OCTOBER 26, 1994

Salaam u-aleikum…

Peace be upon you, God’s peace the greeting with which Muslims and Arabs receive their guests, exchange amongst each other the greeting that has been taken to every part of the world over a long and cherished history and past.

It is with a sense of enormous pride, a sense of fulfilment, that I stand here before you today, together with President Clinton, Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, President Weizman, and all our distinguished colleagues and friends. An unusual day, a day like no other in terms of the hopes, in terms of the promise, and in terms of the determination. God willing, and with God’s blessing of us all. To remember this day as long as we live and for future generations Jordanians, Israelis, Arabs, Palestinians all children of Abraham; to remember it as a dawning of the new era of peace, mutual respect between us all, tolerance and the coming together of people of generations to come beyond this time to build and achieve what is worthy of them.

We will always cherish the memory and honor all those who have fallen over the years from amongst all of our peoples. I believe they are wish us on this occasion, and that this time, as we come together to ensure, God willing, that there will be no more death, no more misery, no more suspicion, no more fear, no more uncertainty of what each day might bring, as has been the case in the past.

Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and I had the honor of signing the Washington Declaration with President Clinton, our partner and our friend, and we took it upon us, Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and myself, to shepherd the process of negotiations to a successful conclusion. I believe that both of us share in this moment of achievement and pride and relief, for hopefully we have contributed towards a better future of our peoples for all times to come.

The Prime Minister of Israel and the Prime Minister of Jordan will shortly ratify the peace treaty between our two countries. This will be witnessed by President Clinton. In a matter of days, we will have completed in Jordan the passage of this peace treaty through the legislature. I, who have accompanied my colleagues throughout this process Prime Minister Majali since Madrid, my brother Crown Prince Hassan, and every Jordanian who has been involved and honored to be involved in this peace process fully support every word and every letter in this peace process between Jordan and Israel. I know it is supported by the overwhelming majority of our people, who have learned today of its passage through the Israeli Knesset by an overwhelming majority.

These are the moments in which we live, the past and the future. This great valley in which we stand will become the valley of peace. And one may come together to build it and to make it bloom, as never before. When we come to live next to each other, as never before, we will be doing so, Israelis and Jordanians, together, without the need for any to observe our actions or supervise our endeavors. This is peace with dignity, this is peace with commitment.

This is our gift to our peoples and the generations to come, that will herald the change in the quality of life of people. It will not be simply a piece of paper ratified by those responsible, blessed by the world. It will be real, as we open our hearts and minds to each other; as we discover a human face to everything that has happened and to each other. For all of us have suffered for far too long.

President Clinton, you have been our partner, you have been our friend, you have given us your support, together with the administration of the United States of America. You are at the helm during this historic moment. We will always remember the warmth of your welcome to us both in Washington, and the warmth of the welcome of the people of the United States of America with which they received our news and lauded our achievements. No one will ever forget this day, and in particular we will always remember the fact that you personally came to be with us here on this most happy of occasions, at the end of a chapter of darkness and the opening of a book of light. Ever proud of our friendship, God bless you and give you every future success.

Maybe the world needs some good examples of what should happen between people, and hopefully this might herald similar progress, not only on all the tracks here in this region, because we are all committed to a comprehensive peace we wish it, and hopefully it will be but throughout the world; the world that is the home of all of us, that in itself is so small, where so much needs to be addressed and met, for humanity and for the future.

Behind us here you see Eilat and Aqaba, the way we have lived over the years, in such close proximity unable to meet, to visit each other, to develop this beautiful part of the world. No more as we look into the future beyond this point, with determination, with hope, with commitment. We survived the hard times. Let our people beyond this point in time enjoy the good times.

I would like to thank all our friends, all our distinguished guests, who join us here today the representative of President Yeltsin, Foreign Minister Abrasha, distinguished foreign ministers, our Arab brethren from our greater Arab homeland, our guests from throughout the world, our friends. A very hearty welcome to all of you, Jordanians and Israelis alike at this very precious moment. God bless you.