Dan Meridor
Photo: Dudi Vaaknin

Meridor: 'Natural Growth' was part of Road Map

Intelligence Services minister says that while agreement between Bush administration, Ariel Sharon's government did demand suspension of settlement expansion, 'there were understandings as to the nature the move'

"We never had a deal with the Republican administration, we had an agreement with the United States," Minister of Intelligence Services and Israel's Atomic Energy Commission Dan Meridor said Monday, during a foreign press briefing in Jerusalem.


Meridor was headed to a briefing with Defense Minister Ehud Barak, ahead of his New York visit, next.


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Speaking of the Road Map agreement, struck between the US and former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's government, Meridor said that "the relations between the two countries are based in mutual agreements, and agreements must be upheld.


"In 2003, Israel accepted the Road Map plan and the government voted in favor of it, while filing 14 reservations. It is part of a larger agreement, some of which was in writing and some of it was oral, that has been implemented for the past six years.


"We never had a deal with the Republican administration; we had an agreement with the United States. Yes, it entailed halting settlement expansion, including for "natural growth," and it was in writing, but there were understandings as to the nature and the interpretation of the suspension.


"These understandings were a part of the agreement. Its written part and its oral part compliment each other."


Meridor rushed to his briefing with Barak and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as soon as the press meet was over.


Israel's position on settlement expansion, as it is shaping to be, will try to appease the Obama administration on one hand, but Jerusalem will refuse to be dictated to by Washington."


פרסום ראשון: 06.29.09, 12:47
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