Russian diplomat: Yasser Arafat's deportation would be mistake

The UN Security Council put off till today the voting on the draft resolution that denounces the decision by Israeli authorities to deport Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. Although on Monday the draft was supported by the overwhelming majority of the discussion's participants, the USA spoke against it. According to US representative to the UN John Negroponte in the current form the document has a unilateral anti-Israeli character.

Arafat's deportation could become "a serious political mistake that may lead to very negative consequences for the already difficult situation in the region," Russian representative Gennady Gatilov pointed out at the session. Such a step "would cross out a prospect of peaceful settlement of the Palestinian-Israeli crisis", Moscow believes.

UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Terje Roed-Larsen emphasized at the session that Yasser Arafat had to be taken into account, as he "represents the national morale and aspirations of Palestinian people".

The recent terrorist attacks of Palestinian extremists and Israel's "hunt" for HAMAS leaders have led to a full stop in the peace process, Roed-Larsen stated.

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