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VOICE OF AMERICA
SLUG: 2-323382 Israel Tulkarem Pullout (L-O)
DATE:
NOTE NUMBER:

DATE=3/20/2005

TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT

TITLE= ISRAEL-TULKAREM PULLOUT (L-O)

NUMBER=2-323382

BYLINE=ROBERT BERGER

DATELINE= JERUSALEM

CONTENT=

VOICED AT:

HEADLINE: Israel to Pullout of Tulkarem in West Bank.

INTRO: Israel plans to pull out of another West Bank town this week. As Robert Berger reports from VOA's Jerusalem Bureau, the withdrawal is going ahead, despite a West Bank ambush that shook the Mideast cease-fire.

TEXT: Israel announced that the army will put out of the West Bank town of Tulkarem on Monday and hand control to the Palestinian Authority.

Under a cease-fire agreement declared last month in Egypt, Israel agreed to pull out of five West Bank towns. But the withdrawals were postponed for weeks because of disagreements over security arrangements and a deadly suicide bombing in Tel Aviv. The deadlock was broken last week, prompting Israel to pull out of the West Bank town of Jericho.

Israeli Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom says it i now up to the Palestinians to fight terrorism.

/// SHALOM ACT ///

"... we would like to believe that ... those cities. The Palestinians will do everything to prevent those extremists from carrying out more attacks against us."

/// END ACT ///

The Palestinian Authority has agreed to do that, but it will not be easy. In the West Bank, Palestinian gunmen opened fire on an Israeli patrol, wounding three Israeli soldiers and a policeman, and rattling the Mideast cease-fire. Mr. Shalom says such attacks threaten the agreement.

/// SHALOM ACT ///

"Israel will be compelled to react, and of course we do not want to have this escalation."

/// END ACT ///

While the major Palestinian militant groups like Hamas and Islamic Jihad have agreed to halt attacks against Israel, some rebel factions have vowed to sabotage the cease-fire. (SIGNED)

NEB/RB/RAE



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