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Bush Meets Arab Leaders in Egypt - 2003-06-03

U.S. President George W. Bush is meeting with moderate Arab leaders in the Egyptian seaside resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, where he is urging them to support a new U.S. backed Mideast peace plan.

The president is putting his prestige on the line, as he makes an all-out diplomatic effort to push the peace process forward. "I am the kind of person who when I say something I mean it," asserted Mr. Bush. "I mean that the world needs to have a Palestinian state that is free and at peace."

He spoke those words at the start of a formal meeting with the leaders of Egypt, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Jordan, as well as the new Palestinian Prime Minister, Mahmoud Abbas. The president stressed everyone has a responsibility to end the violence in the region.

"We must not allow a few people, a few killers - a few terrorists - to destroy the dreams and hopes of the many," said the American president.

Mr. Bush said Israel has responsibilities too. On Wednesday, the president plans to hold a three-way summit in Jordan with Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.