FM Peres: Bush speech to UN emphasizes imminent danger of Iraqi regime

(Communicated by the Foreign Minister’s Bureau)
12 September 2002

In a preliminary response to U.S. President George W. Bush’s speech today to the UN General Assembly, Foreign Minster Shimon Peres, head of Israel’s delegation to the UNGA, said that the President was decisive, unambiguous and powerful, and that he clearly stated the necessity of continuing the world campaign against terrorism.

Peres added that the President justly emphasized the grave dangers to world peace and to Middle East peace and stability posed by Saddam Hussein’s regime, which makes continuous efforts to arm itself with nuclear weapons. The President, Peres said, also emphasized the duty to take the necessary measures needed to neutralize this danger.

Referring to Israel’s predicament in the case of Iraq, Mr. Peres stated that, in the speech, Bush mentioned that Israel had already been the victim of Iraqi aggression – an aggression that came without reason.

In addition, Peres said that he endorsed the President’s statement regarding the political horizon of two states for two nations, one Israeli and one Palestinian.