The quadrilateral meeting at Aqaba, intended to ““kick off implementation”” of the road map, was attended by King Abdallah, Prime Minister Abbas, Prime Minister Sharon, and President Bush. All four leaders made statements at the end of the meeting, but only those by Abbas and Sharon are reproduced below. President Bush's statement was noteworthy for its mention of Israel as a ““vibrant Jewish state”” (““America is strongly committed and I am strongly committed to Israel's security as a vibrant Jewish state””) and of Palestinian ““hopes”” for a ““viable”” state, and for reiterating that the Arab states ““have promised to cut off assistance and the flow of money and weapons to terrorists groups and to help Prime Minister Abbas rid Palestinian areas of terrorism.”” The statements by Abbas and Sharon were drafted with U.S. officials prior to the meeting. Though Abbas did not comply with the Israeli demand of Palestinian acknowledgment of Israel as a ““Jewish state,”” his speech provoked indignation in the occupied territories for its reference to ““the suffering of the Jews”” without mention of Palestinian suffering, its reiterated call for ending the ““armed intifada,”” and its ““renunciation”” of terrorism. Sharon resisted U.S. suggestions to refer to ““settlements,”” but did mention ““unauthorized outposts.”” In reference to Sharon's mention of ““territorial contiguity”” for a ““viable”” Palestinian state, a spokesman indicated that the contiguity would be ensured by ““bridges and tunnels.”” The text of the statements, transcribed by eMediaMill- Works and carried by the Associated Press, was posted on the Washington Post's Website.

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