'Merkel to advise Abbas against unilateral state push'

PA president scheduled to meet German chancellor next month; 'Der Spiegel' reports she will tell him not to seek UN statehood resolution.

By JPOST.COM STAFF
April 23, 2011 02:03
1 minute read.
Angela Merkel

Angela Merkel 521. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)

 
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German Chancellor Angela Merkel will meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on May 5, as European nations are considering unilateral recognition of a Palestinian State, AFP reported on Friday.

Although the German government declined to specify the meeting's agenda, German weekly Der Speigel said that Merkel would advise Abbas against lobbying the United Nations General Assembly to bypass direct Israel-Palestinian talks and recognize a Palestinian state with a UN resolution in September.

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Merkel voiced her government's opposition to a UN resolution creating an independent Palestinian state earlier this month following a meeting with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

"The Federal Republic of Germany is championing a two-state solution...Any kind of unilateral recognition does not promote this goal. This will be our position in September,” she said.

Abbas met with French President Nicolas Sarkozy and Prime Minister Francois Fillon on Thursday in Paris.

A source in the presidential office said Sarkozy had given Abbas his “clear support” for efforts leading to the creation of a Palestinian state.

“Recognition of the state of Palestine is one of the options which France is considering, with its European partners, in a bid to relaunch the peace process,” AFP quoted French Ambassador Gerard Araud as telling a UN Security Council debate on the Middle East.

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Benjamin Weinthal and Hilary Leila Krieger contributed to this report.

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