US President George W. Bush should not convene his planned Mideast peace conference next month if Israel and the Palestinians have not achieved an agreement in advance, a Palestinian negotiator said Thursday.
The negotiator, Saeb Erekat, was interviewed by Channel 10 TV. He said then-President Bill Clinton convened an Israeli-Palestinian summit in July 2000 that broke up without agreement, and violence erupted three months later. Lack of proper preparation for the summit is often blamed.
"Do you think President Bush will do what President Clinton did?" Erekat said. "I really doubt the Americans will issue the invitation if decisions are not made by (Palestinian Authority) President (Mahmoud) Abbas and (Prime Minister Ehud) Olmert."