(Communicated by the Prime Minister’s Media Adviser)

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert met today (Wednesday), 19 July 2006, with European Union High Representative for Common Foreign and Security Policy Javier Solana and expressed his appreciation for the EU’s position as expressed by the EU member state Foreign Ministers.

Prime Minister Olmert emphasized that Israel will conduct the fighting against Hizbullah as long as necessary in order to bring the abducted soldiers back home, fully implement UN Security Council Resolution #1559 and implement the principles specified the G-8 declaration: The unconditional return of the abducted soldiers, the disarming of Hizbullah and a halt to the rocket threat against Israel, the deployment of the Lebanese Army along the border with Israel and the application of the Lebanese Government’s sovereignty over the entire area of the country.

Prime Minister Olmert stressed that the actions in the Gaza Strip and Lebanon were provoked by the terrorist organizations with the encouragement of Syria and Iran who wished to thereby divert world attention.

Prime Minister Olmert said that Israel would not return to the status quo that prevailed before recent events in which the security of Israeli citizens was threatened.

Prime Minister Olmert emphasized that Israel would continue to pursue the terrorists everywhere and noted that this action has broad public support in Israel.

EU Envoy Solana expressed both his solidarity with Israel’s citizens and the suffering that they are enduring as a result of the Hizbullah assault and his support for the Prime Minister at this difficult time.