Abbas Informs Putin of Palestinian Refusal of US Role in Peace

Abbas Informs Putin of Palestinian Refusal of US Role in Peace

Monday, 12 February, 2018 - 19:00
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas meets Russian President Vladimir Putin. (AFP file photo)
Asharq Al-Awsat
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas reiterated on Monday his rejection of the role of the United States in the Middle East peace process.

He told Russian President Vladimir Putin that he could no longer accept the US role in talks with Israel because of Washington’s behavior, the Interfax news agency reported.

"We state that from now on we refuse to cooperate in any form with the US in its status of a mediator, as we stand against its actions," Abbas told Putin at the start of talks in Moscow.

Abbas was quoted as saying he wanted an expanded new mediation mechanism to replace the Middle East Quartet.

"For instance, 'the quartet' plus some other countries like the model used to achieve the deal on Iran," Abbas said, referring to international talks about Tehran's nuclear program.

Abbas and his allies were left furious in December when US President Donald Trump reversed decades of US policy to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and set in motion the process of moving the US embassy from Tel Aviv.

Abbas had said at the time that the US had disqualified itself from the peace process.

Earlier on Monday, Putin said that he had spoken to Trump by telephone and discussed efforts to bridge differences between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, Russian news agencies reported.

He was reported to have made the comments at the start of his meeting with Abbas.

He was also cited as saying that the situation in the region was a long way from the one Moscow wanted to see.

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