Peres warms to Saudi plan


Shimon Peres said the Saudi initiative for a comprehensive Israeli-Arab peace
has merits. Israel’s vice premier said Thursday that while in principle he welcomes the
Saudi initiative, which was first broached in 2002 and is being discussed at
this week’s Arab League summit in Riyadh, he discerns a take-it-or-leave-it
approach on the part of its sponsors.

“I would say this: Let’s hold negotiations. You come with your positions, and
we will come with ours,” Peres told Israel Radio. “I don’t think we need to predetermine what we accept or
don’t accept. Each side should come with their own positions and negotiate from

Saudi initiative calls for Israel to withdraw from all territory captured in the
1967 Six-Day War and accept a “just and agreed-upon” solution to the Palestinian
refugee problem in exchange for peace with the Arab world. Israel has voiced
reservations over some of the terms.

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