Press Releases

          28 October 2004

    Secretary-General Hails Israel’s Parliamentary Vote in Favour of Gaza Withdrawal

    NEW YORK, 27 October (UN Headquarters) -- The following statement is attributable to the Spokesman for Secretary-General Kofi Annan:

    The Secretary-General congratulates Prime Minister Sharon on the historic vote in the Knesset, which produced a clear majority in favour of his initiative to withdraw from Gaza and parts of the northern West Bank.

    The Secretary-General remains supportive of a full and complete Israeli withdrawal, leading to the end of the occupation of the Gaza Strip.

    The Secretary-General very much hopes that the Israeli withdrawal will have the effect of reviving peace efforts, which must be based on the Road Map.  As such, withdrawal could be an important step towards a process that will eventually result in the end of the Israeli occupation of the West Bank, paving the way for the establishment of a sovereign, democratic, viable and contiguous Palestinian State living side by side in peace with a secure Israel.

    * *** *