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.

 

IS jihadists move closer than ever to central Damascus

A year on, recapture of Yazidi hub remains a distant prospect

EU leaders call for action to defend migrants’ 'dignity'

Palmyra temple appears ‘largely intact’ after ISIS blast

Egypt suspends muezzin over Facebook mention in prayer call

Pressure builds on Europe as refugee crisis exposes splits

Israel confirms jail for Druze ex-MP over visit to Syria

Egypt much delayed elections to start on October 17

Turkey to offer cash rewards for tips on ‘terrorists’

Yemen children's hospital on the verge of shutting down

In gruesome video, ISIS shows burning alive of Iraq Shiite fighters

Four years after famine, situation in Somalia remains alarming

IS blows up parts of famed Palmyra temple

Deadly fire at housing complex of Aramco in Saudi Arabia

In historic first, Saudi Arabia allows women to run in local elections

Israel repels protesters with tear gas at separation barrier in West Bank

ISIS brutality in Syria: Over 90 people executed in one month

Bashir to visit China despite international arrest warrant

Egypt summons British envoy in row over Al-Jazeera trial

Yemen war seeks to stop ‘Iran expansion’ in Arab region

Lebanon protesters to government: Meet our demands of face escalation

Calls for action on refugee crisis mount after Austrian tragedy

Kuwait lawmaker describes Iran as 'true enemy' of Gulf Arabs

Two French journalists charged with bid to blackmail Morocco King

Algeria detains former intelligence chief

Kurdish forces free seven Iraq villages from clasps of ISIS

Toll in Libya shipwreck tragedy rises to 111

Egypt court hands Al-Jazeera reporters three years in prison

UN to host new round of Libya peace talks next week

US names ‘First Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs’

Mounting death toll of security forces triggers questions in Turkey

Deadly terrorist blast rocks Karanah suburb in Bahrain

Brief truce between Syria regime and rebels collapses

Al-Qaeda lashes 10 in Yemen for blasphemy, alcohol

Turkey PM to form cabinet ahead of November polls

Iraq PM orders forces to prepare to open Green Zone

71 'Syrians' dead in Austria truck tragedy

UN conference on plight of minorities persecuted by IS

Spain judge accuses suspect of running IS Morocco network

Yemen army recruits 4,800 southern fighters

Israel to use agriculture to win friends in Africa

Syrian refugees desert Middle East for Europe

At least 76 die as boat sinks off Libya

UN pursues Syria chemical weapons probe

US says IS cyber jihadist killed in Syria strike