Benny Gantz meets with PA President Abbas ahead of Biden visit

The meeting was held in "a good spirit and in a positive atmosphere," according to Defense Minister Benny Gantz's office.

 PA President Mahmoud Abbas, Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz (photo credit: SPUTNIK/EVGENY BIYATOV/KREMLIN VIA REUTERS, YONATAN SINDEL/FLASH90)
PA President Mahmoud Abbas, Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz
(photo credit: SPUTNIK/EVGENY BIYATOV/KREMLIN VIA REUTERS, YONATAN SINDEL/FLASH90)

Defense Minister Benny Gantz met with Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas at the president's office in Ramallah on Thursday night, ahead of a planned visit by US President Joe Biden to the region later this month.

The meeting was also held as Muslims in the Palestinian territories and around the world prepare to mark Eid al-Adha over the weekend.

The two held the meeting to conduct civil and security coordination ahead of Biden's visit and to discuss security and civil challenges in the region. The meeting was held in "a good spirit and in a positive atmosphere," according to Gantz's office.

Gantz updated Abbas on the "complexity" of the coming period in Israel and the two agreed to continue close security coordination and to avoid measures that would "harm stability."

The defense minister wished Abbas and the entire Palestinian people an Eid al-Adha Mubarak.

MUSLIMS PRAY as they mark the holiday of Eid al-Adha in the compound known to Muslims as Noble Sanctuary and to Jews as the Temple Mount, in July.  (credit: AMMAR AWAD/REUTERS)MUSLIMS PRAY as they mark the holiday of Eid al-Adha in the compound known to Muslims as Noble Sanctuary and to Jews as the Temple Mount, in July. (credit: AMMAR AWAD/REUTERS)

According to the Palestinian WAFA news, Abbas "stressed the importance of creating a political horizon, respecting signed agreements, and stopping the procedures and practices that lead to the deterioration of the situation."

The Palestinian president stressed the need to "prepare the atmosphere" before Biden's visit.

Gantz last met in person with Abbas in late December at his home in Rosh Ha'ayin, although the two held a phone call in April as well.