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News Brief

May 8, 2002
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President Bush said CIA Director George Tenet will return to the Middle East to help build a “unified security force” in the Palestinian territories. Bush met with Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in the Oval Office on Tuesday. Asked whether Israel should negotiate with Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat, Bush said, “I’m never going to tell my friend the prime minister what to do.” Bush also said he believes the Palestinians should develop a legal constitution. Sharon said it was premature to discuss a Palestinian state until the Palestinian Authority had undertaken serious reforms, and Bush said he hoped Arab states would work on reforming the Palestinian leadership “as soon as possible.”

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