Washington, D.C. - Secretary of State Colin Powell last month vowed that the United States remains committed to the creation of a sovereign Palestinian state.
Calling Israel an occupier of Arab land, Sec. Powell stated that the Bush administration has not changed its view that Israel must give up land on the West Bank and in Gaza and stop Jewish housing construction to secure peace for the region.
The State Department also stated that Yasser Arafat must close Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other groups that have taken responsibility for fatal attacks on Israeli civilians.
Sec. Powell said that Arafat's televised statement demanding a halt to terrorist activity against Israel was not enough. "We have to see action," he said.