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Abbas in Paris Pushing French Peace Initiative; Met with Kerry

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas arrived in Paris on Saturday for a day of meetings that include the French foreign minister and American secretary of state. His primary mission, according to PA sources, was to support the French peace initiative. Dismissed by Israel, the French plan pivots around an international peace conference to be held in Paris before the end of the year with an eye toward pushing the Arab Peace Initiative, the plan created by the Saudis in 2002. In addition to containing terms considered to be red-lines in Jerusalem, the backers of the plan have attached the condition that it be accepted with no revisions – a term Abbas is underscoring in his talks with international diplomats. Abbas was reportedly adamant in his talks that any peace plan much contain specific dates and milestones for achievements. He is also demanding that talks and timetable be under international supervision. The State Department was less specific in describing the Kerry-Abbas agenda, spokesman John Kirby saying only that the purpose was to “discuss prospects toward [creating] conditions for a two-state solution.”