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Abbas, Kerry meet in Jordan to discuss latest developments

Feb. 21, 2016 5:07 P.M. (Updated: Feb. 22, 2016 2:24 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) -- Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas met on Sunday with United States Secretary of State John Kerry in the Jordanian capital of Amman, according to official Palestinian news agency Wafa.

Wafa reported that Abbas called on Kerry to pressure Israel to release hunger striking Palestinian journalist Muhammad al-Qiq and to return the remains of Palestinians held by Israeli authorities after being shot dead during the latest wave of upheaval

Abbas spokesman Nabil Abu Rdeina said the Palestinian president also spoke with Kerry about his ongoing efforts to organize international powers to come together for a peace conference and in calling or the UN Security Council to condemn illegal Israeli settlement expansion, the statement added.

Rdeina also said Abbas updated Kerry on the latest initiatives for a Palestinian unity government with Hamas, after delegations from the Palestinian Authority and Hamas met in Doha earlier this month.

Rdeina added that Kerry assured Abbas the United States would exert enough efforts to insure the viability of a two-state solution, so as to maintain security and stability in the region.

Israeli media reported that Kerry had no plans of meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during his Middle East trip.

Netanyahu met with Kerry and US Vice President Joe Biden last month on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
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