Last Update 22:10
Friday, 06 December 2019

Netanyahu says he is waiting for a visit from Palestinian leader

AFP , Monday 4 Apr 2016
Abbas , Netanyahu
Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas (L) and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (Photo: Reuters)
Share/Bookmark
Views: 1303
Share/Bookmark
Views: 1303

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday said he was waiting for a visit from Mahmud Abbas, after the Palestinian president said he had already proposed such a meeting.

"A few days ago, on Israeli television, I heard president Abbas say that if I invite him to meet, he'll come," Netanyahu told reporters at a meeting with visiting Czech Foreign Minister Lubomir Zaoralek.

"I'm inviting him again," he said in English. "I've cleared my schedule this week. Any day he can come, I'll be here."

In an interview with commercial TV station Channel 2 on Thursday, Abbas said that he was ready to meet Netanyahu "any time."

US-backed peace talks between the Palestinians and Israel collapsed in April 2014 after nine months amid bitter recriminations and mutual blame.

The two men shook hands at a climate summit in Paris in November, but held no significant talks.

The last substantial and public meeting between them is thought to date back to 2010, though there have been unconfirmed reports of secret meetings since then.

Netanyahu on Monday said that if the two met he would discuss a wave of violence which has left 200 Palestinians and 28 Israelis dead since October.

"We have a lot of things to discuss, but the first item is ending the Palestinian campaign of incitement to murder Israelis," he said.

The recent surge in violence has raised concern of wider escalation, a decade after the last Palestinian uprising subsided.

Since the start of October, Israeli occupation forces have killed at least 200 Palestinians. Meanwhile, almost daily stabbings, shootings and car-ramming attacks by frustrated and unarmed Palestinians have killed 28 Israelis and a US citizen.

The current wave of protests by Palestinians and repression by Israeli occupation forces started in late July when toddler Ali Dawabsha was burned to death and three other Palestinians were severely injured after their house in the occupied West Bank was set on fire by Israeli settlers.

Settlement-building, racial discrimination, confiscation of identity cards, long queues at checkpoints, as well as daily clashes and the desecration of Al-Aqsa Mosque, describe Palestinians' daily suffering.

The anger of Palestinian residents of Jerusalem has increased in the last three years after the Israeli authorities allowed increasing numbers of Jewish settlers to storm the Al-Aqsa mosque.

The surge in violence has been fuelled by Palestinians' frustration over Israel's 48-year occupation of land they seek for an independent state, and the expansion of settlements in those territories which were captured by Israel in the 1967 Middle East war.

Palestinian leaders say a younger generation sees no hope for the future living under Israeli security restrictions and with a stifled economy. The latest round of U.S.-brokered peace talks collapsed in April 2014.

*The story has been edited by Ahram Online.

Short link:

 

Latest

© 2010 Ahram Online.