Arab Summit Expected To Affirm Palestinian Rights
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who is in Jordan for the annual Arab League summit, said he expects the summit to deliver a “clear message to the world” about Palestinian rights. Abbas was speaking to reporters at the Arab summit which brings together leaders of 21 Arab countries. Reporters are complaining that they are not being allowed to enter the venue where the summit is being held on the shores of the Dead Sea and are only allowed to watch the proceedings on a live feed in their hotel a mile away. Abbas said he expects the summit to give full backing to Palestinian positions and to deliver a “clear message to the world about Palestinian rights.” The summit is expected to reaffirm the Arab Peace Initiative of 2002 which offers Israel diplomatic relations with dozens of Arab states in exchange for a complete Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank, Gaza Strip and east Jerusalem. Abbas also met with US President Trump’s international envoy Jason Greenblatt, who he also met earlier this month in Ramallah on prospects of reviving Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. Abbas has said he cannot negotiate with Israel while Israel continues to build more homes in Jewish settlements in the West Bank. Referring to settlements, Abbas said, “we are not waiting to see how things are being dealt with between them (the Americans) and the Israelis. Greenblatt also met with the Qatari and Egyptian foreign ministers at the summit. Meanwhile, the US announced that President Donald Trump will meet with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi at the White House on April 3. They will discuss how to defeat Islamic State militants and efforts to pursue peace and stability in the region, the White House said in a statement.