Fayad: No peace deal possible in 2008

Bush vows to devote final months in office to peace efforts, but doesn't give a time frame for deal.

abbas bush 224.88 (photo credit: AP)
abbas bush 224.88
(photo credit: AP)
Palestinian Prime Minister Salaam Fayad said Wednesday he believes his people won't reach a peace deal with Israel before the year-end target set by the US. In newspaper interviews on Wednesday, Fayad said he's "absolutely certain" the sides won't be able to reach a deal in time. Fayad joins a growing chorus of Israeli and Palestinian officials who have expressed doubt over the ambitious timeline. He said the best that could happen this year is international pressure on Israel to stop building Jewish settlements in the West Bank. The target date was set by US President George W. Bush during the Annapolis peace conference in November 2007. Meanwhile, Bush vowed that his final six months in office will be defined by diplomacy, including an intense effort to secure an agreement which would lead to the establishment of a Palestinian state. In an interview with the London Times published Wednesday, the president did not promise any timeframe for such an agreement, but said that his administration would "leave behind a series of structures that [would make it easier] for the next president."