Palestine Ready for Peace Talks with Israel, Says Abbas

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has said that The Palestinian National Authority (PNA) is prepared for resumption of peace talks with Israel as soon as it implements the first article of the Road Map peace plan.

“We don’t put conditions, but Israel has to carry out the first article of the Road Map which it (Israel) accepted more than seven years ago,” Abbas told media persons in Ramallah.

The Palestian President mentioned the US-backed peace guidelines which made it obligatory for Israel to put all settlement activities in the Palestinian territories to a stop, to reopen PNA offices in East Jerusalem and to withdraw forces from inside areas controlled by Palestine.

Abbas said that obligations for Palestian under the Road Map, including dismantling armed groups in the West Bank, have all been implemented.

“We were asked to achieve security and stability. Thanks God that the security is available and the stability is existing,” he added.

He said that the PNA is prepared to resume the peace talks when Israel fulfills its obligations.

“If Israel refused to recognize the two- state solution or to meet its duty, what should we negotiate about? “ Abbas asked.

The negotiations between the PNA and Israelis were frozen when a right-wing government, led by hawkish Benjamin Netanyahu, took office in Israel in late March. Netanyahu has so far refused to adopt the Washington-backed two-state solution and to halt Jewish settlement in the West Bank.

US President Barack Obama is sending his envoy, George Mitchell, to the region in a bid to resume the peace negotiations.

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