Palestinians Not Fulfilling Wye Commitments

(Communicated by the Foreign Ministry Spokesman)
2 February 1999

The Foreign Ministry Spokesman, referring to senior Israeli Government sources, has expressed satisfaction with the comments made by the spokesman of the U.S. State Department during his daily briefing yesterday (Monday), 1.2.99, in which he offered support for Israel’s assertion that the Palestinians are not meeting the commitments which they undertook in signing the Wye River Memorandum.

Of particular significance, from Israel’s perspective, is the State Department position opposing a unilateral declaration of Palestinian statehood, and the serious implications which could result from such an action.

According to the Foreign Ministry Spokesman, "only the precise fulfillment of all Wye stipulations by the Palestinians will enable the process to move forward."

The following are selected quotes from the State Department briefing:

"The first phase was implemented successfully. During the second phase, the Palestinians have completed some of their obligations, but not all.

We do not believe it is a good idea at all for the Palestinians to declare statehood or make any other statements that affect a position that we want to see negotiated in the permanent status talks.

We have been consulting, talking to, discussing the dangers of so doing to the Palestinians for some time, and we will continue to do so. Because we think that it would be a mistake to try to predetermine the outcome of one of the permanent status issues that is obviously the most sensitive. And we are going to make that point known to the Palestinian leadership in its discussions here as we have been for some time. That’s a regular part of our discussions."