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Bush Meets With PA President Mahmoud Abbas


The White House, Oval Office
Washington, DC
Released by the White House, Office of the Press Secretary

President Bush Meets with President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority


PRESIDENT BUSH: Mr. President, welcome.

PRESIDENT ABBAS: Thank you.

PRESIDENT BUSH: It's good to have you back here in the Oval Office. Thank you for coming, and thank you for working hard to implement a vision for a Palestinian state.

We want to help you. We want there to be peace. We want the people in the Palestinian Territories to have hope. And we thank you for your willingness to sit down with Israel to negotiate the settlement.

The United States cannot impose our vision, but we can help facilitate. And the process will begin tonight at the State Department, and then on to Annapolis tomorrow. And I want to thank you for coming. Wish you all the very best.

PRESIDENT ABBAS: (As translated.) I am delighted to have the opportunity to meet with President Bush after his invitation and this historic initiative that he launched to convene the Annapolis Conference. We have a great deal of hope that this conference will produce a permanent status negotiations, expanded negotiations, over all permanent status issues that would lead to a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinian people, an agreement to secure security and stability.

President Bush's initiative is a great initiative. We will continue to rely on his support and the support of the United States and his administration in order to achieve the intended objective. Thank you.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Thank you, sir.

END 1:14 P.M. EST

ENDS

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