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as Annapolis Middle East peace talks begin
New York, November 26, 2007 – Leaders of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA (NCC) are expressing encouragement and prayers for this week's Middle East peace talks in Annapolis, Maryland.
Writing to President Bush on Nov. 20, the NCC leaders reaffirmed the ecumenical group's longstanding support to "the goals and principles that are central to a lasting peace: an end to the Occupation, and a viable two-state solution; a renunciation of violence by all parties and an affirmation of the rights and security concerns of both Israelis and Palestinians; and a shared Jerusalem, which can one day be a symbol of the peace that is central to the faith of Christians, Jews, and Muslims."
The letter was written at the urging of the General Assembly of NCC and Church World Service, the NCC's partner humanitarian ministry.
General Assembly's annual gathering last Nov. 6-8, Dr. Fahed Abu-Akel,
former moderator of the Presbyterian Church (USA), proposed that such a letter
be sent to President Bush. The letter was signed on behalf of NCC's 35
member communions by the Rev. Michael Livingston, president of the NCC,
Clare Chapman, the acting general secretary of the NCC, and Dr. Anthony
Kireopoulos, NCC's associate general secretary for international affairs
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