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Abbas Arrives in US, Prepares UN Speech Calling for State Based on 1967 Borders | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. (AP)

Ramallah – Palestinian presidential spokesman Nabil Abu Rudainah said President Mahmoud Abbas’ speech before the United Nations General Assembly later this week will be extremely important.

Abu Rudainah said Abbas will emphasize the need for a two-state solution for Palestine and Israel, based on the 1967 borders and with East Jerusalem as the capital of the independent state of Palestine.

He reiterated the position of the leadership that there should be no “temporary [Palestinian] state nor a state in the Gaza Strip without the West Bank and Jerusalem.”

The Palestinian leadership will only accept an “independent and sovereign state based on the 1967 borders,” he added.

Abbas arrived Sunday in New York to take part in the proceedings of the 72nd session of the UN General Assembly.

He is expected to deliver his speech on Wednesday and meet US President Donald Trump and a number of world leaders and heads of delegations joining the session.

Abbas’s trip comes amid continued efforts by the United States to resume stalled Israel-Palestinian peace talks.

Trump expressed new hope over a potential peace deal between the Israelis and Palestinians during a meeting with Jewish leaders Friday on the occasion of the Jewish new year.

He said that the new year “offers a new opportunity to seek peace.”

He added that he was “very hopeful that we will see significant progress before the end of the year,”

Trump said that his team, which includes Jared Kushner, David Friedman and Jason Greenblatt are working hard to reach a peace agreement, “something that actually could happen.”

Abu Rudainah said: “We hope so. The promises of the US president are important, and we are waiting to translate them on the ground. If this can be achieved, it will be a turning point in the Middle East and for peace in many parts of this world.”

Abbas is not scheduled to meet Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu, who will meet Trump on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly and deliver a speech a day before Abbas.