Skip to comments.Mofaz: Israel still committed to 'removing' Arafat
Posted on 09/06/2004 7:45:09 AM PDT by yonif
Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz said Monday that the government remains committed to "removing" Yasser Arafat from the Palestinian territories, although there are no current plans to do so.
"The state of Israel will find the way and the right time to bring about the removal of Yasser Arafat from the region," Mofaz said while answering listeners' questions on Army Radio.
Mofaz noted the Israeli security Cabinet's decision last year to "remove" Arafat following a series of Palestinian suicide bombings. "I think it is still relevant," Mofaz said.
At the time, officials hinted that the order could refer to expelling, killing or isolating the Palestinian leader.
Asked why Israel has delayed implementing the decision against Arafat, Mofaz implied this was to avoid aggravating tensions that could disrupt a plan to evacuate Israeli settlers and soldiers from the Gaza Strip next year.
"What guides us now ... is firstly to carry out the disengagement plan," Mofaz said.
Mofaz also reiterated Israel's claim that Syria continues to harbor Palestinian terror organizations, and that the orders and funding for attacks on Israeli come from group's headquarters in the Syrian capital.
"The State of Israel is determined to act against terror anywhere in the world," the former Chief of Staff said. "Terror leaders in Damascus should know that Israel will get to them, wherever they are."
Regarding the fate of missing airman Ron Arad, Mofaz said Israel is continuing its efforts to obtain information. He added that there were some new channels of communication that Israel, along with a team of German mediators, were exploring.
Arafat should be made to be a smudge on the carpet.
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