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.

 

US, UN call for immediate Gaza ceasefire

Fierce clashes kill at least 38 people in Benghazi

Iraq Shiite militia takes bloody revenge against ‘Islamic State’ in Baquba

Warning of Tripoli catastrophe after huge oil depot blaze

Iran flogs 5 people for eating in public during Ramadan

Air Algerie crash black boxes sent to France

Egypt army kills 14 jihadists in restive Sinai Peninsula

Calls for temporary Gaza ceasefire fall on deaf ears

Yemen army foils new Qaeda attempt to seize military posts

Investigators need ‘few days’ to probe cause of Algeria plane crash

Tunisia army suffers more losses in open war with terrorism

Jihadists advance amid escalation in Syria anti-regime offensive

Israel resumes devastating military assault on Gaza

Thousands face famine as food security situation worsens in Somalia

Death toll in Gaza climbs as fragile ceasefire reveals destruction

Egypt summons Turkey charge d'affaires for second time in one week

‘Islamic State’ jihadists dynamite Shiite shrine in Mosul

US evacuates embassy staff in Libya over ‘real risk’

Investigators begin 'difficult' probe into Air Algerie plane disaster

Armed men snatch Head of Baghdad Provincial Council

‘Islamic State’ beheads Syrian soldiers in Raqa

Kerry in Paris for talks on long-term Gaza truce

Hezbollah chief speaks out on Gaza

Two rival Islamic states in Syria power struggle

Crete protest against Syria chemicals destruction in Mediterranean

74 killed in IS assault on Syria regime territory

Iran confirms arrest of Washington Post correspondent

Somali 'Shebab commanders' killed in AU offensive

Paris: survivors of Air Algerie jet crash 'unlikely'

Jordan shots down drone near Syria border

Gaza civilian toll spiralling to above 800

UN urges Europe to tackle Mediterranean migrant crisis

From Israel with ‘virus’: Death threat letter reaches Palestinian mission in France

Ordeal of ‘apostasy’ woman ends with departure from Sudan

Another bloody day as Israel targets civilians in UN-run school

‘Islamic State’ launches multiple attacks on Syria army

Attack on Egypt army post bears fingerprints of foreign intelligence

Harassment of Christians escalates in Islamist-run Sudan

Air Algerie plane goes missing over Mali

Algeria plane with many French nationals on board vanishes over Mali

Iraqi protesters denounce treatment of minority Christians

Iraq elects Kurdish politician as federal president

Russia begins supplying military equipment to Iraq

Air Algerie plane contact lost over west Africa

South Sudan warring sides to resume peace talks