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Abbas renews calls for stopping Jewish settlement
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19:05, July 21, 2009

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Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday renewed his conditions that peace talks with Israel won't resume unless the Jewish state stops settlement in the West Bank.

"We will go to the negotiations, but only when Israel be able to implement the obligations of the Road Map," Abbas told a news conference in Ramallah, referring to the U.S.-backed peace plan which sets a series of steps Israel and the Palestinians have to take to settle the conflict by having a Palestinian statehood alongside Israel.

"Dismantling the random settlement outposts are part of the demands in the Road Map and a freeze on all settlement activities is needed," Abbas said in response to an Israeli announcement to remove some settlers' random outposts in the West Bank.

According to Israeli media reports, Israeli hawkish Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu approved a plan to remove 23 outposts in the West Bank in a bid to soften relations with Washington which has been demanding Israel to stop the Jewish settlement since President Barack Obama's administration took office.

The number of settlements in the West Bank is nearly 220, most of them such as Maale Adumim, a home to 37,000 mostly-ideologues Jews.

The Palestinians plan to have their statehood in the Gaza Strip,the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Source: Xinhua

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