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Office of the Vice President

For Immediate Release July 25, 2000
                          ON THE CAMP DAVID TALKS

     I am disappointed that the Middle East peace talks in Camp David 

ended today without an agreement. At the same time, I am encouraged by the shared commitment of Prime Minister Barak and Chairman Arafat and their teams to continue to work toward an agreement that deals with all of the core final status issues.

When Prime Minister Barak and Chairman Arafat arrived at Camp David fourteen days ago, they knew they would be grappling with the most contentious issues confronting them, deeply rooted in their history, religion and politics. While the Israeli and Palestinian negotiating teams could not resolve all of these issues, they did achieve significant progress.

Although this round of negotiations has ended, the search for peace in the Middle East has not. The United States remains steadfast in its commitment to do everything in its power to assist the Israelis and Palestinians in bridging their differences and building a secure and lasting peace.

I welcome the commitment made by both sides to continue their efforts to conclude an agreement as soon as possible, and urge both sides to avoid taking unilateral actions that could jeopardize future talks.