Wednesday, November 17, 2004


Shalom: No Elections for East Jerusalemites

FOREIGN MINISTER SHALOM: Jerusalem is the eternal capital, undivided capitalof Israel, and we, of course, will do everything to keep it this way. About the Palestinians that are living there, I would like you to know that even in the example of the last election in 1996, there were no elections in Jerusalem. Those Palestinians voted then only through envelopes through the mail office, so we didn't have election, even in 1996, then, in Jerusalem, and I believe it should be the same, that there would be no elections in Jerusalem.
FOREIGN MINISTER SHALOM: As I've said, we'll do everything in order to give them the possibility to enable them to have their election, to have a free and fair election. We will do everything that is needed to give them freedomof movement, but of course, we'll do it while we are not doing anything to harm or to damage our security or our safety. We will do it in a way that will enable them to have the possibility to vote without, as I've said, damaging our security. I think it can be done and we are planning to do it. We will give them all the assistance that they will ask for and that they will need because we would like them to have a free election for the first time.It will be very positive signal that in January we will have free elections in Iraq and within the Palestinian Authority. It might encourage some other countries in our region to ask for the same system of democracy to have an election in their countries. And we had enough being the only democracy in our region for almost 60 years. We would like others to join us.


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