Peace with a hefty price? Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit said Tuesday that a future peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinian Authority will "cost" the world between $40 and $50 billion.
Speaking with Cairo's official news agency, Aboul Gheit said the amount will allow the fledgling Palestinian state to sustain itself, and offer the Palestinians some compensation for lands and services lost.
"An Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement is first and foremost in the best interest of both sides, but it is a priority for the regions as well," he said.
In reference to the settlement freeze, which is scheduled to end on September 26, Aboul Gheit said that the subject will be "the first test to Israel earnest in the process."
The volatile issue, he added, may bring about the end of the negotiations if it is not handles properly, since "the Palestinians are sure to halt the talks if the (freeze) in not extended.
"I have been hearing many good things about the good intentions of senior Israeli officials, but that has to be translated into viable negotiation stands on the ground," he concluded.
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