Israeli Prime Minister Menahem Begin has agreed to Romanian President Nicolae Ceaucesco's offer to extend his good offices to further a Middle East peace settlement, Israel Radio reported tonight.
Begin, on a five-day official visit to Romania, said that despite differences of opinion between Romania and Israel on various Middle East issues, Ceaucescu is a man of good will with ties to Israel as well as to the Arab countries.
Begin said, however, that during his meeting with Ceaucescu this morning their positions on the status of the Palestine Liberation Organization and Israeli settlements in occupied Arab lands remained for apart.
Israeli newspapers reported today that Begin clashed verbally with Romanian Premier Manea Manescu at a banquet in Bucherest last night.
They said Begin departed from his prepared text to challege some of his host's comments.
According to the Jerusalem Post, Begin delivered a lengthy and impassioned condemnation of the PLO and justification of Israel's desire for border changes.
Reports here noted that Manescu did not join the polite applause given Begin after his speech.
Meanwhile, government sources in Tel Aviv said Israel has clandestinely set up a new paramilitary settlement on the occupied West Bank, setting the stage for the possible creation of a civilian colony in the area.
Government sources said Israeli soldiers belonging to the Nahal soldier farmer unit moved into the Reichan outpost, northwest of Jenin, a major Arab town, about two weeks ago.
At about the same time, the Israeli government gave the go-ahead for three civilian settlements to be set up on the West Bank, which was captured from Jordon in the 1957 war.