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VOICE OF AMERICA
SLUG: 2-317376 US/Israel/Barrier (S)
DATE:
NOTE NUMBER:

DATE=7/9/2004

TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT

TITLE=U-S/ISRAEL/BARRIER (S-Only)

NUMBER=2-317376

BYLINE=NICK SIMEONE

DATELINE=WASHINGTON

CONTENT=

VOICED AT:

HEADLINE: US Says Israel Barrier Decision May Compliate Peace Efforts

INTRO: The United States says it is still studying Friday's ruling by the International Court of Justice that declared Israel in violation of international law for building a barrier along the West Bank, which Israel says is needed to keep out terrorists. Correspondent Nick Simeone has more on Washington's reaction to the U.N. court's ruling.

TEXT: State Department Spokesman Richard Boucher told reporters the U-S view is that Friday's court decision could complicate Israeli-Palestinian peace efforts.

/// BOUCHER ACT ///

"We submitted a written statement to the court discouraging it from taking up the (UN) General Assembly's request, and from taking any actions that would interfere with, or be inconsistent with, the peace efforts that we are pursuing."

/// END ACT ///

The U.N. court's decisions are advisory and not legally binding, and Israel said it would not act on the court's decision. Palestinian leaders hailed the court's ruling.

The Bush administration has already made its view clear to Israel that the barrier is not helpful to the peace process.

Palestinians have called the barrier an attempt to grab occupied West Bank land. Israel says the barrier is necessary to protect against Palestinian terrorist attacks.

Israel's Supreme Court has already ordered parts of the wall to be rerouted to better balance Israeli security needs with humanitarian needs of the Palestinians. (SIGNED)

NEB/NJS/TW/FC



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