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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release June 15, 2000
                        REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT
                       IN PHOTO OPPORTUNITY WITH

                            The Oval Office

9:44 A.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT: Good morning, everyone. I'm delighted to have Chairman Arafat and his team back here again, and I'm looking forward to our conversation.

Q Do you fear that the Palestinian track is in danger of collapse, Mr. President?

THE PRESIDENT: No, I think it's an important moment and we just have to keep working on it.

Q Mr. President, are you going to put any pressure on the Palestinians concerning the third redeployment, which is supposed to happen on the 23rd of this month?

THE PRESIDENT: What I would like to do today is just get on to our business and our conversation, and not say very much. If we're going make peace, we're going to have to deal with the difficult issues, and the less we say now, the better, I think.

Q Mr. President, President Arafat was reported to be very upset with the way the Israelis are handling the negotiation. What is your assessment now, especially as time is running out before the deadline of September 13th?

THE PRESIDENT: I don't think I should characterize what's going on. I can only tell you that I want to finish the job and I'd like to see it finished on time.

END 9:46 A.M. EDT