The United States has written and proposed a draft peace treaty between Egypt and Israel and has placed it before negotiators for those countries at the Blair House talks, an official spokesman said yesterday.
State Department official George Sherman, the authorized spokesman for all three delegations, said the U.S.-drafted treaty has been accepted by both the Mideast parties as "the vehicle for negotiations."
According to Sherman, Secretary of State Cyrus R. Vance and other members of the U.S. delegation are going through the American draft line by line in separate meetings with the Egyptian and Israeli teams to isolate and clarify any differences of view.
Informed sources said the U.S. negotiators were pleasantly surprised at the ease with which the Egyptians and Israelis accepted the American-proposed treaty as the basic for negotiations when it was presented in Thursday's sessions. Each of the Middle East teams was believed to have brought draft treaties to Washington.
The U.S. proposal is reported to include detailed annexes and maps, including the lines of phased Israeli withdrawal and demilitarized, limited-armament and U.N. zones in the Sinai.
The Camp David agreements signed by Egyptian President Anwar Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin specify the general areas of such lines and zones, but the exact demarcation was left to the peace treaty negotiations.
The U.S. draft treaty "is aimed at fleshing out the framework that was reached at Camp David," said Sherman in a briefing for reporters. He would not disclose details of the document.
On a problem of great sensitivity, Sherman said Vance is discussing with the Egyptian and Israeli delegations the separate Camp David "framework" agreement covering the future status of the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
The relationship, or linkage, between the bilateral Egypt-Israel treaty over the Sinai and the more complex West Bank-Gaza strip arrangement is a crucial and controversial issue.
Egypt has been attempting to maximize the linkage between the two "framework" agreements on the two fronts, to demonstrate that it is not betraying the Palestinian or pan-Arab cause in pursuit of a separate peace with Israel.
The Israelis, on the other hand, have sought to minimize linkage between the "framework" agreements to retain greater freedom of action and guard against new pressures for concessions on the West Bank.
President Carter, in recent public statements, has taken a position between the two camps, saying that the two agreements are not linked legally but are linked in the minds of the Camp David participants.
He has also said the progress in the Blair House talks "should be complemented" by progress on the West Bank. However, Carter has not taken a public view that progress on the West Bank is a condition of an Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty.
The Soviet Union, which was excluded from the Camp David process, has attacked the Egyptian-Israeli arrangements, and has called for a new Geneva conference, of which it would be cochairman with the United States.
A Pravda commentary published yesterday and distributed here by the Soviet embassy charged that the Egyptian-Israeli negotiations "clearly revealed Washington's desire to consolidate its positions in the Middle East" by tying Egypt and Israel "more closely to its political chariot."
The commentary also spoke of additional U.S. military influence, citing the two air bases to be built by the United States for Israel in the Negev to replace those being given up in the Sinai.
The Middle East is "in immediate proximity" to Soviet frontiers and those of its Warsaw Pact allies, the commentary said. Without specifying any action under consideration, Pravda said the Soviet Union has "many friends" in the Middle East "and is not indifferent to events talking place there."