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State trickery

> Last update - 19:45 13/05/2002
>U.S. stands firm on Palestinian state, despite Likud vote
>By Ha'aretz Service and agencies
> Sharon and Netanyahu at the Likud Central Committee conference Sunday.
>(Photo: AP)
>The United States said Monday that it would continue to
>support a two-state solution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict, despite
>the Likud Central Committee's decision overnight ruling out the
>possibility of a future Palestinian state "west of the Jordan River."
>"The president continues to believe that the best route to peace is
>through the creation of the state of Palestine and side by side security
>with Israel," White House spokesman Ari Fleischer said in response to the
>Likud decision.
>So ingrained had administration acceptance of Palestinian statehood become
>that Bush's assistant for national security, Condoleezza Rice, and
>Undersecretary of State Marc Grossman made almost matter-of-fact
>references to "Palestine" in speeches last week to the American Jewish
>Fleischer affirmed Bush's continuing support for a Palestinian state in a
>meeting with reporters at the White House even while insisting he did not
>"comment in [other states'] domestic politics."
>"Every nation has its share of internal domestic politics," Fleischer said.
>Senior Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat slammed the vote, calling it "a
>real slap in the face" for Bush.
>"[It] just shows that the war being waged by Israel against the
>Palestinians is not a war against what they call terror, said Erekat.
>"It's really their war to maintain the occupation of the West Bank and Gaza."
>Sharon: 'party trickery' will not decide policy
>Earlier Monday, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon responded fiercely to the
>decision, telling a meeting of the Likud's Knesset faction that he would
>stand by his policies, and not allow "party trickery" to influence him.
>"I was elected to be the prime minister, by a majority of two-thirds. I
>will not let party trickery dictate policy. I am responsible for what
>happens, and I must create policy according to decisions I made," the
>prime minister said.
>European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana said Monday he regretted
>the Likud decision.
>"It is very sad when the internal politics of a political party can
>interfere in the search for peace," Solana said as he arrived for a
>monthly meeting of EU foreign ministers set to be dominated by the Middle
>East crisis.
>"We are all engaged in trying to find peace...And everybody has recognised
>that the only way to peace is through a state (for the Palestinians). It
>is a pity that internal politics can make this process more difficult."
>Syrian Foreign Minister, Farouk al-Sharaa has said Monday that Sharon's
>stinging defeat by his own political party will cause a political impasse
>in Israel and further cripples any hope of Sharon coming up with a viable
>peace initiative.
>Speaking to reporters in Beirut, the foreign minister said the Likud party
>vote against accepting eventual creation of a Palestinian state was
>Israel's "reply to any true Arab desire for peace."
>"I think that Israeli intentions on the highest level are not peaceful
>ones," he said.
>"There is going to be a kind of an impasse in Israeli politics for the
>coming few months because of the Likud party (vote) yesterday and Sharon's
>terrible defeat," Sharaa said following a meeting with Lebanese President
>Emile Lahoud.
>"This will reflect on the entire Israeli political front in the coming
>months. Sharon will remain in power but will not be able to come up with
>any peace initiatives," he added.
>Foreign Minister Shimon Peres said Monday that the Likud Central
>Committee's decision was "tragic, tragic to the state of Israel."
>The vote was a painful political - and perhaps diplomatic - setback to
>Prime Minister Ariel Sharon Sunday night at the hands of his rival, former
>prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
>"What is all this escaping from the need to make a decision, candidly and
>genuinely?" Peres told Army Radio. "I understand that this is a battle for
>power, but I am convinced that if Netanyahu is elected, he will be as he
>was before previous elections, he was in favor of Oslo and he shook
>Arafat's hand."
>Asked if he believed Netanyahu were elected prime minister, he would agree
>to establishment of a Palestinian state, Peres replied, "I assume so."
>Peres dismissed as "words, words, words devoid of meaning" Netanyahu's
>vision of self-rule rather than Palestinian independence. "If they're
>under our sovereignty, we control their economy, their villages, their
>lives, their houses, and in any case they'll react as they are reacting.
>We must not delude ourselves. All in all, verbal therapy is an
>extraordinary thing, but we're too old for this."
>The foreign minister said the coalition government's policy guidelines
>effectively gave the nod to a Palestinian state, by supporting an
>agreement with the Palestinians according to UN resolutions 242 and 338,
>which speak of return of territories captured in the 1967 Middle East war.
>"How else are we going to return this to them? By fax?"

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Bush goal palestinian state by 2009 { November 13 2004 }
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Exec division { April 7 2002 }
Kidnappings in gaza challenges palestinian authority { July 17 2004 }
Knesset approves gaza pullout plan
Libya wants single israeli palestinian state { May 22 2004 }
Likud no state { May 13 2002 }
No palestine vote { May 12 2002 }
Sharon says bush plan will end palestinian dreams { April 17 2004 }
State trickery
Thousands of peace activists support gaza pullout { October 26 2004 }
US insists israel work arafat { May 6 2002 }

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