Cease-fire agreement reached


NEW YORK (JTA) – The following is the cease-fire agreement agreed to Tuesday by Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak and Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat at Sharm el-Sheik, Egypt, according to President Clinton:

1. Both sides have agreed to:

issue public statements unequivocally calling for an end of violence;

take immediate concrete measures to end the current confrontation;

eliminate points of friction;

ensure an end to violence and incitement; and

maintain calm and prevent recurrence of recent events.

2. Both sides will act immediately to return the situation to that which existed prior to the current crisis in areas such as:

restoring law and order;

redeployment of forces;

enhancing security cooperation;

ending the closures Israel imposed on the major Palestinian population centers in the West Bank and Gaza Strip; and

opening the Gaza airport.

3. The United States will facilitate security cooperation between the parties as needed.

4. The United States will develop, with the Israelis and Palestinians, as well as in consultation with the United Nations secretary-general, a committee of fact-finding on the events of the past several weeks and how to prevent their recurrence. The committee’s report will be shared by the U.S. president with the U.N. secretary-general and the parties prior to publication.

5. There must be a pathway back to negotiations and a resumption of efforts to reach a permanent-status agreement based on U.N. Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338 and subsequent understandings. The leaders have agreed that the United States would consult with the parties within the next two weeks about how to move forward.

Clinton went on to say: “We have made important commitments here today against the backdrop of tragedy and crisis. We should have no illusions about the difficulties ahead. If we are going to rebuild confidence and trust, we must all do our part, avoiding recrimination and moving forward. I’m counting on each of us to do everything we possibly can in the critical period ahead.”

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