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Abbas Presses for Two-State Solution, Kushner Provides No Clarity | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas meets with US presidential adviser Jared Kushner in the West Bank city of Ramallah on Aug. 24. (Palestinian Presidential Office/Reuters)

Ramallah- Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas reiterated his administration’s commitment to a two-state solution being the sole settlement for the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

Abbas told Senior Advisor to US President Jared Kushner in their two-and-half-hour meeting in Ramallah that peace can only be achieved through negotiating.

Kushner, special representative for international negotiations Jason Greenblatt and deputy national security advisor Dina Powell held talks with the PA president in Ramallah on Thursday after meeting with a number of Middle East leaders in the past several days.

However, Abbas stressed that negotiations should be based on the framework of a two-state solution and for illegal settlements to cease.

More so, Abbas said that Israeli transgressions must come to an end. Kushner heard out the Palestinian leader’s demands and postponed any responses for the next meeting they have.

Well-informed Palestinian sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that no significant breakthrough occurred at the Abbas-Kushner meeting.

Sources added that the American delegation listened and did not give away any viewpoints at the meeting.

Washington’s ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, was not present at the talks. The reason being the Palestinian Authority informed the US that he was not welcomed in Ramallah.

Americans again raised the issue of salaries paid by the Authority to prisoners and families of dead– Abbas told Kushner that he would not stop the reimbursements.

“We know that this delegation is working for peace, and we are working with it to achieve what President Trump has called a peace deal,” Abbas said at the beginning of the meeting, according to the Palestinian Authority news site Wafa. “We know that things are difficult and complicated, but there is nothing impossible with good efforts.”

The US team is attempting to find a way to kick-start the Israeli-Palestinian peace process in hopes of reaching what Trump has called the “ultimate deal.”

The Americans met with Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday, as well as with officials from Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan and Qatar during the trip.