Prime Minister Sharon has addressed the Herzliya conference, the exclusive closed-door annual gathering of the country's very top political, security, intelligence, and business elite, every year since it was first convened in December 2000. Since he became prime minister, his speech to the conference——which is said to set Israel's long-term agenda——has been likened to the U.S. president's state of the union address; it was in this venue that he unveiled his disengagement plan in December 2003. The English translation of the speech appears on the foreign ministry Web site at

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