Abbas Reluctant to Speak on Peace Talks

Since peace talks between Israel and the PLO resumed two months ago, President Mahmoud Abbas has maintained a no-comment policy on the political situation and potential compromises.

Abbas, who arrived in Washington Saturday, seemed more reluctant than usual to give any comments on the current situation, as he prefers to wait and avoid raising tensions through remarks to the media, according to a Ma’an reporter who accompanied the president.

He has met EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, and a meeting is scheduled to be held Monday between Palestinian officials and representatives of the Jewish community in the United States. Abbas, meanwhile, has abstained from giving positive or negative impressions.

The president was in the United States to join meetings of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

He met Monday morning with Palestinian journalists in Washington but he tried to avoid making either positive or negative comments on peace negotiations and their expected reflections on the UN meetings this year.

A Ma’an reporter present at the meeting said the president seemed more inclined to remain quiet until the end of the year “to see what Israel will do and what will not do, and based on that we will be able to take a better decision.”

Ma’an learned that US President Barack Obama will meet this year with three presidents — the Palestinian, Lebanese and Nigerian leaders. He will meet Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sept. 29 in Washington.

As for the interim prime minister Rami Hamdallah, meanwhile, he has been busy exerting efforts to convince donor countries to allocate urgent financial aid of $500 million to the Palestinian Authority.

(Ma’an – www.maannews.net)

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