Friday, August 12, 2005

Israel could give up more W.Bank settlements

(Reuters) - Prime Minister Ariel Sharon raised the prospect on Friday that Israel could eventually uproot more settlements on occupied land after it evacuates its enclaves in Gaza and a pocket of the West Bank in coming weeks.

Sharon, in an interview with the newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth, reiterated that his "disengagement plan" was meant to strengthen Israel's hold on West Bank settlement blocs, which it intends to keep under any future peace deal with Palestinians.

However, asked about the fate of some of the more isolated West Bank settlements, Sharon said: "Not everything will remain. That issue will be raised during the final stage of negotiations with the Palestinians."

With five days to go before the start of Israel's eviction of Gaza settlers, Sharon's comments hinted at a softening of his stance against further withdrawals.
In the face of fierce rightist opposition to his pullout plan, Sharon has recently insisted he has no intention of giving up any more settlements beyond the 21 in Gaza and four of 120 in the West Bank scheduled for evacuation.

But a Sharon confidant said: "He has never ruled out that Israel would eventually have to give up some things -- but in the distant future when there is full peace and security."


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home