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May 10, 2006 22:25
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ANNAN: ...We reiterated our grave concern that the Palestinian Authority government has so far failed to commit itself to the principles of nonviolence, recognition of Israel, and acceptance of previous agreements and obligations, including the road map. The Quartet's donor members...expressed their willingness to work towards the restoration of international assistance to the Palestinian Authority once it has committed to these principles. ...The Quartet... also expressed concern about settlement expansion and the route of the barrier [and]... serious concern about deteriorating conditions in the West Bank and Gaza and about the delivery of humanitarian assistance, economic life, social cohesion, and Palestinian institutions. ...We also express our willingness to endorse a temporary international mechanism limited in duration and scope and fully accountable that ensures direct delivery of any assistance to the Palestinian people. The Quartet also welcomed the EU's offer to develop and propose such a mechanism and invites donors and international organizations to consider participating. The Quartet urges Israel, in parallel, to take steps to improve the humanitarian situation of the Palestinian people. CONDOLEEZZA RICE: ...We do believe that a well designed, temporary and clearly defined in scope and duration mechanism. I think the full statement refers to reviewing the need for such a mechanism after a period of three months. But let me just say that the thrust of the statement is that the international community is still trying to respond to the needs of the Palestinian people. We have - the United States is today making available $10 million in "in-kind" assistance to meet the emergency needs on the medical side and the international community is trying to respond. We call on Israel to respond. But ultimately, the resolution to this is a Palestinian government that accepts its responsibilities for governing; that accepts the Quartet's requirements and the norms that would help us get to a two-state solution and back on to the road map. But since the EU is, in fact, going to take the lead, perhaps I could ask [EU Foreign Minister Benita Ferrero-Waldner] to talk about the timing. - From a May 9 Quartet Press Conference in New York City

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