Monday 03 August 2020

Russia offers to host Palestine-Israel, Hamas-Fatah meetings

Russia has officially proposed to organize a meeting between chief Palestinian and Israeli officials as part of wider efforts to resolve the conflict between the two sides.

As Reported byb Qods News Agency (Qodsna) The announcement was made by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Friday at a press conference held after a meeting with his Palestinian counterpart Riyad al-Maliki in Moscow.


"We see the desire of some external players to push the Palestinian problem into the background, depriving it of priority in regional affairs," Lavrov said.


To counter such attempts, the speediest restoration of Palestinian unity is of particular importance, he said.


He also expressed deep concern about the United States' stance on the Palestinian issue and its disregard for international resolutions.


During Friday's talks, Lavrov recalled that an intra-Palestinian dialogue was held in 2017, when participants discussed the possibility of repeating this practice in 2019 with the participation of all Palestinian factions, including Fatah and Hamas.


The Israelis do not rule out in principle the possibility of a meeting, but they are not yet ready to agree on a concrete date because of the absence of unity between the Palestinians, Lavrov said.



Rising support for Hamas in West Bank alarms Israel


Nearly two dozen Palestinians have been arrested in a stepped-up Israeli crackdown in the West Bank amid the perception

that support for Hamas is rising in the occupied territories. 


Maliki, in turn, said the Palestinian side is always ready to accept the Russian invitation to hold a meeting with Israelis, the Palestinian news agency Wafa reported.


He said Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas had accepted the initiative of Russian President Vladimir Putin to organize a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Russia, but the idea was rejected by the Israeli side. 


Maliki further called on Russia and the international community to pressure Israel to abide by its agreements with the Palestinians and comply with the relevant international resolutions.


The Palestinian minister also stressed the need for finding an international mechanism on the basis of international references and resolutions, leading to a settlement based on a two-state solution and the establishment of an independent

Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital.


The Palestinian leadership has been divided between Fatah and Hamas since 2006, when the latter scored a landslide victory in parliamentary elections in the Gaza Strip. Hamas has ever since been running the coastal enclave, while Fatah has been

based in the autonomous parts the Israeli-occupied West Bank.


Previous reconciliation attempts by the two sides to form a power-sharing unity government in Gaza and the West Bank have failed.

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