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Abbas meets with Turkmen president in Ashgabat

Nov. 14, 2016 11:09 P.M. (Updated: Nov. 15, 2016 12:16 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- In a joint news conference with the President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow in the country's capital Ashgabat, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas briefed Berdimuhamedow on the "difficult" conditions under which the Palestinian people live due to the Israeli occupation, according to Palestinian state-run news agency Wafa. 

The Israeli occupation, Abbas said, has been restricting "our people and their properties through Israel's settlement activities in the West Bank, including in East Jerusalem -- the capital of our Palestinian state."

Abbas added that the state of Israel "does not have the right to change (Jerusalem's) characteristics or identity, nor does it have the right to attack Muslim and Christian holy places in the city."

Abbas reiterated his readiness to make peace in accordance with legitimate international resolutions and the Arab Peace Initiative so that "the independent state of Palestine whose capital is East Jerusalem can live next to the state of Israel in peace and security as good neighbors."

The Palestinian president reaffirmed his support for an international peace conference that France has been seeking to organize. He also welcomed Russian President Vladimir Putin's proposal to arrange a trilateral meeting in Moscow.
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