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The BBC's John Leyne
"This sort of campaigning for peace is hardly setting Israel alight"
 real 28k

Monday, 24 July, 2000, 01:03 GMT 02:03 UK
Compromise fears over Jerusalem
Egyptian President Mubarak and Saudi Arabia's King Fahd
Mr Mubarak visited Saudi Arabia's King Fahd
The future of Jerusalem continues to be the main sticking-point in the Middle East peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians.

But it is not just the Israeli people who are worried about how far a potential compromise could go.

There is widespread concern in the Arab world that Palestinians are under pressure to give too much away, says the BBC correspondent in Cairo, Caroline Hawley,

Jerusalem is believed to have been the main focus of discussions during a previously unscheduled visit to Saudi Arabia on Sunday by the Egyptian president, Hosni Mubarak.

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak
Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak says support for peace is strong
It follows a visit to Egypt on Saturday by the Jordanian foreign minister. Again, Jerusalem was the main topic for discussion.

Both Egypt and Saudi Arabia regard Arab East Jerusalem as Israeli-occupied territory, and the head of the Arab League, Ismet Abdelmagid, has said that Jerusalem is not just a Palestinian issue.

One Egyptian newspaper, al-Ahram, has warned that history would condemn anyone who, in its words, let himself be seduced into signing an agreement giving up Arab rights in Jerusalem.

Meanwhile, our correspondent in Tel Aviv says many Israelis are worried by what the outcome of the peace talks will be.

Opinion polls show the public does support the talks taking place, but they do not want to compromise over Jerusalem.

Those opposed to the talks have made their views clear.

Last week more than 100,000 protesters gathered on Rabin Square to protest against the negotiations.

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak has said the majority of people support peace. But so far at least, no-one is out demonstrating for it.

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See also:

20 Jul 00 | Middle East
Accusations fly over Mid-East deadlock
21 Jul 00 | Middle East
Tricks and traps on road to peace
22 Jul 00 | Middle East
New ball game at Camp David
20 Jul 00 | Middle East
Analysis: A faltering peace
20 Jul 00 | Media reports
Press mulls 'Jerusalem Syndrome'
18 Jul 00 | Middle East
Adversaries fail to bond
18 Jul 00 | Middle East
Refugees: No place like home
19 Jul 00 | Middle East
Jerusalem: Difficult divisions
17 Jul 00 | Middle East
Analysis: Paying for peace
31 Jan 00 | Middle East
Jerusalem: Eternal, intractable
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