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Powell: U.S. doesn't doubt Sharon's commitment to road map
: Powell: U.S. doesn't doubt Sharon's commitment to road mapBy
: Ari Shavit Aluf Benn Yair Ettinger Published in
: Ha'aretzDate of issue
7 October 2004Topic(s) addressed
: People/entities mentioned in this item:
Timeline event(s) mentioned in this item: Abstract
United States Secretary of State Colin Powell told reporters while visiting Grenada on Wednesday that the U.S. does not doubt Prime Minister Ariel Sharon' Sharon's commitment to the road map.
The U.S. on Wednesday evening asked Israel to clarify statements made by Sharon's senior advisor, Dov Weisglass, in an interview with Haaretz, according to which the disengagement plan means a "freezing of the peace process," Israel Radio reported.
"The significance of the disengagement plan is the freezing of the peace process," Weisglass, one of the initiators of the disengagement plan, said in an interview for the Haaretz Friday Magazine.
"And when you freeze that process," Weisglass added, "you prevent the establishment of a Palestinian state, and you prevent a discussion on the refugees, the borders and Jerusalem.
"Effectively, this whole package called the Palestinian state, with all that it entails, has been removed indefinitely from our agenda. And all this with authority and permission. All with a presidential blessing and the ratification of both houses of Congress."
"The disengagement is actually formaldehyde," he said. "It supplies the amount of formaldehyde that is necessary so there will not be a political process with the Palestinians." (The full interview will appear on Friday.)
State Department Spokesman Adam Ereli, speaking in Washington, said the U.S. told Israel that Weisglass' comments do not match Israel's official government position as presented to the U.S.
But Ereli also said Israel informed the U.S. administration that Sharon remains committed to the road map peace plan and to President George W. Bush's vision of a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Following the publication of parts of the Weisglass interview in Haaretz, Sharon's bureau released a statement saying he supports the road map and sees it as the only plan for allowing a final-status agreement.
A senior State Department official in Washington also said the administration was very satisfied with clarifications of Weisglass' comments made by the Prime Minister's bureau.