SHAMIR SAYS VIOLENCE WILL NOT DERAIL TALKS
Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir said Oct. 29 the killing of Israeli soldiers and settlers would not derail historic peace talks with Israel's Arab foes."Some might have expected that in the face of this terrror, Israel would not attend the conference. But despite this violence, our press for peace is unrelenting," Mr. Shamir told reporters after arriving in Madrid for a Middle East conference due to open Oct. 30. As Shamir was flying to the talks, news broke that pro-Iranian gunmen had killed at least two Israeli soldiers in Israel's self-declared security zone in southern Lebanon. On the night of Oct. 28, suspected Palestinian gunmen ambushed a bus carrying Jewish settlers in the occupied West Bank killing two and wounding five. "We all who desire true peace should unite in condemning without any reservation these unspeakable acts," Shamir said. "We hope that here in Madrid will begin a process to realize our greatest aspirations. We do not wish to wait any longer for peace and truly plead, as if our counterparts have come here in the same spirit, our years of waiting will come to an end," Shamir said, reading from a handwritten speech. The conference gives the Jewish state something which it says it has always wanted - direct talks with its Arab neighbors, all but Egypt still technically at war with Israel. The United States and Soviet Union believe the conference, which they are cosponsoring, is the best chance ever of healing the 43-year-old rift tween Arabs and Israelis.