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Rabin's Daughter Quits Israeli Defense Ministry in Frustration

July 24, 2002|From Associated Press

JERUSALEM — Israeli Deputy Defense Minister Dalia Rabin-Pelossof resigned Tuesday, and colleagues said she quit because she was frustrated by Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's reluctance to reopen peace talks with the Palestinians.

Rabin-Pelossof is the daughter of assassinated Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, who began a peace process with the Palestinians in 1993. She had been increasingly critical of Sharon's hard-line leadership in recent months, but there was no indication that Israel's deadly attack early Tuesday in the Gaza Strip was a reason for her resignation.

Rabin-Pelossof has been urging the moderate Labor Party, to which she belongs, to withdraw from Sharon's government, but the party has remained in the coalition with his hard-line Likud.

"She could no longer be part of this government that tells the Israeli public that there are no solutions to our problems," Labor lawmaker Ophir Pines-Paz told the Haaretz newspaper.

Rabin-Pelossof will remain a member of parliament and will expand her work with the Rabin Center for Peace, Haaretz said.

She has publicly expressed opposition to Sharon's efforts to isolate Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat.

"The government decided that Arafat is not relevant," she said on Israel Television in December. "This is not my opinion. In the end, we will have to speak to someone."

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