Abdullah urges immediate return to talks

Jordanian king calls for pan-Arab effort to press on Israel, Palestinians to support Saudi peace plan.

abdullah clean shaven 248.88 (photo credit: AP [file])
abdullah clean shaven 248.88
(photo credit: AP [file])
King Abdullah II of Jordan on Saturday called for wide-scale Arab efforts to renew negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians, and urged six Arab foreign ministers to commit to the two-state solution. Arab League chief Amr Moussa was also present at the weekend meeting held in Amman, which was called for the purpose of discussing Middle East peace following the formation of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's new government. Abdullah indicated his desire for a unified Arab effort to focus on the Saudi Peace Initiative, stressing the importance of not losing any more time in returning to the negotiating table and achieving a comprehensive solution. The initiative offers Israel recognition by all Arab countries in exchange for withdrawal from territory captured in 1967, the establishment of an independent Palestinian state with east Jerusalem as its capital and a "just solution" to the problem of Palestinian refugees. On Monday, Abdullah urged Israel to seize the opportunity or risk ongoing conflict in the region. "Israel must decide whether they want to observe this opportunity and become integrated in the region or whether they want to remain a fortress ... and keep the Middle East hostage in conflict," Abdullah said in Bucharest, during an official visit.