CAIRO, Sept.15, 1956 (UP) President Gamal Abdel Nasser said Egypt would show the world it could operate the canal successfully. He again warned that his country would fight to defend its sovereignty over the canal.
Western pilots, employees of the ousted Suez Canal Co., quit last night. Today, pilots from the Egyptian navy aided convoy operations. The government newspaper also said 41 Russian pilots arrived last night.
Nasser today charged that Britain and France are trying to hamper navigation in the canal. He added that "I can not tell what America's stand is."
"The U.S. president has said he wants peace," Nasser told a graduating class of air cadets. "Then the secretary of state (Dulles) suggests plans that would eventually lead to war."
The 31-ship convoy left Suez northbound and was led by French and British tankers. Another 13-ship convoy moved out of Port Said, southbound.
In Washington, it was announced Dulles will leave Monday for London to participate in an 18-nation conference on the plans for the users association.
The 18 nations are those which originally backed Dulles plan for internationalizing the vital waterway. Egypt rejected the plan, which would have established an international board to control the canal but assure Egypt of legitimate profits.