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Royal Hashemite Court (Jordan)

King Opens Talks with President Chirac
Amman, 20 October 2002

His Majesty King Abdullah II and French President Jacques Chirac held talks on Sunday focusing on ways to activate Palestinian-Israeli peace talks, the Iraqi crisis and on bilateral relations.

During the talks, attended by senior Jordanian officials and the delegation accompanying President Chirac, the two countries' standpoints were identical on the necessity to speed up negotiations between the Palestinians and Israelis according to the action plan put forward by the international Quartet Committee.

The two leaders noted the perilous situation in the Palestinian areas and the suffering of the Palestinian people as result of continued violence and Israel's siege.

King Abdullah appreciated the role of France and the EU in general to back the Middle East peace efforts. France with its international weight and influence was playing a key and prominent role in supporting peace efforts in the region, King Abdullah said.

King Abdullah and President Chirac stressed the necessity to put an end to violence in the Palestinian areas and to create the appropriate atmosphere to re-launch peace talks in accordance with Security Council resolutions 242, 338 and 1397 and the Arab peace initiative adopted at Beirut Arab summit. They also asserted that any settlement to conflict in the region should be a comprehensive one that includes the Syrian and Lebanese tracks.

On the Iraqi crisis the two leaders called for seeking a diplomatic solution to settle this issue and avert the region any potential conflict. They also stressed the importance of Iraq's unconditional implementation of the relevant Security Council resolutions to avoid the outbreak of war and its devastating results.

King Abdullah and President Chirac, who left Amman later on the day, underlined the necessity to further cement bilateral cooperation in political, economic and cultural spheres. King Abdullah expressed thanks to France for its assistance to Jordan referring to the French government's support to Jordan during negotiations with the Paris Club to reschedule part of Jordan foreign debts.