Sharon to Abbas: "We Have No Quarrel with You"

(Prime Minister's Office) - From Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's speech Tuesday before meeting with Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas: I warmly welcome Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas, and his Cabinet ministers who are with us here. I have no doubt that the message projected from here today to the people of Israel, the Palestinian people, and the entire world, is one of hope and optimism. Prime Minister Abbas, Israel is a peace-seeking nation. Israel's hand has always been extended in peace to all Arab states and to our Palestinian neighbors. The yearning for peace by Jews in the land of Israel and the entire world finds expression in every aspect of our lives. Generations of Jews were taught to seek, aspire to, and pursue peace. Therefore, even if the price is painful, even if we are required to make painful compromises, I will be willing to make them for the sake of true peace - a peace for generations, the peace that we all yearn for. However, we must never forget that there are still many who would like to see the process - any process - collapse. There are still those: terrorists, their abettors, dispatchers, those who finance them, and those who encourage them, through virulent incitement, the sole purpose of which is the murder of innocent people. There will be no compromise with terror. And Israel, together with the nations of the Free World, will continue fighting terrorism until it is completely defeated. There can be no peace with terrorism. In my address to the Knesset on April 8, 2003, I called on the Palestinians as follows: "On behalf of the people of Israel, I tell you: we have no quarrel with you. We have no desire to control you or to dictate your fate. We want to live side by side with you in peace, as good neighbors, helping and respecting each other." We are happy to welcome you here in peace. I am convinced that together we will achieve our mutual goal: peace and security for both peoples.

2003-07-02 00:00:00

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