Israel Government Press Office, November 26, 1997
November 13, 1997
Following is a clarification of four common misunderstandings
concerning the Further Redeployment (FRD) of Israeli forces in
Judea and Samaria (the West Bank):
Myth: Israel is obligated to withdraw from 90% of Judea and
Samaria during the three Further Redeployments.
Fact: The Oslo 2 Accords make no mention of percentages or the size
of territory from which Israel is to withdraw. There is no basis in
the accord for the Palestinian claim that Israel must pull back
from all or most of Judea and Samaria.
Myth: Israel is obligated to negotiate the extent of each
withdrawal with the Palestinian Authority (PA).
Fact: Nowhere in the Oslo Accords does it state that the extent of
each withdrawal is to be a subject of negotiations between the two
sides. Israel has the sole authority to decide the extent of the
withdrawals. This position is supported by the United States. A
statement issued by the State Department spokesman on January 15,
1997, at the time of the signing of the Hebron Accord, said, “The
Note for the Record, prepared by the United States at the request
of the parties, makes clear that further redeployment phases are
issues for implementation by Israel rather than issues for
negotiation with the Palestinians.”
Myth: Just as the PA has fulfilled its obligations under the
accords, so too Israel must now carry out the FRDs.
Fact: Under the January 15, 1997 Hebron accord, both Israel
and the PA undertook a series of obligations listed in the accord
and in the Note for the Record accompanying it. Israel has
fulfilled all of its obligations:
- 1) Withdrawal of Israeli forces
- from most of Hebron;
2) Delineation of areas to be evacuated in the first FRD;
3) Release of Palestinian prisoners;
4) Resumption of negotiations on outstanding issues; and
5) Agreement on the resumption of permanent status talks.
The PA has not fulfilled any of its obligations:
- 1) to complete the
- revision of the PLO covenant which calls for Israel’s destruction;
- 2) to fight terror and prevent violence, including uprooting the
- infrastructure of terror groups, the confiscation of illegal
- firearms, the apprehension and punishment of terrorists, the
- transfer of terror suspects to Israel, the prevention of incitement
- to violence and the strengthening of security cooperation with
- 3) to reduce the size of the Palestinian police to the
- number permitted by Oslo 2 (the Palestinian police currently
- consist of at least 35,500 men, or nearly 50% more than the 24,000
- allowed); and
- 4) to refrain from governmental activity in areas not
- under PA jurisdiction, such as Jerusalem.
Israel has complied with all of its commitments. The PA has
violated all of its obligations.
Myth: Israel is responsible for the delay in the
implementation of the first FRD.
Fact: Under the Note for the Record accompanying the January
15, 1997 Hebron accord, Israel was obligated to carry out the first
phase of the further redeployment in the West Bank during the first
week of March 1997.
On March 6, 1997, the Israeli Cabinet voted to approve the first
phase of the redeployment, consisting of 9.1% of the territory.
This figure includes 7% of territory that is currently Area B
(Israeli security control, Palestinian civilian control) and 2.1%
of Area C (exclusive Israeli control). The redeployment would have
tripled the amount of territory under exclusive Palestinian control
in the West Bank. The Palestinians rejected the Israeli Cabinet
decision, thus causing the delay of its implementation on the