Abbas pledges to continue peace talks with Israel

January 23rd, 2012 - 9:02 am ICT by IANS  

Moscow, Jan 23 (IANS/RIA Novosti) Palestinian authorities are ready to continue peace talks with Israel, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas has said.

“We’ll continue the dialogue and we’ll continue the talks because we consider this to be the only way but if they fail, this will happen through Israel’s fault,” Abbas said Sunday after talks with Russia’s chief mufti (Islamic cleric) Ravil Gainutdin in Moscow.

Abbas arrived in Moscow Thursday for a six-day working visit. On Friday, he discussed Middle East settlement issues with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev.

Palestine is supporting the negotiation process as the only way to achieve peaceful settlement but considers Israel as the country responsible for the remaining problems between the two sides, Abbas said.

“Recently, Israeli settlers burnt down five mosques in West Bank,” Abbas said.

The Palestine-Israeli talks stalled in September 2010 over disagreements on Israeli settlement construction in the West Bank. Palestinians said they would not resume negotiations unless the construction stopped.

The Palestinians are seeking to create an independent state on the territories of West Bank, East Jerusalem, partially occupied by Israel, and the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip and want Israel to pull from the Palestinian territories occupied after the 1967 war.

Israel, however, has refused to return to the 1967 borders and is unwilling to raise the issue of Jerusalem, which it says is the indivisible capital of the Jewish state.

–IANS/RIA Novosti

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