(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon spoke today (Thursday), 25 August 2005, with Norwegian Prime Minister Kjell Magne Bondevik who phoned in order to congratulate him and the State of Israel on the implementation of the Disengagement Plan. Norwegian Prime Minister Bondevik hailed the disengagement as an historic step on the road to peace and added that since Prime Minister Sharon is the only person who can bring peace, the whole world supports him. The Norwegian Prime Minister expressed his deep appreciation for the way in which the security forces evacuated the settlers, which has brought much honor to the State of Israel. He said that he is convinced that the Disengagement Plan will lead Israel to better international and domestic situations.

Prime Minister Sharon said that the burden of proof is now on the Palestinians and added that they must fight terrorism and dismantle its infrastructures in order to make possible progress on the Roadmap.