Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said Monday he remained committed
to the peace process, but stressed he will not resume negotiations with Israel
unless it halted construction in the settlements and accepted the two-state
Abbas told visiting Assistant Secretary of State for Near
Eastern Affairs Jeffrey Feltman these were not Palestinian conditions but
obligations the Israeli government is required to fulfill under the terms of the
road map for peace in the Middle East.
Israel: PA dodging direct talks by negotiating via Quartet
Abbas said Israeli agreement to
fulfill its commitments would guarantee the resumption of the peace
Abbas also told the top US diplomat the Palestinians have
presented to the Quartet their “comprehensive views” on security and borders.
The Palestinians are also prepared to present their positions on all the final
status issues, Abbas was quoted as saying during the meeting.
Palestinian news agency Wafa reported Abbas affirmed his determination to
proceed with the Palestinian statehood bid at the UN.
“The purpose of the
Palestinian move is to consolidate the two-state solution and not to isolate or
delegitimize Israel,” Abbas told Feltman.
Abbas, according to Wafa, also
requested Washington’s assistance in putting pressure on Israel to release
Palestinians who were imprisoned before the signing of the Oslo Accords in
Abbas maintains that former prime minister Ehud Olmert had promised
him Israel would free Fatahaffiliated prisoners when and if Hamas inmates are
released in return for Gilad Schalit.