Aide to Abbas confirms he won't meet with Pence

Aide to Abbas confirms he won't meet with Pence
Sat Dec 9, 2017 13:51:40

A senior official has confirmed that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will not meet with U.S. Vice President Mike Pence in the West Bank this month because of U.S. recognition of contested "Jerusalem" (al-Quds) as Israel's capital.

(AP) -- President Donald Trump's recent decision breaks with long-standing U.S. policy. Israel says it won't relinquish any part of the city, while the Palestinians want the Israeli-annexed eastern sector as their future capital.

Under international consensus, the city's fate is to be determined in negotiations.

Abbas' diplomatic adviser, Majdi Khaldi, said Saturday that Abbas won't meet Pence "because the U.S. has crossed red lines" on al-Quds.

Abbas had viewed close ties with Washington as strategically important because of the U.S. role as Mideast broker. The snub of Pence signaled a sharp deterioration in relations.

(Photo: Palestinian protesters look at teargas fired by Israeli soldiers during clashes on the Israeli border following a protest against U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to recognize al-Quds as the capital of Israel, east of Gaza City, Friday, Dec. 8, 2017. AP/Adel Hana)


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