President Sadat of Egypt has asked for new assurances on Israeli intentions in any resumed round of negotiations on Palestinian autonomy.
CU Israeli Minister of Interior Yosef Burg speaking to newsmen in English outside Prime Ministers' office in Jerusalem. (3 SHOTS)
GV Prime Ministers' office building.
SV Israeli Prime Minister, Menachem Begin, gets into car and leaves.
BURG:"My opinion is very clear and I believe that it is the opinion of all Jews all over the world and all of us here. Jerusalem is the capital, our capital, from eternity to eternity. We decided on this in 1967. I was a member of the Knesset together with Mr. Begin and together with all the people that were there in the Knesset in 1967. I believe that the decision of the Knesset of the last 14 days is nothing new. It is only a reaffirmation and therefore I cannot see why there should be this as a reason for the stopping of the negotiations. I believe that the process of peace is important for everyone. I believe that Egypt and the United States and we, we have signed the documents of understanding and it would be a pity if this understanding could not be worked out and followed up."
REPORTER:"Do you think that there is a serious chance that this will not be worked out?"
BURG:"I will say that reason will prevail and therefore I believe that the Egyptians and we will sit together for further negotiations."
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Background: President Sadat of Egypt has asked for new assurances on Israeli intentions in any resumed round of negotiations on Palestinian autonomy. The main issue has been the status of East Jerusalem. Reports from Cairo said the Egyptian leader wanted to be told that Jerusalem was still a subject for negotiation even though new Israeli legislation has proclaimed the city to be the eternal and indivisible capital of the Jewish state. Following the proclamation, Mr. Sadat suspended further peace talks with Israel, but Israel's Interior Minister, Dr. Yosef Burg, who heads the Israeli negotiating team, believes the talks can go on.
SYNOPSIS: The location of the Israeli Prime Minister's office has become a symbol of the Knesset's plans for East Jerusalem. Mr. Begin plans to re-establish his office there. It is the latest issue to halt the peace talks that have made little recent progress, and were suspended following an Egyptian allegation that Israel has been placing obstacles in the way of peace.