President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt arrived here Monday, beginning a six-nation tour to promote support for a proposed international conference on Middle East peace. He promptly won strong support from West German government leaders.
Mubarak spent four hours talking with Chancellor Helmut Kohl and President Richard von Weizsaecker. Afterward, Kohl declared, "I again assured him of my support for such a peace conference, and I will put it on the agenda of the European Communities summit."
Last week, Mubarak proposed a plan aimed at tackling the question of Palestinian autonomy and reducing tension in the Middle East.
Under the plan, Palestinians would halt for at least six months their present so-called uprising in the Israeli-occupied West Bank of the Jordan River and the Gaza Strip. For its part, Israel would impose a moratorium on new settlements in the occupied territories and agree to take part in an international conference--proposals that Jerusalem has always strongly resisted to date.
Leaders of the European Communities are scheduled to meet Feb. 11 and 12 in Brussels. The rotating chairmanship is presently occupied by West Germany.
"In the EC," Kohl said, "we want in our coming talks to set in motion a process to support this (international conference) initiative."
Accordingly, he said, the Middle East will be on the agenda.
'The Only Option'
Mubarak said that an international conference on the Middle East is "the only option for a solution."
Later Monday, he traveled to London to meet with British officials. Today, he moves on to Washington, where he will see President Reagan for the first time since 1985 and seek additional support for a Middle East conference.
Israeli leaders are divided on the Mubarak proposal. Foreign Minister Shimon Peres supports the idea in principle, but Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir wishes to limit any peace conference to representatives of Israel and Jordan plus a delegation of Palestinians, with the Palestine Liberation Organization being excluded.
Genscher Makes the Rounds
West German Foreign Minister Hans-Dietrich Genscher talked with officials in Israel over the weekend and is now in Brussels for discussions with his colleagues in the European Communities.
He called on Israel to agree to an international peace conference and urged the United States and the Soviet Union to become engaged in the search for a solution to the conflict in the Middle East.