Abbas welcomes French proposal to hold international peace conference

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday welcomed the latest French initiative to convene an international peace summit to resume peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians.
Abbas, who has recently renewed his call for holding an international conference to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, said in a speech before the 26th African Union Summit in Ethiopia, “We welcome the French initiative and affirm that the status quo cannot continue. Our people will continue to use political and legal methods, through a peaceful and popular resistance, to achieve our national rights.”
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius announced on Friday that his country would try to renew diplomatic efforts between Israel and the Palestinians. He threatened that France would formally recognize a Palestinian state if the diplomatic efforts failed.
Fabius, who was speaking at a conference of French diplomats in Paris, said that France hopes that the international peace summit would be attended by Israelis and Palestinians, as well as other international actors like the US, EU and Arab countries.
“France will engage in the coming weeks in the preparation of an international conference bringing together the parties and their main partners to preserve and achieve the two-state solution,” Fabius said.
“If this attempt to achieve a negotiated solution reaches a dead end, we will take responsibility and recognize the Palestinian state.”
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