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The Conclusion of the Camp David Summit

(July 25, 2000)

In the wake of the Camp David Summit, the following points must be stressed:

1. The Middle East Peace Summit at Camp David ended today, July 25, without an agreement being reached.

2. Israel came to Camp David with the intention of reaching a Framework Agreement on the Israeli-Palestinian Permanent Status (FAPS), in order to bring about an end to the conflict and to secure peace for future generations. To reach such an agreement, Israel is prepared to make painful compromises, yet is unwilling to pay any price demanded of it.

3. Israel's quest for a negotiated peace will continue. Israel welcomes the upcoming visit of a senior U.S. envoy meant to promote a continuation of the negotiating process.

4. The positions presented by Israel at the Summit were well received and were accorded legitimacy by the U.S. hosts. President Clinton, in his statement following the Summit, praised the flexibility shown by Prime Minister Barak and the Israel delegation during the talks.

5. Many ideas and proposals were presented by Israel during the course of the negotiations. However, the ground-rules of the Camp David talks established that, in the absence of an agreement, these negotiating positions are no longer valid and are rendered null and void. Consequently, the positions presented by Israel during the Summit cannot be used as the basis for Palestinian demands, claims and opening positions in future negotiations.

6. During the course of the Summit, the Palestinian leadership showed that it had not yet internalized the need to demonstrate flexibility and compromise on a number of key issues. In particular, the positions presented by Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat with regard to Jerusalem prevented the achievement of an agreement. The leadership of the Arab world did not provide Arafat with sufficient backing for a more flexible stance, and demonstrated a lack of willingness to exert the necessary influence on the Palestinian delegation to bring about an internalization of the need for real compromise.

7. Any possible unilateral actions by the Palestinians in the wake of the Summit are unjustified and counterproductive. The ongoing relationship between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, and the conduct of negotiations between them, must be based upon mutual agreement and remain free of external pressure. In this regard, the parties declared in their statement at the end of the Summit:

"The two sides understand the importance of avoiding unilateral actions that prejudge the outcome of negotiations, and that their differences will be resolved only by good faith negotiations."

8. Some Palestinian circles have intimated and even declared that they intend to resort to violence should the Camp David Summit fail. There is not justification for such a reaction, and Israel will do everything within its authority to maintain calm and prevent violence.

Source: Israeli Foreign Ministry.