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(From BBC Monitoring International Reports)
Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has said that Israel will not move forward on peace while Palestinian "terror" continues in his political statement to the Knesset during a debate on the road map. Worldwide pressure was mounting against Hamas, he said. He also said that he had made it clear at the Aqaba summit that Palestinian refugees would not return to Israel. Asking MKs to support his statement, Sharon said that the road map was a framework rather than an agreement and that they would be consulted on any future agreements. The following is the text of the statement, broadcast live by Israel radio on 16 June; subheadings inserted editorially:
Mr Speaker, Members of Knesset: I listened attentively to your remarks and I wish to reply to you. Israel needs peace, Israel wants peace. The people of Israel will live here in peace. The people of Israel deserve quiet. The Israeli economy will prosper when there is quiet and a political process takes place. Tourists from around the world will once again walk in our streets. Israel will then be able to concentrate on developing our many talents here. Then, the real Israel will re-emerge, an Israel of science, sophisticated …