Abdullah: Mideast running out of time

May 18, 2007 at 11:10 AM

PETRA, Jordan, May 18 (UPI) -- King Abdullah II of Jordan said time is running out to end the crisis in the Middle East, The Times of London reported Friday.

World leaders must try harder to establish peace in the Middle East or risk the conflict between Israel and the Arab and Muslim worlds continuing indefinitely, Abdullah said in an interview which the newspaper reported on its Web site.

The politics of the region make progress very difficult, the king said Friday at a World Economic Forum at which regional leaders gathered to debate the issues of the Middle East.

Abdullah predicted that creation of a Palestinian state becomes less likely every day because of the continued construction of Jewish settlements and the security wall in the West Bank, The Times reported. Rather than a state, the Palestinians would get "Swiss cheese" -- a territory riddled with holes, he told The Times.

"We need to take one step back because if this continues we may lose our final opportunity,'' Abdullah said.

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