AFL-CIO Statement on Terrorism and Violence in the Middle East
On behalf of the working men and women of the AFL-CIO, we extend our deepest condolences to the families of the victims of the Palestinian suicide bombers who attacked civilians at work and at rest in Jerusalem and in Haifa, Israel.
These acts of terror and anarchy are in the opposite direction of the course to peace and civilized relations, and do not represent a legitimate quest for a shared existence.
We categorically condemn these acts of terrorism, which have again struck at the heart of working Israel.
The shared pain of the Middle East conflict must be broken and not recycled. We must realize peace in that troubled region. These attacks are aimed at destroying the possibility for resumption of peace talks between leaders of the Israeli government and leaders of the Palestinian Authority. The lives of working people in Israel and in the Palestinian Authority are only worsened by such terrorist acts.
Chairman Yasir Arafat and the other leaders of the Palestinian Authority must find the political and moral courage to effectively bring those who plan and lead such murderous attacks to account. Now is not the time for silence nor acquiescence to the most extreme. Now is the time for bringing those responsible to justice, and returning to the path of confidence-building, negotiations and a fair resolution to the many serious divisions between the Israeli people and the Palestinian people.
We urge the Israeli government and the Palestinian National Authority to work diligently to end the cycle of violence. More killing of innocent civilians will not achieve the desired result of mutual security and shared existence.