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Sharansky quits

The week's news at a glance.

Jerusalem

Natan Sharansky resigned from the Israeli Cabinet this week, saying he strongly disagreed with Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s plan to unilaterally withdraw Israeli troops and settlers from the Gaza Strip. Sharansky, a former Soviet dissident, said the withdrawal should be linked to specific Palestinian reforms. Simply abandoning Gaza and cutting off all trade and ties, he told The New York Times, “will weaken the democratic forces in Palestinian society” and could spark “an increase of terror.” Sharansky is the author of The Case for Democracy, a book much praised by President Bush. Bush, though, supports Sharon’s disengagement plan.

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