RealNews

Disarm terrorists, White House tells Abbas

A mooted Palestinian ceasefire is insufficient, the White House said yesterday, insisting it must be accompanied by the complete disarmament and dismantling of terrorist groups and militants who reject Israel’s right to exist. Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon echoed the demand, telling new Palestinian prime minister Mahmoud Abbas during a three-hour meeting between the two last night that he must break up terrorist organizations, arrest terrorists and confiscate weapons. The demands were made only hours after hints of a Hamas ceasefire emerged ahead of crucial talks next week when U.S. President George W. Bush will meet the Israeli and Palestinian first ministers in Jordan. “What’s important is for the Palestinian Authority to move immediately to completely disarm and dismantle those groups that oppose a two-state solution and employ terror and violence in order to achieve their aims,” White House spokesman Ari Fleischer said in a move that seemingly raised the bar higher for Mr. Abbas as he struggles to win a ceasefire declaration from militants. Full Story

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