93951
Abbas Meets Macron to Get Palestinian Stance Through to US
Abbas Meets Macron to Get Palestinian Stance Through to US

Abbas Meets Macron to Get Palestinian Stance Through to US

Abbas Meets Macron to Get Palestinian Stance Through to US

Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas met with French President Emmanuel Macron in Paris on Friday seeking French support to offset US President Donald Trump’s policy positions on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Speaking to reporters after a private meeting with Macron at the Elysee presidential palace, Abbas said he had conveyed the Palestinian position on the long-stalled Middle East peace process, which, he said, Macron would pass on to Trump, France24 reported.

“France is interested in attempting to reach an agreement, we are in touch with all the parties. I have submitted to President Macron everything that clarifies our point of view. He will be contacting President Trump to convey our messages to him,” said Abbas.

The Paris meeting follows a series of diplomatic blows from the Trump administration aimed at the Palestinian cause. The opening of the US Embassy in the city of Beit-ul-Moqaddas in May was followed by a US funding cut to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) and the shutting down of the PLO mission in Washington.

“The Trump administration has an overtly pro-Israeli stance and the Palestinians have not been in direct contact with the White House ever since Donald Trump recognized Beit-ul-Moqaddas as Israel’s capital,” explained France24’s Catherine Norris-Trent, reporting from the Elysee palace. “Now France is trying to keep the whole show on the road, to try and persuade the Palestinians not to disengage from the peace process even though it seems pretty much dead in the water.”

US National Security Adviser John Bolton said earlier this month that the Palestinian mission in Washington was being shut because of the PLO’s refusal to engage in negotiations, a claim denied by Abbas on Friday.

“The Israelis claim that the Palestinians refuse to negotiate. I issue a challenge to them to provide evidence of our refusal to negotiate,” Abbas said. “All refusals to negotiate have been on the Israeli side. We are prepared for negotiations, be they secret or public, be they led by the Quartet or western countries or Arab countries.”

The Middle East Quartet comprising the UN, US, the EU and Russia was formed in 2002 in a bid to find an agreement to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

  Lack of Vision, Objectivity

But the Trump administration’s position on the status of Beit-ul-Moqaddas, one of the key pillars of the peace process initiated by the 1991 Madrid conference, threw a spanner in the already stalled Middle East peace roadmap.

In an interview with France24 following Macron’s meeting with Abbas, Palestinian Authority Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki noted that Trump’s much-touted “deal of the century” lacked any vision or objectivity.

“Trump never really invited us to sit and talk to the Israelis in the first place. He never talked details about his ‘deal of the century.’ First of all, there is no invitation. Secondly there is no negotiation. Thirdly there is no deal of the century yet identified. So, to go to speak with the Israelis—on what basis?” asked a clearly frustrated Maliki.

Friday’s meeting, Maliki added, provided Abbas “a chance to explain to President Macron the realities on the ground, what the Israelis are doing to us in terms of settlements, what that means to the Palestinian state, to the contiguity of Palestinian territory.”

Following his Paris visit, Abbas travels to Ireland in a bid to secure a robust EU position on the Middle East crisis ahead of the UN General Assembly meeting next week.

Short URL : https://goo.gl/TXcEUk
  1. https://goo.gl/MB5zE8
  • https://goo.gl/znWVnS
  • https://goo.gl/NnuQWD
  • https://goo.gl/bkWDbG
  • https://goo.gl/ds3hW2

Add new comment

Read our comment policy before posting your viewpoints

Trending

Googleplus