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PLO central committee: Halt attacks against all Israeli

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PLO central committee: Halt attacks against all Israelis

By Arnon Regular (Ha'aretz)

Nov. 25, 2002

The PLO's Central Committee has called for "the end of all military action, particularly against Israeli citizens."

In a statement formulated at a meeting in Ramallah on Friday, one day after a suicide bus bombing in Jerusalem killed 11 people, the committee released a statement that may be interpreted as intervention in Israel's election campaign.

"While recognizing the level of violence, and murder, and settlements, and occupation against the Palestinian nation, the committee calls on our people and the national Islamic forces [Fatah, Islamic organizations] to be aware of the needs of the current period and not to be dragged into a trap set by the Israeli leadership intended to broaden the war and take advantage of the elections to mislead the Israeli public."

The committee, headed by PA Chairman Yasser Arafat, also called for an immediate dialogue with members of the Israeli peace camp. The panel said hope would be restored for the two nations through a comprehensive peace plan that complements the Taba negotiations, the Bush plan and the Saudi Arabian peace initiative. The committee would present the plan to the Israeli and Palestinian public as a realistic alternative for peace."

Hamas criticized the committee's declaration on Friday. The organization's spokesmen were angry over the declaration's wording, which implied the halting of terror attacks against settlers and soldiers.

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