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Bombing aimed at disrupting Roadmap, says Goff

Hon Phil Goff
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Media Statement

21 August 2003

Bombing aimed at disrupting Roadmap, says Goff

Foreign Minister Phil Goff today condemned the latest suicide bombing in Jerusalem.

Twenty people died and over 100 were wounded when a bus was blown up in Jerusalem on Tuesday.

"New Zealand offers its condolences to the victims of this attack," Mr Goff said.

"It was a calculated and brutal act, whose perpetrators were prepared to kill and main innocent people, including children, to defeat efforts to find a peaceful solution to conflict in the Middle East.

"This action cannot be allowed to restart the vicious cycle of violence and retaliation, where each new killing further entrenches the bitterness and hatred on each side.

"The Roadmap, sponsored by the United Nations, the United States, the European Union and Russia, offers the best chance there is at this point to end the violence and the cost inflicted on both sides.

"The Palestinian and Israeli leaderships must not be deflected from their commitment to pursue a peaceful resolution to a conflict which has gone on too long and caused too much suffering.

"Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas has cut contacts with militants and vowed to take measures against them. He has deplored the damage militants continue to do to the higher national interest of the Palestinian people.

"A decision by Israel in response to the provocation of the bombing to end talks would represent not a defeat for the terrorists but in fact a victory, giving them what they hoped to achieve from the bombing.

"Real leadership from both communities requires a strengthened resolve to end the conflict and the injustices which both give rise to and follow from it," Mr Goff said.

All Phil Goff’s media releases and speeches are posted at www.beehive.govt.nz

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