Acting Palestinian Authority Chief Mahmoud Abbas has criticized the US administration for changing its stance on Israel’s settlement activity.
In an interview with the German daily Der Spiegel, Mahmoud Abbas said President Barack Obama has adopted a different stance from what he promised at the beginning of his term last year.
"His Middle East envoy, George Mitchell, kept coming to us and promised to urge the Israelis to stop settlement construction completely," he said.
"The American government suddenly backed away from this position in September," he added.
Abbas told the daily that the Palestinians expect Obama to "convince the Israelis to announce a complete freeze on construction in the West Bank and East Jerusalem for a few months."
"These are not preconditions, but the first stages in realizing the Road Map and they should have been taken long ago" he added.
The Palestinians have repeatedly called for a clear framework for the talks and a timetable for the establishment of an independent Palestinian state in the West Bank and East Jerusalem Al-Quds, which was occupied by Israel in 1967.
Tel Aviv however has failed to fulfill its commitments to stop settlement work.