Rice, Livni hold joint press conference

Sunday, February 18, 2007 |  by Staff Writer
US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is scheduled to meet with Prime Minister Ehud Olmert on Sunday at the start of the trilateral summit to discuss a two-state solution.

Rice, Olmert and Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas will participate in the conference.

In a joint press conference with Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni on Saturday evening, Rice said this is the time to discuss a Palestinian state. However, Rice reiterated the need the Palestinian government to meet the three conditions for international acceptance by recognizing Israel, renouncing violence and accepting interim peace deals with Israel.

Livni reminded Rice that the PA government’s agreement with Hamas did not meet this criterion.

“These requirements are not an obstacle to peace, but they are the basic conditions and the foundation for the vision of two-state solution,” Livni said. “I think that also the moderates on the Palestinian side need to understand that the path toward a Palestinian state goes through the renunciation of violence and terrorism and not by compromising with terror.”

Rice said these principles are the foundations for peace. “It only makes sense that you have to renounce violence,” she said.

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