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Abbas: Palestinian Recognition of Israel not for Free | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas (2ndL); Minister for Tourism and Antiquities, Rula Maaya (R); chief negotiator Saeb Erekat (L) and Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev (2ndR) visit the Hisham’s Palace archaeological site on November 11, 2016 five kilometers north of the West Bank city of Jericho.

Ramallah- Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas stressed on Friday that the recognition of Israel “cannot be for free,” urging U.S. President-elect Donald Trump to implement the two-state solution to achieve peace.

The Palestinians are prepared to make peace with Israel and to implement the two-state solution according to decisions of international legitimacy and the Arab Peace Initiative, Abbas said following talks with visiting Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev.

“It is necessary for Israel to implement signed agreements with us. Our recognition of the state of Israel cannot be for free,” said Abbas in Jericho.

“As such, it is necessary for Israel to recognize the state of Palestine,” he added after the meeting according to WAFA, the official Palestinian news agency.

Abbas said Trump’s victory was “American business”.

“We followed the electoral process for over a year. What matters to us is what Mr. Trump will say once he enters the White House,” he said at the press conference.

“From a long time ago, we have been prepared for a direct dialogue with the Israeli side,” Abbas said.

He added, however, that for those talks to occur, the Palestinians would want Israel to accept that a two-state solution would be based on the pre-1967 lines.

As for Medvedev, he said Russia was willing to “immediately” open a dialogue between the two sides, whether under Russian or international mediation.

The U.S. has an effective role in the peace process, Medvedev told Abbas, but it has not been active with regard to the peace process.

He added that a continued stalemate in the peace process could lead to an escalation of tensions between Israelis and Palestinians.

On the sidelines of their meeting, Medvedev and Abbas oversaw the signature of six agreements aimed at consolidating cooperation in the economic, trade and culture fields.

The Russian official also attended the opening ceremony of a street in Jericho that had been funded for rehabilitation by his country and which Abbas announced will be called PM Medvedev street.