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'Roadmap' to Mideast Peace Will Need Courage, Vision to Succeed, says Britain

Britain is urging Israel and the Palestinians to work without delay to implement the new Middle East peace plan.

British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw says the road map to peace will require "visionary leadership and courageous statesmanship" from both sides.

Mr. Straw deplored the Palestinian suicide bombing that killed three people and wounded more than 30 in Tel Aviv, just hours before the peace plan was presented to Israeli and Palestinian leaders. He pledged full support to help the two sides crack down on such violence.

"We in Britain, together with the rest of the international community, will do everything we can to support them, including action by us to help the security forces of both sides bear down on the kind of terrible indiscriminate violence from rejectionist groups that we saw overnight," he said.

Speaking to reporters in London, Mr. Straw also said the peace plan offers a stark choice for the region.

"Either the Palestinian and Israeli peoples continue into this vortex of decline and violence, or, with the help of the international community, they are able to build their way out of it," he said.

The foreign secretary said both sides will have to make what he called "difficult and painful" compromises to reach the goal of a final and comprehensive settlement by 2005.