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Olmert wants Arab leaders to visit

Ehud Olmert called on Arab leaders to come to Israel to discuss a regional peace proposal. Addressing a conference in Jordan ahead of talks with King Abdullah II, the Israeli prime minister said Tuesday that he considers the Saudi peace initiative “interesting” but prefers that preconditions not be attached to regional rapprochement. “We heard about the Arab peace initiative and we say, come and present it to us. You want to talk to us about it, we are ready to sit down and talk about it carefully,” Olmert said. “We are ready to come and to invite” Arab leaders “without preconditions from us or their side,” Olmert said. Under the Saudi initiative, Israel would quit all lands captured in the Six-Day War and accept a solution to the Palestinian refugee problem in exchange for recognition from the Arab world. Israel has balked at some of the terms, especially any hint of a refugee “right of return,” which most Israelis consider demographic suicide.

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