Jerusalem, 14 June 2001

PM Sharon to EU Ambassadors: "Israel is committed to peace; Arafat and Authority’s test will be in results on the ground"
(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon met this morning (Thursday), June 14, 2001, at the home of Swedish Ambassador Anders Liden, with ambassadors from European Union member countries and explained government policy vis-a-vis acceptance of the Tenet cease-fire document as a first stage in implementing the Mitchell committee report.

Prime Minister Sharon made it clear that the IDF and the security forces have been directed to take strict care to maintain the cease-fire and implement all of the measures that Israel has promised wherever there is a complete cessation of violence, shooting and terrorism.

However, Prime Minister Sharon emphasized that in light of the continued shooting, mortar fire and other violent acts, orders were given to the IDF and the security forces that wherever shooting and terrorist actions continue, there will be no redeployment of forces. Wherever there is quiet and a complete cease-fire, there we will carry out the implementation of the cease-fire.

Prime Minister Sharon stressed that Yasser Arafat and the Palestinian Authority’s test will be in results on the ground, not declarations.

Prime Minister Sharon reiterated that Israel is committed to peace and that it is ready to make painful compromises on behalf of peace and added that all steps which have been taken up until now – the unilateral cease-fire, adopting the Mitchell committee report and accepting the Tenet cease-fire document – were designed to halt the cycle of violence. But Israel will not conduct negotiations under pressure of violence, terrorism and incitement and will not compromise on the security of the lives of Israeli citizens.

Prime Minister Sharon thanked the EU ambassadors for their hospitality and added that his door will always be open to them.