Barak Would Accept Palestinian State if it Resulted From Negotiations
Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak would accept an independent Palestinian state if it were established through negotiations, according to the text of a letter he has sent to world leaders.
"We are at a crucial crossroads, facing two distinct possibilities," Barak said in the letter, which he sent on Tuesday and which was released by his office a day later.
"We could resume negotiations, which -- based on the ideas discussed at Camp David -- will lead to the creation of a viable Palestinian state," Barak wrote.
"Or we can succumb to the route of violence and unilateral Palestinian action, which is liable to create a source of continuous instability in the region, a great potential for threatening moderate neighboring countries and endanger regional stability and global interests," he added.
The central committee of Arafat's Palestine Liberation Organization is due to meet before November 15 to discuss the creation of a Palestinian state, even in the absence of a peace deal with Israel.
A senior PLO official, in statements published Tuesday, said November 15 was the "final" date for declaring a Palestinian state.
"The Palestine National Council will declare a Palestinian state during its meeting in Gaza on November 15," Taysser Qub'a, the deputy speaker of the Palestine National Council, told the Jordanian economic daily Al-Aswaq.
Barak called a "time out" in the seven-year peace process with the Palestinians last month because of the wave of Israeli-Palestinian violence that has claimed the lives of 190 people in six weeks -- JERUSALEM (AFP)
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