Bush Reviews Middle East Policy

(White House) - President Bush told a press conference Tuesday: Syria and Iran's Support for Attacks Against U.S. in Iraq The U.S. was working closely with Syria and Iran "to let them know that we expect them to enforce borders, prevent people from coming across borders....We are mindful of the fact that some might want to come into Iraq to attack and to create conditions of fear and chaos." Support for Vanquishing Palestinian Terrorism as a Precondition to a Negotiated Settlement "My policy in the Middle East is pretty clear. We are for a two-state solution. We want there to be a Palestinian state living side-by-side with Israel. Now, in order to achieve a two-state solution there needs to be a focused effort by all concerned parties to fight off terror. There are terrorists in the Middle East willing to kill to make sure that a Palestinian state doesn't emerge. It's essential that there be a focused effort to fight off terror. Abu Mazen came here to the White House....He pledged a focused and concerted effort to fight terror....Unfortunately, he is no longer in power. He was eased out of power. And I do not see the same commitment to fight terror from the old guard. And, therefore, it's going to be very hard to move a peace process forward until there's a focused effort by all parties to assume their responsibilities." Criticism of Israel's Fence Route "You asked about the fence. I have said the fence is a problem to the extent that the fence is an opportunity to make it difficult for a Palestinian state to emerge. There is a difference between security and land acquisition....We want the conditions for a Palestinian state on the ground to be positive, that when the Palestinians finally get people that are willing to fight off terror, the ground must be right so that a state can emerge; a peaceful state....But the long-suffering Palestinian people need leadership that is willing to do what is necessary to enable a Palestinian state to come forth."

2003-10-29 00:00:00

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