First Published: 2003-05-31

 
Bush vows to reach Mideast peace agreement
 

Bush says he will do everything he can to reach Mideast peace as Israelis, Palestinians drafting joint statement.

 

Middle East Online

The Palestinians want Israel to recognise their ambitions to statehood

RAMALLAH, West Bank & KRAKOW, Poland US President George W. Bush on Saturday pledged to do all he could to reach and enforce an Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement.

"I will do all I can to reach an agreement and see it enforced," Bush said here, looking ahead to twin Middle East peace summits he will co-host next week in Egypt and Jordan.

Israelis and Palestinians will craft a joint statement Saturday to be released at the close of next week's three-way summit of US, Israeli and Palestinian leaders, Palestinian sources said.

The sides agreed to draft the statement at the Thursday night meeting between Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and his Palestinian counterpart, Mahmud Abbas.

"The two sides agree to the publishing of a joint statement" on the internationally drafted roadmap for peace, said Nabil Abu Rudeina, a senior advisor to Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat.

They had started work on Friday, Palestinian sources said.

Dov Weisglass, Sharon's chief of staff, is participating in the discussions, Palestinian sources said.

The Palestinians want Israel to recognise their ambitions to statehood, while Israel wants the Palestinians to acknowledge its right to live within secure and stable borders, the sources said.

King Abdullah II will host US President George W. Bush, Abbas and Sharon in the Jordanian coastal resort of Aqaba on Wednesday. The summit, on the heels of a Tuesday gathering in Egypt of Bush and Arab leaders, aims to kickstart the roadmap.

The plan, drafted by the United States, Russia, European Union and United Nations, calls for the creation of a Palestinian state by the end of 2005, but hinges on the Palestinians cracking down on militant groups.

Meanwhile, the US Middle East envoy, William Burns, met in Ramallah Abbas, Palestinian foreign minister Nabil Shaath and security chief Mohammed Dahlan, who is tapped to play a crucial role in a crackdown on Palestinian militant groups.

For his part, Shaath confirmed Palestinian and Israeli teams were busy at work on the statement to be released at the end of the summit.

 

Heavy fighting shakes eastern Aleppo as army advances

Yemen prepares assault on Iran backed rebels near key strait

Palestinian Fatah conference ends with boost for Abbas

Nigeria and Morocco agree joint venture to link Africa to Europe

Blocked news website accuses Qatar government of censorship

China warns against obstruction of Iran nuclear deal

First buses take Aleppo residents back to ruined homes

Kurdish restrictions cause ‘unnecessary harm’ to Iraq Yazidis

Egypt court strikes down part of protest law

Syria army advances deeper into east Aleppo

US rules out military intervention in Libya

Saudi Arabia names new Labour Minister, reshuffles councils

Eight arrested in Morocco over alleged ties with IS

Syria regime seizes half of rebel parts of Aleppo

Europol warns of changing IS tactics

Palestinian contenders for Fatah posts set to declare

Protests erupt in Istanbul over ‘Aleppo massacre’

Aleppo family reunited after war kept them apart for months

Syria rebels put up fight for key Aleppo district

Obama unlikely to act on Israel-Palestine before leaving office

UN says torture 'widespread' after Turkey coup

International push aims to protect endangered heritage

Journalist's body found shot in Iraq’s Kurdish region

Iran urges Kenya to release two of its citizens

Morocco business diplomacy at heart of strategy to rejoin African Union

Turkish prosecutor calls for drop of Gaza ship charges against Israelis

Iran preparing ‘appropriate’ response to US sanctions renewal

Saudi government detects fresh hacking attempts

Qarawiyyin library holds written wonders

Putin getting admirers from US to Europe to Syria

Congress approves Iran sanctions extension

Staggering casualty toll in Mosul offensive

Pentagon says IS jihadists making 'last stand' in Sirte

Iraq faces post-IS problem in Shiite militias

Turkey detains business executive for alleged Gulen links

Putin says Russia not looking for enemies

Tunisia sentences protesters to 14 years in jail

Saudi increases jail term for rights activist to 11 years

Misery deepens for Mosul refugees with heavy rain

Turkish parliament to vote on bill expanding Erdogan’s power

UN envoy to Yemen, President meet in new peace bid

Syrian Grand Mufti rejects terrorism claims

Qatar blocks popular news website

Desperate civilians brave Aleppo front line

OPEC spares Iran oil production cuts