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Thursday, September 04, 2003

Reuters: "U.S. blames Palestinians for Peace Deadlock"

I saw "U.S. blames" and thought for sure the next word would be Israel, but lo and behold . . .
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States on Thursday blamed the Palestinians for the deadlock in Middle East diplomacy and said there was no alternative to the peace plan known as the road map.

"I don't want to sugarcoat this," State Department spokesman Richard Boucher told a daily briefing.

"The main problem now is terrorism and violence and the Palestinian Authority needs to take hold of that problem if we are to move forward," he added.

Boucher said the United States was closely watching events in the Palestinian legislature, where Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas asked for new security powers on Thursday.

Abbas, the Palestinian politician favored by Washington as against popularly elected President Yasser Arafat, also criticized Israel and the United States, saying they had not done enough to make progress possible on the peace plan.
You can read the rest of this Reuters article at the Boston NPR website. The transcript of the daily briefing is not yet available at the State Department website. It will be interesting to see if there was more said by Boucher.

I like that bit about not sugarcoating this. Hey, let's not.