PM Ariel Sharon described his belief in the Jewish right to Jerusalem as the "essence of my Jewish consciousness." He spoke of Israel's "concessions" (withdrawal) in Gaza and the difficult decision he had to make "at a heavy personal price". "Our hearts desire remains to achieve peace with our neighbours," he said, stressing it is now up to the Palestinians to show their commitment to peace by developing their economy and a democratic government. Towards the end he said, "We know there are those who sit here, and who's leadership calls for wiping Israel off the face of the earth." And he chastised the UN Assembly for keeping silent.
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