Jerusalem, 24 December 2000

PM Barak: Washington talks designed to lead to reduction in violence and implementation of Sharm understandings, and consider possibility of resumption of negotiations
(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)

Prime Minister Ehud Barak, at the weekly Cabinet meeting today (Sunday), December 24, 2000, commented on the Washington talks and said that the contacts are designed to lead to a reduction in the violence and the implementation of the Sharm understandings, and are evaluating the possibility of resuming the negotiations.

Prime Minister Barak said: "The two sides are holding difficult and pointed discussions on the most painful issues. We should be aware that should an agreement not be achieved and we slide – Heaven forbid – towards a deterioration, cracks will appear in the other peace agreements and Israels isolation against this background of violence, will increase."

Prime Minister Barak referred to the issue of suspending progress toward a solution for 5-10 years and said that there is a risk that we would then face "an entirely new Middle East" vis-a-vis non-conventional weapons, fundamentalism and a surge in organized terrorism.

Prime Minister Barak declared that political realities in Israel will not change the government’s supreme obligation. "We will never concede on our vital interests. At the same time, we must examine every idea worthy of consideration, even if it is painful."  

 PM Barak- Washington talks designed to lead to reduction in violence and implementation of Sharm understandings- and consider possibility of resumption of negotiations-24-Dec-2000
 PM Barak- Washington talks designed to lead to reduction in violence and implementation of Sharm understandings- and consider possibility of resumption of negotiations-24-Dec-2000
Outbreak of Violence in Jerusalem and the Territories – Sept/Oct 2000