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UNITED NATIONS
Department of Public Information · News Coverage Service · New York


SG/SM/8720
27 May 2003

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TRANSCRIPT OF PRESS CONFERENCE BY SECRETARY-GENERAL KOFI ANNAN AND SPECIAL

REPRESENTATIVE FOR IRAQ, SERGIO VIEIRA DE MELLO, 27 MAY


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Question:  This might be a little unrelated, but it is in the news.  On the Road Map, reportedly one of the 14 conditions or reservations Israel has made is that the only part of the Quartet that will oversee the implementation on the ground will be the United States, and not the other three.  Being one of the other three, will you insist that the United Nations will be in it?  Also, what do you think of Israel’s acceptance of the Road Map?

The Secretary-General:  I think it is a very encouraging development that Israel has accepted the Road Map.  The Prime Minister has indicated that he has some questions that he is going to pose later.  But the fact that he has accepted it is a positive development.  And the Quartet, and the international community, has the basis for moving forward in assisting the two parties to resolve their conflict.

As to the suggestion that Israel will only accept the United States as a party on the ground –- I take it to monitor the Road Map –- it is something that we will tackle as we move forward.  But I think that all the partners are concerned to see effective action.  We want to see progress; we want to see an end to this painful conflict.  And we will, I am sure, accept any arrangement that will help us achieve that objective.

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