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Obama: Middle East peace talks 'vital'

0 CommentsPrint E-mail CNTV, May 18, 2011
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US President Barack Obama has met with Jordan's King Abdullah the second at the start of a week of intense diplomacy. The two leaders exchanged views over the Middle East peace process, current unrest in North Africa and reforms in Jordan. Obama said it is more vital than ever for Israel and the Palestinians to restart negotiations on a peace deal.

President Barack Obama discussed the changes in the Middle East with Abdullah, whose country is a key US partner in looking for peace in the region.

Obama pledged to keep pressing for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Obama said, "We both share the view that despite the many changes, or perhaps because of the many changes that are taking place in the region, it is more vital than ever that Israelis and Palestinians find a way to get back to the table and begin negotiating a process whereby they can create two states that are living side-by-side in peace and security."

Abdullah praised Obama for his continued focus on the issue of Israeli and Palestinian peace.

Yet Obama gave no clear indication of how the US would bring about peace talks that have dried up since last September. Obama's special Middle East envoy George Mitchell resigned several days ago after a largely fruitless two-year bid for peace.

The president is to deliver a speech on the Middle East and US policy on Thursday. The next day, he will welcome Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to the White House.

On Jordan, Obama announced plans for economic aid to the country to help lay the conditions for economic growth and stability.

The unrest sweeping the Middle East and North Africa has not skipped Jordan, where weeks of protests led Abdullah to dismiss his Cabinet in February.


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