Israeli minister seeks agreed pullback

March 28, 2004 at 4:34 PM

TEL AVIV, Israel, March 28 (UPI) -- Israeli Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom and Minister on the Treasury Meir Sheetrit Sunday opposed a unilateral pullback from occupied territories.

In consultations among ministers of the ruling Likud Party Shalom said there are moderate leaders on the Palestinian side and Israel should work for an arrangement with them, though they fear Palestinian President Yasser Arafat, the Haaretz newspaper reported.

"If we want an arrangement to hold for a long time we have to do it with a partner (on the other side,)" he reportedly argued.

Such a move requires U.S. and international backing, Shalom added.

Minister Sheetrit, usually considered a dovish element in the Likud, also said Israel should leave Gaza in the framework of an agreement and not carry out a unilateral withdrawal, Haaretz reported.

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