Abbas: No Progress in Indirect Talks

The Palestinian Authority (PA) has denied a breakthrough in indirect negotiations with Israel, saying the US-brokered talks have been ineffective so far.

"In fact there is no progress in negotiations, and the situation is still as it was," dpa quoted acting PA Chief Mahmoud Abbas as saying during a stopover in Amman, responding to US reports which had earlier indicated a progress in the ongoing "proximity talks."

The Fatah-led government in Ramallah entered into the indirect talks in April despite strong opposition by rival Hamas movement, Islamic Jihad and even factions within the Palestine Liberation Orgazanization, warning the talks would lead to more Israeli crimes.

The negotiations, mediated by US special envoy to the Middle East George Mitchell, have been seriously affected by Israel’s unrelenting settlement expansions and its deadly attack on a Gaza-bound aid convoy on May 31.

Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday urged the Palestinians to move into direct talks with the regime.

But Abbas said that the Palestinian Authority had handed "a written full vision" to the US administration on unresolved issues including East al-Quds (Jerusalem), frontiers and security.

"If Netanyahu acknowledges that these issues are negotiable, this means that progress is being made and we will be moving to direct talks…But if we don’t get a reply until September, which represents the deadline set by the Arab follow-up committee, a new meeting (of Arab foreign ministers) will convene to decide the next step," he added.

Abbas also vowed not to give up East al-Quds, which the Palestinians have been demanding as the capital of their future independent Palestinian state.

Israel occupied East al-Quds during the six-day war in 1967 and later annexed it in a move never recognized by the international community.

(Press TV)

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