Press Release
Contact Information: Hussein Ibish
July 15, 2007 - 12:00am

Washington, D.C., July 16 – The American Task Force on Palestine (ATFP) today welcomed the speech by U.S. president George Bush in which he reiterated U.S. support for the establishment of a Palestinian state. Following his speech, President Bush and Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas spoke by telephone in a half hour conversation about U.S. steps meant to strengthen Palestinian moderates and the prospects for Israeli-Palestinian peace.

In his speech, President Bush called upon the Palestinian people to reclaim their future and work towards establishing a Palestinian state based upon the hopeful vision as represented by President Abbas and Prime Minister Fayyad. The President spelled out the financial, political/diplomatic and institution-building commitments of the U.S. towards the Palestinian people. These included the allocation of $190 million to Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, $80 million for the security services, and the building of Palestinian state institutions with the coordination of new Quartet Mideast envoy Tony Blair. The president also outlined Palestinian responsibilities including fighting corruption, ending attacks against Israel and establishing the rule of law; and Israeli responsibilities including releasing Palestinian tax revenues, removing outposts, ending settlement expansion and ending the occupation of the West Bank. President Bush also announced the convening of an international conference later this year in order to focus international support for the Palestinians to be chaired by U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

Commenting on the presidential speech, ATFP president Dr. Ziad Asali said: “We welcome President Bush’s devotion of a entire speech on the issue of Palestine today and his support for measures aimed at restarting the peace process. Equally important will be the prompt and full implementation of the measures in support of the Palestinians and the beginning of a meaningful political process leading to statehood.” He added, “Both the Palestinian and Israeli peoples are yearning for peace, and peace can only be achieved through the establishment of a Palestinian state living alongside Israel in peace.”


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