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Save the Mideast peace process

People's Weekly World, 9 August 1997

The following is a statement by the Communist Party USA on last week's terrorist attack in Jerusalem.

The suicide bombing of the Mahane Yehuda market in Jerusalem with the death of 15 innocent people and the wounding of scores more was a deliberate attempt to kill the peace process. The Communist Party USA condemns this terrorist bombing.

Hamas, the fanatical right-wing extremist group, claimed responsibility for the crime. The bombing took place at a time when there was growing pressure in Israel and worldwide for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to comply with the Oslo Agreement and to stop the provacative construction of settlements in the West Bank.

Netanyahu seized on the bombing to justify his peace-wrecking policy. Nothing more clearly exposes the dangerous, reactionary policy of Hamas which invariably plays into the hands of the Netanyahu government and those who seek to destroy the peace and instigate Israeli-Palestinian fratricide.

This vicious bombing comes at a time of ever strengthening bonds between the Israeli peace movement and the Palestinian people including joint demonstrations and marches by Israeli and Palestinian women proclaiming Jerusalem an undivided city and the capital of two states - Israel and Palestine.

The promise of the peace process is coexistence, reconciliation and progress for both the Jewish and Palestinian people. This bombing is an attempt to destroy that hope just as it is beginning to bear fruit.

Only the interests of reaction, oil imperialism first of all, are served by this heinous act of terrorism. We must not permit them to achieve their goal. Those who instigated this crime against the peace must be apprehended and prosecuted.

At the same time, the only way to thwart Netanyahu and those who would wreck the peace process is to move quickly to implement the Oslo Agreement, to demand Israel's compliance with United Nations Resolutions 242 and 338 which call for withdrawal from the Arab occupied lands.

The answer to the terrorists is a secure Israel within its 1967 borders and statehood for the Palestinian people.