King of Jordan arrives in Ramallah for talks with Abbas

AFP , Monday 21 Nov 2011

King Abdullah's surprise visit to Fatah's Abbas in the West Bank is the first in a decade, coming just ahead of a Cairo meeting to cement the power-sharing plan with Hamas

Jordan's King Abdullah II on Monday landed in the West Bank city of Ramallah for talks with Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas in his first visit in more than a decade.

His helicopter was greeted by a large official delegation as it touched down inside the presidential compound, the Muqataa, an AFP correspondent said.

Abdullah embraced Abbas and then greeted senior members of the Palestinian leadership in the West Bank, including Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, as well as security and religious officials.

It comes shortly before the Palestinian leader is due to fly to Cairo to cement a reconciliation agreement between his Fatah party and the Islamist Hamas movement.

Implementation of the deal, signed in May, has stalled over plans for an interim government of independents to pave the way for elections within a year.

Abbas has reportedly sought to keep Fayyad at the head of the new government, over objections from Hamas.

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