Bush to send security chief back to the Middle East

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The Independent Online

President Bush is dispatching the CIA director, George Tenet, back to the Middle East to try to establish a Palestinian security force capable of tackling terrorists.

"It's very important that we have a unified security force," Mr Bush said after a meeting with Ariel Sharon, Israel's Prime Minister. "We need to develop a state that can help bring help to Palestinian people and the Israelis."

Mr Bush met Mr Sharon but the two leaders failed to bridge many of their differences over how to move forward with a peace process.

News of the attack in Rishon Letzion came while the men were meeting. The President said: "I have told the Prime Minister that George Tenet will be going back to the region to try and discuss [the establishment] of a security force that will be transparent and accountable."

While Mr Sharon repeated his commitment to a peaceful solution, there was no evidence yesterday that he and Mr Bush had resolved many of their differences over the issues.