Abbas calls emergency meeting over Obama address

PA president seeks urgent consultations with Arab leaders over address; Hamas spokesmen accuses Obama of "deception," favoritism to Israel.

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May 19, 2011 21:18
1 minute read.
PA President Abbas with Hamas PM Haniyeh

PA President Abbas with Hamas PM Haniyeh 311 (R). (photo credit: REUTERS/Suhaib Salem)

 
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Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday called an emergency meeting of the PA leadership to discuss US President Barack Obama’s speech on peace in the Middle East, an official in Ramallah said.

Abbas has also decided to hold urgent consultations with a number of Arab leaders on the speech, the official said.

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PLO Executive Committee member Saeb Erekat said that Abbas remained committed to fulfilling all Palestinian obligations in accordance with international agreements, especially the road-map plan and the 2002 Arab peace initiative.

Erekat said that the PA was hoping the Israeli government would fulfill its obligations “to give the peace process the chance it deserves.”

He added that Abbas appreciated Obama’s efforts to resume the peace talks between the Palestinians and Israel, and maintained hopes of reaching a solution on the core issues, according to an agreed timetable.

“President Abbas affirms his appreciation for President Obama’s declaration regarding people’s right to self-determination, freedom and dignity, as well as ensuring freedom of worship,” Erekat added. “The Palestinians need more than any other people such issues to get rid of occupation.”



Hamas, on the other hand, accused Obama of “deception” and bias in favor of Israel.

Hamas spokesman Ismail Radwan told Agence France-Press that his movement does not believe in US policies because they are biased in favor of Israel, and deny Palestinian rights.

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