French president arrives for private visit with Abdullah II

Sarkozy's office: Talks to focus on ME, acceleration of Palestinian-Israeli peace negotiations, bilateral relations between Jordan and France.

Nicolas Sarkozy 298.88 (photo credit: AP [file])
Nicolas Sarkozy 298.88
(photo credit: AP [file])
French President Nicolas Sarkozy arrived Friday in the Red Sea resort of Aqaba for talks with Jordan's King Abdullah II, a Royal Palace statement said. Sarkozy's office in Paris said his weekend trip to Jordan was a private one but that it also came on Abdullah's invitation. The statement said the talks between Abdullah and Sarkozy will focus on the situation in the Middle East and ways to push forward the Palestinian-Israeli peace negotiations and the bilateral relations between Jordan and France. Sarkozy will be staying at Abdullah's Red Sea residence. It was not clear whether the French leader is accompanied on the trip by his new companion, former model and singer Carla Bruni. Sarkozy's visit to Jordan is his second to the region in 10 days. Last week, Sarkozy visited Egypt's leading tourist destinations, Luxor and Sharm el-Sheik, in the company of Bruni. On the conclusion of his end-of-the-year Egyptian holiday, Sarkozy also held talks with President Hosni Mubarak in Cairo. Sarkozy and Bruni first surfaced as a couple in early December in French media on a visit to Disneyland Paris, two months after the French president's divorce from his wife of 11 years, Cecilia.