed with Israel and was
urging him not to cling to
symbols, according to people
present during his speech.
Regarding Syrian Presi-
dent Hafez Assad's promise
to allow his country's re-
maining 800 Jews to leave
the country by the end of the
year, Mr. Christopher said
he was confident the pledge
would be "substantially car-
ried out" by the time Mr.
Clinton meets with Mr.

The United States
will not intervene
unless both sides
request it.

Assad next month, according
to sources present at the ad-
dress.
But fulfilling that promise
is not a precondition for the
meeting, Mr. Christopher
reportedly told the Jewish
organizational leaders. He
was quoted as saying,
however, that Syrian failure
to keep the promise would
"affect the atmosphere of the
talks" with Mr. Clinton.
While the meeting broke
little new ground, "the im-
portant thing is he's sen-
sitive to our concerns and
feels he had to speak to the
Jewish community about his
trip," said Rabbi Israel
Miller, a former chairman of
the Conference of Presidents
who attended the
meeting. ❑

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