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ISRAELI DEPUTY PREMIER AND FOREIGN MINISTER ANSWERS QUESTIONS ON MEETING WITH PRESIDENT BUSH

 ISRAELI DEPUTY PREMIER AND FOREIGN MINISTER ANSWERS QUESTIONS
 ON MEETING WITH PRESIDENT BUSH
 WASHINGTON, Dec. 17 /PRNewswire/ -- The Embassy of Israel issued the following stakeout with Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister David Levy after his meeting with President Bush at the White House:
 Good morning. We had very good talks which touched upon various matters. I found full understanding with the president and a deep desire to strengthen the ties and the dialogue between us -- the administration and the Israeli government. I left very satisfied with the talks.
 Q: Did the president say anything about the need to advance the peace process?
 A: The peace process is not a matter for others, but for those concerned. It was first and foremost an Israeli initiative, and I pointed out that we are deeply interested in promoting the peace process and have been doing everything possible. It is rightful to stress the importance of continuing with this unequivocal stand. The sides concerned must be the ones who resolve the problem. Therefore there is the principle of direct negotiations without preconditions, and the president, I am pleased to say, agreed with this principle.
 Q: Did you raise in your talks with the president the question of the Israelis missing in action?
 A: As for the Israeli hostages, I will not expatiate on this. You asked whether I raised the subject. Yes, I did, and the matter will be dealt with.
 Q: And what about the loan guarantees?
 A: As for the guarantees, Israel has a major task to fulfill, a humanitarian and national task of the utmost importance. Other nations would find it a formidable task indeed to deal with. Clearly, Israel expects cooperation in this matter. We spoke about the importance of the help in succeeding in overcoming this task. The United States has had a major share in promoting it.
 Q: Did you say this to the President?
 A: Yes I did, and I shall not expand on it.
 Levy: What we saw yesterday at the United Nations and the openness and friendship of the president today is a signal for all to watch, of the alliance between the United States and Israel, the democracy of the Middle East, which is based on the sublime values which we share, which strengthen us and from which we draw strength. This was a great moral victory which we have won together. It was a moment when, with our very own eyes, we saw that a lie cannot live on eternally, and ultimately light shall drive out darkness. It was a momentous and historic hour for the United States and Israel alike. For the great United States it was a great moment indeed. It was a moral victory, too, for the small State of Israel, because of its faith and its perseverance.
 (Note: Simultaneous translation).
 -0- 12/17/91
 /CONTACT: Israel Press Center, 202-466-9494, -9495, -9496 or -9497/ CO: Embassy of Israel ST: District of Columbia IN: SU:


TW -- DC007 -- 2983 12/17/91 13:22 EST
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Date:Dec 17, 1991
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