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EBAN, ABBA (1915-2002).

Abba EbanIsraeli statesman, Eban was born in Capetown, South Africa, and grew up in a Zionist home in England. He studied Hebrew, Arabic, and Persian at Cambridge University. Having distinguished himself in these subjects, he remained to teach them. During World War II he enlisted in the British Army, became an officer, and was assigned to Cairo headquarters. Part of Eban’s duties included flights to Palestine in order to stimulate the Jewish war effort there.

Eban settled in Jerusalem where his special background was utilized by its Jewish “shadow government” during the closing days of the British Mandate. In 1947, he was appointed liaison officer with the United Nations Special Commission on Palestine. After the proclamation of the State of Israel in 1948, Eban pleaded successfully for the admission of Israel to the United Nations. One of the most eloquent spokespersons on the international scene, he served with distinction as head of the Israeli delegation to the United Nations. In 1950, he became Israel’s ambassador to the U. S. In 1953, he was deputy chairman of the U.N. assembly. From 1958 until 1966 he was president of the Weizmann Institute of Science. In 1960, he was appointed Minister of Education and Culture; in 1963, Deputy Prime Minister; and in 1966, Foreign Minister of the State of Israel, a post he held until the fall of Golda Meir‘s government in 1974.

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