Draft U.S. Peace Plan (1998)


The Clinton Administration spent the first half of 1998 pressuring Israel to accept its suggestions for a further withdrawal from the West Bank. For several weeks, press reports referred to details of the proposal, particularly calls on Israel to withdraw from 13.1 percent of the territories. This is the first published version of the U.S. proposals, which includes suggestions for a slightly larger withdrawal than had been leaked to the press earlier. Israeli government officials confirmed the basic accuracy of the document, but said this was an early draft and several details had been changed.

Over a period of 12 weeks, divided into three stages, Palestinian and Israeli obligations and commitments will be implemented in accordance with a phased paralled approach, as follows:

I. First Stage: Week One to the end of Week Five:

A. Immediately

1. Permanent status negotiations will be immediately resumed.

2. The trilateral security committee (American-Palestinian-Israeli) will be reactivated to deal with all security matters. In the first meetings, there will be a report by Palestinian Authority security officials on the results of interrogations of those in custody. It will convene every two weeks and will report directly to Chairman Yasser Arafat and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. B. Within the first two weeks

3. In the first two weeks, the Israeli side will deploy from 2 percent C (all Israeli-held territory) to B (territory under Israeli security control but Palestinian civil control), and 7.1 percent B to A (full Palestinian control).

4. Palestinian-Israeli security coordination and cooperation will be reviewed at all levels and without conditions.

5. The Executive Committee of the PLO will endorse Arafat's letter to President Clinton concerning the Palestinian Charter.

6. Arafat will issue an executive decree against incitement.

7. An Israeli-Palestinian committee will be established to deal with incitement. The Americans may also participate. The committee will be composed of an elected legislator from each side, and a security man, a lawyer and a journalist from each side.

8. An American-Palestinian security committee will be established to deal with specific security matters, such as to follow the files of individuals who have committed terrorist activities. Have they been arrested? Did they appear in courts? Were they sentenced? Are they still in jails? The apprehension of individuals suspected of acts of violence and terror -- in accordance with the list -- will be developed jointly for investigation and prosecution.

9. The trilateral security committee will introduce monitoring and implementation mechanisms to fight terror at the regional level. In the first meetings, the Palestinian Authority will report on the steps taken to outlaw violent and militant groups.

II. Second Stage: Week 6 to the end of Week 11

1. The Israeli side will redeploy from 5 percent C to B.

2. Arafat will ratify the law on arms possession, which will be followed by the establishment of a systematic program for collection and disposal of illegal weapons.

3. The trilateral security committee will deal with the issue of arms smuggling.

4. The Palestinian side will hand the Israeli side a list of the names of the Palestinian police force, in conformity with the Interim Agreement.

5. The steering committee will deal with the issue of transfer of suspects. After receiving all relevant materials, the PA will respond within four weeks, in accordance with the Interim Agreement.

III. Third Stage: Week 12

1. The Israeli side will redeploy from the 5 percent C to B, 1 percent C to A, and 7.1 percent B to A.

IV. Other elements

1. A joint Palestinian-Israeli committee will be established for the third phase of the further redeployments. It will report to the American side once a week. The American side will stand by the Warren Christopher letter of January 17, 1997.

2. The outstanding Interim issues -- release of prisoners, Gaza airport, industrial zone, will be implemented within 12 weeks. Serious efforts will be made to implement the other issues. Apart from the U.S. initiative, there will also be a U.S.-Israeli understanding and a U.S.-Palestinian understanding on unilateral steps.

A. The Palestinians undertake:

—Not to take unilateral steps that will change the status of the West Bank and Gaza Strip until May 4, 1999.

—The PLO will not question Israel's credentials at the UN.

—The Palestinian Authority will not grant building licenses in Area C outside the framework of the joint committee.

B. The Israeli side undertakes:

—Not to build new settlements.

—No significant expansion of existing settlements. Expansion is not to take place beyond the immediate contigious areas.

—No confiscation of land. If there will be land confiscation for bypass roads, the Israelis will provide the specific plan and the specific rationale for any road.

—Israel will refrain from demolitions of homes (1,800 homes are currently slated for demolition). Israel will not demolish homes built without permits.


Source: Ha'aretz (June 4, 1998).