President Bush has condemned Wednesday's assassination of Israeli Tourism Minister Rehavam Zeevi. Mr. Bush said Palestinian authorities must take vigorous action against terrorism.

The president offered his condolences to the Israeli government, its people, and the family of Minister Zeevi. He called the killing a "despicable act" that is "further evidence of the need to fight terrorism."

Mr. Bush said it is appropriate that Palestinian officials have condemned the assassination but said "words are not enough." He said Palestinian leaders must immediately find those responsible for the murder and bring them to justice along with others who he says "would do harm to efforts to restore an atmosphere of calm and security for Israelis and Palestinians."

The president said leaders from both sides should seize the moment to put an end to violence, implement a U.S.-backed peace plan and resume political dialogue.