Israel ready to soften line on checkpoints: Rabin stresses security imperative but speaks of co-ordination with Palestinians
Wednesday 22 December 1993
Speaking before closed Israeli-PLO talks in Paris, he told reporters: 'We'll negotiate co-ordination and even Palestinian presence as long as we will be sure that we can control, for the sake of security, everyone that crosses.'
It was unclear if Mr Rabin's position would break the impasse in implementing Israel's peace deal with the PLO. He said Israel would still insist on control at the borders between Palestinian self-rule areas and neighbouring Arab states. In Tunis, a PLO official said Palestinians would also demand control.
'The Palestinian control is indispensable on passages leading to the Gaza Strip and Jericho area from which the Israelis withdraw,' said Suleiman Najab, a PLO executive committee member.
Mr Rabin said Israel wanted to ensure its own security and that there would be no mass movement of Palestinians into the occupied territories. Under the peace deal, Israel was due to begin withdrawing troops from the Gaza Strip and the West Bank town of Jericho last week. The withdrawal was postponed in part because of the struggle for control of the crossings from Egypt and Jordan.
Israelis and Palestinians said earlier that they were optimistic about removing the obstacles. The talks in Paris followed closed-door negotiations in Norway earlier this week.
Asked if the Paris talks might end in agreement, Ziad Abu Zayyad, a leading Palestinian in the occupied territories, told Israel Radio: 'I believe so. It's possible.' He said he favoured any co-ordinated agreement that would ensure Israeli security without denying Palestinians the right to self-rule leading to statehood.
The Foreign Minister, Shimon Peres, who heads Israel's team at the talks with the PLO, sounded equally hopeful on Monday when he reported to Israeli television on the previous round in Oslo. 'The fact we decided to meet again shortly and together to iron out the crimps or repair the cracks shows both sides believe we can bridge the differences,' he said.
Mr Rabin's spokesman, Gad Ben- Ari, said the Israeli leader would meet the PLO chairman, Yasser Arafat, once there was progress. He declined to speculate whether they would meet late this week as envisaged when the two leaders held talks in Cairo last week.
The Israeli Labour Party's secretary-general, Nissim Zvili, said in an interview with a French newspaper that Israel was ready to agree to joint patrols with Palestinians on the borders with Egypt and Jordan. But the bridges and the border would remain under Israeli control 'as it was written very clearly in the Oslo accords', he was quoted as telling the Liberation newspaper.
'The sooner Arafat understands that, the better it will be for everyone,' Mr Zvili said.
- 1 Isis propaganda video shows 25 Syrian soldiers executed by teenage militants in Palmyra
- 2 Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
- 3 The map showing the most dangerous tourist destinations in Europe, according to the Foreign Office
- 4 Right to die: Belgian doctors rule depressed 24-year-old woman has right to end her life
- 5 The biggest first date turnoff has been revealed
Isis propaganda video shows 25 Syrian soldiers executed by teenage militants in Palmyra
Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Van driver who comforted Clark Carlisle and called 999 after suicide attempt dies age 24
Greece debt crisis explainer: A history of just how the country landed itself in such a mess
Greece debt crisis referendum: Greeks want to vote No to austerity – but Yes to Europe
Nathan Collier: Montana man inspired by same-sex marriage ruling requests right to wed two wives
More Britons believe that multiculturalism makes the country worse - not better, says poll
Greece crisis: IMF was pushed around by Angela Merkel and Nicholas Sarkozy – and now it is being humiliated
'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State' – David Cameron unleashes frustration at broadcaster
Forget little green men – aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert
Girl, 7, stares down hate preacher at Ohio festival with pro-LGBT rainbow flag gesture
£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This family owned, independent ...
£17000 - £21000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...
£17000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...
£17000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: If you are fluent in Japanese a...