Press Release
Contact Information: Hussein Ibish
July 28, 2003 - 12:00am

Washington DC, Jul. 28 -- The American Task Force on Palestine (ATFP) hosted Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmud Abbas, members of the Palestinian cabinet and the PLO envoy in Washington, at a breakfast today. The event was attended by over a hundred Palestinian, Arab and Muslim American leaders from all over the nation, as well as leading members of the Arab-American business and professional community.

ATFP hosted Prime Minister Abbas at the Ritz Carlton in Washington, DC. Prime Minister Abbas briefed the attendees on his talks with President Bush, Vice President Cheney, Secretary of State Powell, National Security Advisor Rice, and Congressional leaders. “We explained clearly the importance of addressing the issues of Palestinian prisoner releases, a complete Israeli settlement freeze, and Israel’s ‘Wall of Separation’ to President Bush and American leaders”, he said. Abbas also laid out his vision for a just and lasting solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, based on two states, Israel and Palestine living in peace. “The Palestinian side has accepted the Road Map without reservations,” Abbas said, adding that “we are committed to finding a peaceful solution to the conflict.” Abbas cautioned however that a future Palestinian state must be viable, independent and contiguous. “This could well be the last chance to achieve peace between Palestinians and Israelis, not just between governments but between our peoples. If we fail now, the results would be dire for both sides,” he said.

Abbas thanked the attendees for all their efforts on behalf of the Palestinian cause in the United States and urged all present to continue acting as ‘ambassadors of peace’ for the Palestinian people. Following his briefing, ATFP President Dr. Ziad Asali said: “We are gratified that the inaugural public event of ATFP is an historic visit by the Palestinian Prime Minister who was received so warmly in our nation’s capital.”


American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017