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Royal Hashemite Court (Jordan)

King: Saudi Proposal is a New Beginning for Comprehensive Peace
Amman, 3 May 2002

His Majesty King Abdullah II Friday said Saudi Crown Prince`s land-for peace initiative, adopted at 27-28 March Beirut summit, constitutes a new beginning to achieve comprehensive peace, noting this plan needs to be further crystallized and to work out mechanisms with the US administration conducive to a timetable to implement it on the ground.

The King`s remarks came in an interview aired by British Broadcasting Corporation BBC, and added the Arab world backs the Saudi peace plan, affirming `the US plays a significant role in this regard`.

`If Palestinian bombing operations are deemed unacceptable, then what the Israeli army is doing against the Palestinian people is entirely unacceptable,` the Monarch noted, adding ` what we are trying to do this time in Washington is how to make the US role more effective to bring the Israeli and Palestinian sides to the negotiating table`.

HM later left London to hold extensive talks with US President George Bush and senior US officials on developments in the Palestinian territories and efforts to end Israel`s occupation of Palestinian self-rule towns.

The King noted the current diplomatic maneuvering aims to restore momentum to the Middle east peace process and to take the concrete steps to resume stalled Palestinian-Israeli peace negotiations.

`We have to concentrate on the political issues and to map out a framework enabling Palestinians to establish their independent state on their national soil , at a time Arab countries tell Israel we want you to be a part of our region and to achieve a just settlement,` the King pointed out.

Asked on the Iraqi issue, HM reiterated his stern warning that attacking Iraq will be a catastrophe for the region , affirming the dire need to adopt dialogue as a means to solve all pending matters peacefully.