Abbas calls on US to ‘impose’ a solution to Middle-East conflict


Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas today called on the US to “impose” a solution to the Middle-East conflict.

Abbas made a direct plea to president Obama to ensure Palestinians were given an independent state.

He also rejected the idea of a state with “temporary borders”, reportedly being offered Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

The Obama administration are pushing for a firm peace deal between the Israelis and Palestinians and have sent the president’s middle-east envoy George Mitchell to the region to try to bring the two leaders back to the table.

Abbas’s comments came after talks with Mitchell in the West Bank city of Ramallah.

Speaking to members of his Fatah party he said: “Mr President and members of the American administration, since you believe in this [an independent Palestinian state], it is your duty to take steps toward a solution and to impose this solution.”

Middle-eastern peace talks have stalled as a result of Israeli construction projects taking place in occupied land the Palestinians want for their state.

Netanyahu, has refused to halt the projects despite opposition from the US, who have hardened their line with Israel in recent months.

The construction of 1,600 homes in East Jerusalem, which has been earmarked by the Palestinians as a future capital city, was announced while US vice president Joe Biden was visiting to launch negotiations.

Obama has now requested a series of, as-yet, undisclosed “confidence building” measures from Netanyahu to re-start the talks.

Mitchell met with the prime minister on Friday and will meet with him again on Sunday, before reporting back to to the US president.

Netanyahu reaffirmed his position on the construction projects in a television interview before the meeting, saying there would be “no freeze in Jerusalem”.

However he is believed to be offering a number of other concessions including easing the blockade on Gaza and releasing Palestinian prisoners. Timesonline