Special report: Mideast peace conference
GAZA, Dec. 9 (Xinhua) -- A senior Palestinian official expressed hope on Sunday that an upcoming visit of U.S. President George W. Bush to the Middle East would push Israel to implement the roadmap plan.
Palestinian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Information Riyad al-Malki said he hoped Bush's visit to Israel and the West Bank "would contribute in urging Israel to commit itself to implementing the roadmap plan, mainly freezing settlements and removing checkpoints in the West Bank."
The White House announced last week that President Bush will visit the Middle East in early January, trying to seek a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians before he steps down.
Al-Malki said Bush's visit "means that the United States decided to closely follow up what had been agreed upon in Annapolis," expecting it to create new political and economical horizons in the peace process.
At the international conference on Mideast peace held in Annapolis, Maryland on Nov. 27, both the Palestinian and Israeli sides had vowed to implement the U.S.-brokered roadmap plan.
The roadmap plan, known for its vision of two-state solution, was declared in 2002 by Bush who called for creating a viable and democratic Palestinian statehood alongside Israel which should be secured.