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Washington funds Palestinian campaign

Aug. 29, 2010 at 8:19 AM   |   Comments

JERUSALEM, Aug. 29 (UPI) -- Washington is funding an ad campaign in Israel featuring billboards of Palestinian officials asking: "We are partners -- what about you?"

The campaign launched Sunday includes the faces of senior Palestinian Authority officials Saeb Erekat, Jibril Rajoub and Yasser Abed Rabo, and Riad Malki, Palestinian foreign affairs minister, Yedioth Aharonoth said.

The aim of the campaign is to persuade Israelis that peace partners on the Palestinian side truly exist, and calls for support of a two-state solution, the Tel Aviv newspaper said.

The U.S. government was approached to fund the campaign by the Geneva Initiative founders, who drew up an agreement in 2003 to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the newspaper said.

The U.S. Agency for International Development, or USAID, invested close to $250,000 toward the creation of the billboards, the newspaper said.

The campaign has raised a few eyebrows in Israel.

"We are talking about a Palestinian Authority campaign funded by the American government," an Israeli Foreign Ministry official was quoted saying.

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