WASHINGTON (October 14, 1998) -- Israeli and Palestinian leaders meeting tomorrow in Washington should seize the opportunity at hand to make progress towards peace "without hesitation," according to the Chairman of the Bishops' International Policy Committee.
Archbishop Theodore E. McCarrick of Newark today called on all Americans to give "the widest possible support" for renewed peace negotiations between Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Yassir Arafat, scheduled for October 15 under the sponsorship of President Clinton.
"We hope that the recently renewed contacts will help restore both hope and urgency," Archbishop McCarrick said. "President Arafat and Prime Minister Netanyahu must endeavor to find ways to put hope back in the process."
Archbishop McCarrick outlined both sides' needs. He said that while Israel needs to be free from terror, that nation must also refrain from actions which threaten Palestinian lives. Palestinians, on the other hand, need to be "free of occupation, to deal with Israelis daily on a basis of equality and dignity, to enjoy their human rights free of arbitrary treatment by either government and to be unencumbered to engage in commerce so as to rebuild their economy and re-make their shattered society."