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Abbas to ask France for recognition of Palestinian state

Sept. 15, 2014 10:13 A.M. (Updated: Sept. 17, 2014 11:44 A.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- President Mahmoud Abbas will ask his French counterpart Francois Hollande for official recognition of Palestine in an upcoming meeting this week, the Palestinian foreign minister said Sunday.

Riyad al-Maliki told Ma'an that Abbas is due to meet Hollande in Paris on Friday before arriving in New York.

Abbas will urge the French president to support plans to submit a draft resolution to the UN Security Council demanding that Israel withdraw from occupied Palestinian territories.

"The world is more convinced now than ever before that Israel has been thwarting international efforts by stealing Palestinian land to build settlements, and that has created a much better atmosphere for a positive international response to Palestinian demands," al-Maliki said.

"We are going there (UN Security Council) to say that it's time the world took a clear position towards occupation which should come to an end after things have reached an impasse."

Al-Maliki said the PLO are awaiting a response from the United States before UN General Assembly debates start on Sept. 24.

If the US rejects Abbas' plan, the PLO will submit a resolution to the UN Security Council demanding an end to Israeli occupation. The wording of the resolution will be in line with assurances conveyed to the PLO by John Kerry before the last round of failed negotiations.

"If the US vetoes the Palestinian draft resolution, that means they were not serious and are contradicting their own words," al-Maliki added.
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