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Digital Archive International History Declassified

January 18, 1973

MESSAGE FROM JOSIP TITO TO LEONID BREZHNEV

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    Message of the President of the Republic Josip Broz Tito to the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union Leonid Illyic Brezhnev and answer of the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union to the President of the League of Communists of Yugoslavia
    "Message from Josip Tito to Leonid Brezhnev," January 18, 1973, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Tito Presidential Archives, KPR I – 1/1014. Translated by Lana Obradovic. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/113624
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Brioni, January 18th 1973.

Dear Comrade Brezhnev,

During the recent visit of the President of the Arab Republic of Egypt Anwar Al Sadat, we held the thorough talks regarding the current international situation and the bilateral cooperation.

Special attention was given to the worrying situation in the Middle East which is becoming more difficult due to the Israeli refusal to fulfill its obligations under the Security Council Resolution and that of the UN General Assembly. The repeated aggressive actions of Israel against Syria, Lebanon and against the Arab peoples of Palestine represent a threat not only to the independence of the peoples of the Middle East, but also to the security of the states in the Mediterranean and the stability of peace in the world. The bombing of Syria and Lebanon are just another manifestation of the pressure inflicted by the most brutal military power for the sake of imposing a dictate to sovereign states. President Sadat has informed me of the serious consequences and problems that have derived from that in the Arab states of the Middle East. If the current situation continues, the development of the events in the Middle East could lead to a further dangerous escalation and conflict, whose negative consequences, in my view, would adversely affect stability in the Mediterranean, as well as the process of negotiation and easing of the tension in Europe and in some other parts of the world.

President Sadat has especially emphasized the need for the crisis in the Middle East to move from the current state of immobility and to strengthen the efforts for the finding of the just and permanent solution of the problems in the Middle East which implies the attainment of legitimate rights by the Arab people of Palestine. In seeking such a solution, President Sadat would like to rely on the widest support of the Arab people, convinced that their interests are also at stake. At the same time, they are determined to step up appropriate efforts to reach a peaceful political solution to the crisis in the Middle East. Within that context, President Sadat has pointed out that in searching

Comrade
Leonid Illyic Brezhnev
General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union
Moscow

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for such a solution, the Arab Republic of Egypt cannot cross a certain line, and it is determined to, regardless of the internal difficulties to reject all that is contrary to the respect of its sovereignty and vital interests of the Arab Republic of Egypt and other Arab states.

By supporting such views of President Sadat, I have confirmed Yugoslavia's readiness to, according to its abilities, continue to contribute to the efforts of finding a political solution to the crisis in the Middle East. At the same time I think that we cannot deny the Arab people the right to liberate their occupied territories with other means if they think that they cannot achieve that politically.

By assessing that the crisis in the Middle East has wider adverse implications for international relations and by expressing its solidarity with the victims of the Israeli aggression, the non-aligned states have always resolutely supported the demands of the Arab states directed at the speedy achievement of a just and reliable peace in the Middle East. They have confirmed that at many of its meetings as well as at the United Nations. Their resolution to act in that direction has especially been expressed at the Ministerial meeting of the non-aligned states in Georgetown and the last meeting of the United Nations General Assembly. I am convinced that the non-aligned states are ready and that they can take new actions of support to the legitimate demands of the Arab people and even more determined demands in the world that Israel be coerced to without delay start taking the road of finding a peaceful resolution based on the adopted Resolutions of the United Nations. With that in mind, I have sent a message to the President of Zambia, Mr. Kenneth Kaunda, who hosted the last conference of the non-aligned states and is coordinating their activities right now.

It is encouraging that other states, even the European ones, are showing their increased interests in finding the final solution of the Middle Eastern crisis. The Egyptian leadership is seriously counting on that factor and is seeking to increase that interest.

President Sadat and his associates are attributing a great deal of significance to the role the USSR plays in the development of the events in the Middle East. They made it clear to us that they highly respect the help which the USSR has provided from 1967 until today, and that they still count on it as an important component of their political and military strategy. President Sadat and his associates especially highlighted their permanent interest in developing good relations and cooperating with the USSR, as well as its significance for the overall international position of the Arab Republic of Egypt and for the finding of a solution to the crisis in the Middle East.

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Dear comrade Brezhnev, my talks with President Sadat confirm that the continued support of the USSR contributes to the strengthening of the belief of the government of the Arab Republic of Egypt in possibility and reality to achieve a just political solution of the Middle Eastern crisis based on Security Council Resolution 242 of November 1967.

During the talks with President Sadat, I have also become convinced that in the current moment the support of friendly states to the Arab Republic of Egypt and to other states directly affected by the Israeli aggression represents a significant factor that could have an influence on the positive development of the situation and getting closer to a solution of the Middle Eastern crisis in a peaceful way.

I am using this opportunity to send you friendly greetings and best wishes.

Tito

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