[Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: William J. Clinton (1994, Book II)]
[October 3, 1994]
[Pages 1678-1679]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office www.gpo.gov]

Remarks Welcoming Crown Prince Hassan of Jordan and Foreign Minister 
Shimon Peres of Israel
October 3, 1994

    Good morning. I'm happy to welcome back to the White House both 
Crown Prince Hassan and Foreign Minister Peres. We've had a productive 
session today. Jordan and Israel have taken further and very specific 
steps on the road to building a warm peace between their two nations.
    Almost exactly a year ago, Crown Prince Hassan and Foreign Minister 
Peres and I met to launch this trilateral process. What a difference a 
year makes. Since then, intensive bilateral and

[[Page 1679]]

trilateral negotiations culminated just 2 months ago in the historic 
meeting I hosted here between King Hussein and Prime Minister Rabin when 
they signed the Washington Declaration and put an end to war between 
their two nations.
    Since then, peace treaty negotiations have made considerable 
progress, and steps to implement the warm peace all three of our nations 
want have already been taken. Jordan and Israel have already opened a 
border crossing for citizens of other nations at Aqaba and Eilat. And 
trilateral discussions on tourism, communications, and economic 
development are proceeding.
    These discussions take place at a time when the economic and trade 
barriers of the past are dissolving before our eyes. It's heartening 
that the Gulf Cooperation Council states, led by Saudi Arabia, have now 
declared that they will no longer enforce the secondary and tertiary 
aspects of the economic boycott and will support a move in the Arab 
League to end the primary boycott of Israel. Promoting trade, 
development, and cooperation, rather than restraining and hindering 
normal economic relations, should be the hallmark of the new Middle 
East, and Jordan and Israel are leading the way.
    Today the Crown Prince and the Foreign Minister have reached 
agreement on a variety of issues that will help develop the Jordan Rift 
Valley, increase tourism, and assure future economic and social progress 
in the region. They have agreed to adopt basic principles to guide the 
future development of the Jordan Rift Valley, including projects dealing 
with the environment, water, energy, and tourism; to open a new northern 
border crossing for third-country nationals by October 15th; to 
establish a Red Sea marine peace park with assistance from the United 
States Government; to convene a conference on exploring constructing a 
canal between the Red Sea and the Dead Sea; to explore the establishment 
of a free trade zone in the Aqaba-Eilat area with a view to making it an 
economic hub for the northern peninsula of the Red Sea; to conduct, 
together with the United States, feasibility studies to expand the 
availability of water and to undertake joint financings of dams on the 
Yarmuk and Jordan Rivers to alleviate water shortages.
    That's quite a lot of work for them in this session. They are solid 
evidence that Jordan and Israel have not only ended their state of war 
but are following through on their commitment to cooperate with each 
other and negotiate as rapidly as possible a final peace treaty. Our 
goal remains a comprehensive peace between Israel and all its Arab 
neighbors. We're hopeful that a breakthrough can be achieved in the 
negotiations underway between Israel and Syria and Israel and Lebanon.
    In their ongoing talks, Israel and Jordan have looked to the 
trilateral discussions to help establish a comprehensive, lasting, and 
warm peace. The steps we announce today are the building blocks of a 
modern peace between these ancient lands. The United States is proud to 
be a partner and facilitator in this extraordinary endeavor.
    Crown Prince Hassan and Foreign Minister Peres, on behalf of the 
American people and personally, let me say that I salute your vision, 
your courage, and your persistence. This has been a relationship that 
has meant a great deal not only to me but to all of us in this country 
because of the incredible openness that you have displayed and the 
creativity you have brought to these negotiations. I am grateful that 
the United States has been able to play a role in this process, grateful 
for the opportunity that we have had to try to facilitate an 
extraordinary coming together between two extraordinary nations and very 
extraordinary leaders.

Note: The President spoke at 10:52 a.m. in the West Lobby at the White