Wednesday, February 22, 2006
AFP: Rice fails to dissuade Arab support of Hamas
AFP News -- Wednesday, 45 minutes ago
RIYADH (AFP) - US Secretary of Statemet with Arab refusal to isolate Hamas as she arrived in Saudi Arabia on the second leg of a Middle East tour aimed at putting pressure on the Palestinian movement to renounce violence.
US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice (2nd right) with Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz in Riyadh, right. Rice met with Arab refusal to isolate Hamas as she arrived in Saudi Arabia on the second leg of a Middle East tour aimed at putting pressure on the Palestinian movement to renounce violence. (AFP/SPA)
Her Saudi counterpart, Prince Saud al-Faisal, warned that Riyadh would continue to back thefinancially, even after the radical movement won elections in the territories.
"We do not want to link international aid to the Palestinian people with considerations other than their terrible humanitarian needs," Saud told a press conference held jointly with Rice, who repeated the American position that the US was conscious of the Palestinians' needs.
Washington has asked the Palestinian Authority to return 50 million dollars in aid for infrastructure projects, fearing that it would fall into the hands of Hamas, regarded as a terrorist group by the US and Europe.
A senior State Department official, asking not to be named, said: "We have not made all the decisions. It is conceivable that we would redirect the money to humanitarian needs instead of infrastructure."
But Saud rejected this, saying that both humanitarian and infrastructure aid were needed.
Before arriving in Saudi Arabia, Rice held talks in Cairo with Egyptian Presidentwhich focused on the aftermath of Hamas' victory last month in Palestinian elections.
During a joint press conference with Foreign Minister Ahmed Abul Gheit on Tuesday, she reiterated the tough stance of her administration, which lists Hamas as a terrorist organisation.
"You cannot have one foot in the camp of terror and another foot in the camp of politics," she said, adding that the international community expected the Islamist movement to recognise the Jewish state's right to exist.
Hamas, which is responsible for some of the deadliest attacks against, has used softer language since its resounding electoral victory over the mainstream but has stopped short of considering normalisation with the Jewish state.
"We should give Hamas time," Abul Gheit said. "I'm sure that Hamas will develop, will evolve. We should not prejudge the issue," Abul Gheit said.
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Okay. Palestinians have a fair and democratic election and they decide to elect militants. Now Rice is mouthing off that the Palestinians elected representatives that Israel and its U.S administration Likudniks don't like.
So we will starve them. Now you know why I hate these people in Washington
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