Hussein Promises French Leader He’ll Keep Peace Process Moving

Jordan’s King Hussein told French President Francois Mitterrand here Monday that he will do whatever he can to keep the peace process moving.

Hussein, who stopped in Paris for a meeting with the French president, left this afternoon for Washington, where he is due to confer with President Bush on Wednesday.

According to French and Jordanian sources, the two leaders agreed that the main priority is to keep the peace process going and to avoid a continuation of the status quo.

Both reportedly agreed that Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir’s plan for elections in the West Bank and Gaza Strip should be explored thoroughly.

Hussein was earlier reported to favor such elections, on the condition that they be held under international supervision and be followed by an international peace conference.

Hussein and Mitterrand reviewed the Middle East situation in light of the intense fighting in Lebanon and the U.S. administration’s current round of diplomacy with the leaders of Israel and a number of Arab countries.

Mitterrand is also due to confer with Bush and Secretary of State James Baker next month after his scheduled meeting here with Palestine Liberation Organization leader Yasir Arafat.

Hussein is accompanied on his trip to Washington by Jordanian Prime Minister Zaid Rifai and Foreign Minister Marwan el-Kassem.

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