Disengagement Plan of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon
April 16, 2004
Israel is committed to the peace process and aspires to reach an agreed resolution of the conflict on the basis of the principle of two states for two peoples, the State of Israel as the state of the Jewish people and a Palestinian state for the Palestinian people, as part of the implementation of President Bush's vision.
Israel is concerned to advance and improve the current situation. Israel has come to the conclusion that there is currently no reliable Palestinian partner with which it can make progress in a bilateral peace process. Accordingly, it has developed a plan of unilateral disengagement, based on the following considerations:
2. Main elements
3. Security situation following the disengagement
In general, these will be dismantled and removed, with the exception of those which Israel decides to leave and transfer to another party.
5. Security assistance to the Palestinians
Israel agrees that by coordination with it, advice, assistance and training will be provided to the Palestinian security forces for the implementation of their obligations to combat terrorism and maintain public order, by American, British, Egyptian, Jordanian or other experts, as agreed with Israel.
No foreign security presence may enter the Gaza Strip or the West Bank without being coordinated with and approved by Israel.
6. The border area between the Gaza Strip and Egypt (Philadelphi Route)
Initially, Israel will continue to maintain a military presence along the border between the Gaza Strip and Egypt (Philadelphi route). This presence is an essential security requirement. At certain locations security considerations may require some widening of the area in which the military activity is conducted.
Subsequently, the evacuation of this area will be considered. Evacuation of the area will be dependent, inter alia, on the security situation and the extent of cooperation with Egypt in establishing a reliable alternative arrangement.
If and when conditions permit the evacuation of this area, Israel will be willing to consider the possibility of the establishment of a seaport and airport in the Gaza Strip, in accordance with arrangements to be agreed with Israel.
7. Israeli towns and villages
Israel will strive to leave the immovable property relating to Israeli towns and villages intact.
The transfer of Israeli economic activity to Palestinians carries with it the potential for a significant improvement in the Palestinian economy.
Israel proposes that an international body be established (along the lines of the AHLC), with the agreement of the United States and Israel, which shall take possession from Israel of property which remains, and which will estimate the value of all such assets.
Israel reserves the right to request that the economic value of the assets left in the evacuated areas be taken into consideration.
8. Civil Infrastructure and Arrangements
Infrastructure relating to water, electricity, sewage and telecommunications serving the Palestinians will remain in place. Israel will strive to leave in place the infrastructure relating to water, electricity and sewage currently serving the Israeli towns and villages. In general, Israel will enable the continued supply of electricity, water, gas and petrol to the Palestinians, in accordance with current arrangements. Other existing arrangements, such as those relating to water and the electro-magnetic sphere shall remain in force.
9. Activity of International Organizations
Israel recognizes the great importance of the continued activity of international humanitarian organizations assisting the Palestinian population. Israel will coordinate with these organizations arrangements to facilitate this activity.
10. Economic arrangements
In general, the economic arrangements currently in operation between Israel and the Palestinians shall, in the meantime, remain in force. These arrangements include, inter alia:
In the longer term, and in line with Israel's interest in encouraging greater Palestinian economic independence, Israel expects to reduce the number of Palestinian workers entering Israel. Israel supports the development of sources of employment in the Gaza Strip and in Palestinian areas of the West Bank.
11. Erez Industrial Zone
The Erez industrial zone, situated in the Gaza Strip, employs some 4000 Palestinian workers. The continued operation of the zone is primarily a clear Palestinian interest. Israel will consider the continued operation of the zone on the current basis, on two conditions:
Alternatively, the industrial zone shall be transferred to the responsibility of an agreed Palestinian or international entity.
Israel will seek to examine, together with Egypt, the possibility of establishing a joint industrial area in the area between the Gaza Strip, Egypt and Israel.
12. International passages
13. Erez Crossing Point
The Israeli part of Erez crossing point will be moved to a location within Israel in a time frame to be determined separately.
The process of evacuation is planned to be completed by the end of 2005. The stages of evacuation and the detailed timetable will be notified to the United States.
Israel looks to the international community for widespread support for the disengagement plan. This support is essential in order to bring the Palestinians to implement in practice their obligations to combat terrorism and effect reforms, thus enabling the parties to return to the path of negotiation.
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