Shalom surveys diplomatic situation

June 27, 2004 at 1:49 PM
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JERUSALEM, June 27 (UPI) -- Israeli Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom says Israel wants to increase coordination with Egypt and Jordan as it prepares to withdraw from occupied territories.

The Egyptians have prepared a security plan that includes merging the Palestinian Authority's dozen security apparatus' into three.

Shalom told the cabinet Sunday the Egyptians have given Palestinian President Yasser Arafat two more months to merge those organizations and appoint "appropriate people " to lead them. Currently Arafat heads all of the security organizations through the Palestinian National Security Council.

The Jordanians have expressed "preliminary readiness" to help restore security in the West Bank and help train Palestinian policemen, Shalom added.

Meanwhile, Israel's diplomats are trying to channel international support for the separation plan so that the United States, not Europe, would continue to lead the peace process.

Closer ties are being sought with the donor states on economic and humanitarian issues, Shalom told the ministers.

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