Mubarak hosts Abbas for resuming Mideast peace talks

08:36, November 22, 2010      

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Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak (R) talks with his Palestinian counterpart Mahmud Abbas during their meeting in Cairo on November 21, 2010. (Xinhua/AFP)

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak held talks with visiting Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Sunday in an effort to resume the direct peace negotiations between the Palestinian and Israel.

The meeting came after a U.S. proposal to renew Middle East peace talks, which calls for a new 90-day settlement construction freeze in the West Bank.

The two leaders discussed the U.S. proposal and efforts by the Quartet, Europe and the international community to ensure the Israeli approval of the mandate of a settlement freeze, Egypt's official MENA news agency reported.

Meanwhile, they also talked about developments in the Palestinian territories and the efforts to realize an inter- Palestinian reconciliation.

The U.S. State Department said Friday they were ready to offer Israel written security guarantees if it would help to restart the stalled peace talks.

U.S. National Security Advisor Uzi Arad told Israeli media on Saturday that the United States has given Israel a written guarantee that it won't pressure the Jewish State any further if the country accepts the 90-day settlement freeze proposal.

Early October, the Palestinians halted the U.S.-sponsored direct talks with Israel, four weeks after it resumed in Washington. The decision was made after Israel refused to extend a ten-month moratorium over freezing settlement that ended on Sept. 26.

Abbas had talked with Arab League Secretary General Amr Moussa and Egyptian intelligence chief Omar Suleiman on Saturday about the latest situation of the peace process.

Moussa Saturday said in a press conference that the Arab Peace Initiative Committee will meet once the U.S. stance on the peace process is known.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday is expected to seek to convince members of the Israeli Knesset and deputy premiers from the Likud party on the matter. Jewish settlers gathered outside Israel's weekly cabinet meeting to protest against plans for a possible agreement on settlement freeze.

Source: Xinhua


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