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Obama and King Abdullah Press Conference

KING ABDULLAH: Thank you. Mr. President, again, thank you very much for this very kind welcome. We had a wonderful meeting just recently and I believe it was a meeting of the minds. We are both committed to bringing peace and stability to our part of the world. The President again reaffirming the need for a two-state solution and to move both parties to good negotiations as quickly as possible. He has the full support of my country and the Arab League on this issue. We believe that it is important for all of us to keep our eyes on the prize, and the prize is peace and stability finally for all the people of our region.

I’d also like to extend a warm thanks on behalf of many Arabs and Muslims who really had an outstanding response to the President’s outreach to the Muslim Arab world. It has gone on extremely well and really begins I believe a new page of mutual respect and mutual understanding between cultures. And I will — I continue to commit Jordan and myself to working with you, Mr. President. You have given us hope for a bright future for all of us. And America can’t be left by itself to do all the heavy lifting, so a group of countries, including Jordan, will do all we can to support you, Mr. President, in your endeavors. And hopefully under your tremendous leadership we will find some peace and stability in our region.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Thank you.

Q Mr. President, you’ve raised a lot of positive signals and interest in your commitment to peace and to a two-state solution. What other actions will you be taking to bring about peace, and when do you expect that action to happen? And how does the Arab Peace Initiative feature in such a plan?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, first of all, we have gone out of our way to complement the efforts of those Arab states that were involved in formulating the Arab Peace Initiative as a very constructive start. And obviously King Abdullah has taken great steps to ensure that that sustains itself, in terms of Arab support, even while we have seen a breakdown in negotiations. And that’s a significant achievement for which King Abdullah and others deserve credit. So we want to continue to encourage a commitment on the part of the Arab states to the peace process.

I have assigned a Special Envoy, George Mitchell, who is, you know, I think as good of a negotiator as there is, and somebody who through assiduous work was able to accomplish or help achieve peace in Northern Ireland. We want that same perseverance and sustained effort on this issue, and we’re going to be actively engaged.

We have obviously seen the Israeli government just form recently. Prime Minster Netanyahu will be visiting the United States. I expect to have meetings with him. I’ve had discussions with Palestinian counterparts as well as other Arab states around this issue.


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