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6/6/03 - ADVANCING THE ROAD MAP - 2003-06-06

In Egypt and Jordan, President George W. Bush met with Arab leaders, and with Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and the new Palestinian Prime Minister, Mahmoud Abbas. Mr. Bush described his vision for the Middle East:

“We see the potential for the birth of a new and Palestinian state. We see the potential for broader peace among the peoples of this region. Achieving these goals will require courage and moral vision on every side, from every leader. America is committed, and I am committed, to helping all the parties to reach the hard and heroic decisions that will lead to peace.”

The U.S. and other nations have offered a road map calling for two states, Israel and Palestine, living side-by-side in peace. President Bush has called on Israel to respect the rights of Palestinians and stop building settlements in disputed areas. And he has "urged the Palestinian people to embrace new leaders who stand for reform, democracy, and for fighting terror."

As President Bush put it, “If all sides fulfill their obligations, we can make steady progress on the road toward Palestinian statehood, a secure Israel, and a just and comprehensive peace”:

“We seek true peace, not just a pause between more wars and intifadas, but a permanent reconciliation among the peoples of the Middle East.”

All progress towards peace between Israel and the Palestinians requires the rejection of terror. Terror threatens the U.S. Terror threatens Arab states. Terror threatens the state of Israel. Terror threatens the emergence of a Palestinian state. As President Bush said, “Terror must be opposed and it must be defeated.”