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Main Points of ‘geneva Accord’

December 3, 2003
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The following are some of the main points of the “Geneva accord,” the unofficial Israeli-Palestinian peace proposal launched Monday:

A State of Palestine would be created roughly along Israel’s pre-1967 borders. The two countries would recognize each other and Palestine would end Palestinian violence and incitement against Israel.

Israel would retain control over some Jewish settlements in the West Bank in exchange for transferring to Palestine an equivalent amount of Israeli territory. A corridor linking the West Bank and Gaza Strip would be under Israeli sovereignty but Palestinian administration.

Jerusalem would be split into two capitals. Israel would keep Jewish neighborhoods in eastern Jerusalem, while Arab and other non-Jewish neighborhoods of the city would come under Palestinian rule.

Palestine would have sovereignty over the Al-Aksa Mosque and the Temple Mount, Judaism’s holiest site. Jews could visit the Temple Mount but not pray there. Israel would have sovereignty over the Western Wall.

The two states would guarantee access to religious sites, such as the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron and Rachel’s Tomb near Bethlehem.

The accord is ambiguous about the Palestinian demand for a “right of return” for refugees who fled their homes during Israel’s War of Independence in 1948 and their millions of descendants. Israeli negotiators say the agreement renounces the “right of return,” but the text cites U.N. General Assembly Resolution 194 and a Saudi Arabian peace proposal, which Palestinians contend include the “right of return.” The accord says Israel should accept a quantity of Palestinian refugees to be determined by an international commission but will have a veto over the process.

Palestine would be nonmilitarized, but a security force would exist to maintain border control and perform law-and-order functions.

Most Palestinian prisoners held by Israel would be released.

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