King Abdullah II Plans Working Visit to France
Jordan's King Abdullah II will visit France Monday for talks with President Jacques Chirac on an Egyptian-Jordanian initiative to end Israeli-Palestinian violence, a Jordanian official told AFP.
"The king will have lunch with President Chirac and will discuss with him the latest developments in the region including the Egyptian-Jordanian plan," the official said.
France backs the initiative proposed by Egypt and Jordan, the only two Arab countries which have peace treaties with Israel.
Jordan and Egypt are pushing a joint bid to quell the seven months of deadly violence between Israelis and Palestinians in an effort to help both sides resume peace negotiations from the point at which they left off in October.
The proposed plan entails a series of confidence-building measures, including a pullback of Israeli troops to their positions before the start of the fighting in September, a freeze on settlement construction and renewed security cooperation between the two sides.
On Tuesday Abdullah is due to leave Paris for a brief "private visit" to Austria before going on to Amman, the official said.
The Jordanian king went on a state visit to France in November 1999, nine months after he ascended the throne following the death of his father, King Hussein, in February 1999 – AMMAN (AFP)
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