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        General Assembly
28 October 1998

Fifty-third session
Agenda items 39 and 40
Question of Palestine
The situation in the Middle East

(Signed) Volodymyr Yel'chenko
Ambassador Extraordinary and
Permanent Representative of
Ukraine to the United Nations


In view of the conclusion of the Israeli-Palestinian talks held in the United States of America and the signing, as the result, of the Wye River Memorandum, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine is authorized to state that negotiations between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel and President Yasir Arafat of the Palestinian National Authority and the agreements they reached have been favourably received in Ukraine.

The Israeli-Palestinian talks are an important phase in the road towards the practical implementation of agreements concluded five years ago in Oslo. The signing of the Memorandum, contrary to attempts of radical forces on both sides to block the achievement of a compromise, testifies to the mutual political will aimed at keeping the momentum for the sake of finding mutually acceptable solutions to the problems of the Middle East settlement.

The steps undertaken by both sides to make the Israeli-Palestinian negotiating process more active and the concrete positive agreements that have been reached in its course give all grounds to expect that the political will demonstrated by the leaders of Israel and of the Palestinian National Authority will find support from both the Israeli and the Palestinian peoples, as well as from the entire world community, which cannot be indifferent to the fate of peace in the Middle East.

The mediatory efforts of the United States of America and the personal role of President Clinton, as the result of which the Middle East peace process has resumed its dynamism for the first time after a long recess, are highly appreciated in Ukraine. In Ukraine, this event is perceived as evidence of the fact that even the most complicated and protracted conflicts can and should be settled by political means, through negotiations.


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