(Communicated by the President’s Spokesman)

President Moshe Katsav today (Thursday), 18.9.2003, made the following remarks at the joint press conference he held at his Jerusalem Residence with visiting Dominican Republic President Hipolito Mejia: “

If Arafat works towards a ceasefire and dismantles the terrorist organizations’ infrastructures, he could win worldwide praise and international recognition; it could enable the resumption of the diplomatic process…Arafat doesn’t need any permission, neither from Israel nor from the world, in order to work towards a halt in blowing up buses and cafes. The continuation of terror is liable to destroy the roadmap. If Arafat is interested in implementing the roadmap, he must first disarm the terrorist organizations – Hamas and Islamic Jihad. He must show responsibility. The Palestinians must understand that not stopping terror pushes them further away from realizing their dream of an independent state.”