(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)

Following are excerpts from Prime Minister Sharon’s remarks today (Thursday), 18 November 2004:

“What will happen tomorrow – how will the Palestinian leadership be tested? I will give one example: We cannot give in on the demand to collect weapons and dismantle the terrorist organizations, but it is clear that this is a more complex process.

However, there are two demands that are under the direct control of the new leadership, and it must be seen to that they are implemented immediately. Any appeal by the new leadership will be seen and tested in light of the implementation or non-implementation of two main issues, which could be carried out easily and immediately.

1. The halt to the venomous propaganda and continuing incitement in the Palestinian media.

2. A change and turnaround in the Palestinian education system, a halt to the incitement against – and demonization of – Israel, Israelis and Jews.

Replacing inflammatory textbooks, banning the holding of lessons, presentations, summer camps, etc., that incite against Israel – the venomous propaganda in the Palestinian media and education system are the root and foundation of the growing phenomenon of suicide terrorism.

Palestinian education and propaganda are more dangerous to Israel than Palestinian weapons.  These two important missions, even before the full implementation of the first stage of the Roadmap, will be an important test of the true direction of the Palestinian leadership.  Upon what are they bent – a future peace or war and terrorism?

I brought this example in order to show that I don’t intend to waste time; I plan to find any way – when the new Palestinian leadership is ready to open contacts – in order to start advancing our relations with the Palestinians

I hope that the future will lead to quiet, security and a diplomatic
settlement.”