Sunday, April 26
Latest News
  1. Clashes rage in Yemen as calls for peace talks grow
  2. EU AgenPolice arrest 26 across Europe in horsemeat scandal
  3. Home ministry: At least 114 killed in Nepal quake
  4. US: Russia failing to fully implement Ukraine ceasefire
  5. Kerry urges Yemen rebels and their allies to enter talks
  6. Ex-Yemen leader urges rebel allies to heed UN, pull back
  7. Iraq lacks DNA results to test body of 'Saddam deputy'
  8. Family: Syria's sacked political spy chief dead
  9. Officials: 14 Somali, Afghan immigrants killed by train in Macedonia
  10. UNICEF: At least 115 children killed in Yemen since March 26
  11. Athens stocks jump 4.4% on hopes of EU deal
  12. EU clears 19 genetically modified products
  13. Seismologists: Strong earthquake rattles New Zealand
  14. EU says progress 'not sufficient' for Greece debt deal
  15. World leaders join silence at ceremony marking Armenian genocide
  16. Jordan's crown prince at UN takes on militant 'dark world'
  17. US officials: Iranian ships turn back from Yemen
  18. Pakistan PM affirms Saudi 'solidarity' despite Yemen snub
  19. Three British plane spotters released in UAE
  20. UK regulator fines Deutsche Bank $340 mn over Libor

Abbas calls meeting to discuss Obama speech

May 19, 2011 9:35 A.M. (Updated: May 21, 2011 12:39 A.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma’an) -- President Mahmoud Abbas has called an urgent meeting following US President Barack Obama’s speech on the Middle East on Thursday, a PLO official said.

Saeb Erekat said Abbas appreciated Obama's efforts to reach a comprehensive solution to the conflict and his remarks on the right to self-determination and dignity.

Erekat said the Palestinians remained committed to all previous agreements with Israel, "hoping that the Israeli government will do the same, to give the peace process the chance it deserves."

But his tentative partners in the Islamist Hamas movement immediately called on Obama to take "concrete steps" not merely issue "slogans" in support of Palestinian independence and an end to Israeli occupation.

Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri, however, said Obama's speech amounted to "throwing dust in the eyes." Hamas, he said, calls on the Palestinian leadership not to hang its hopes on the speech and to coordinate with Palestinian factions to confront "US-Israeli arrogance."

In a key speech at the State Department in Washington, Obama called for a Palestinian state based on the 1967 borders but said a bid for UN recognition of a unilateral proclamation of statehood would not work.

The Hamas movement, which rules the Gaza Strip and this month signed a surprise unity agreement with Abbas's Fatah party, took a less cautious approach, responding immediately to Obama's address.

"What Obama needs to do is not to add slogans but to take concrete steps to protect the rights of the Palestinian people and the Arab nation," Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said.

AFP contributed to this report.
Ma'an News Agency
All rights reserved © 2005-2015