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Report says Jordanian king snubs Netanyahu

King Abdullah of Jordan speaks at the 65th United Nations General Assembly Sept. 23, 2010. UPI/John Angelillo
King Abdullah of Jordan speaks at the 65th United Nations General Assembly Sept. 23, 2010. UPI/John Angelillo | License Photo

JERUSALEM, Jan. 10 (UPI) -- Jordan's King Abdullah reportedly refused to meet Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyau in person due to the stalemate in Mideast peace negotiations.

Jordanian officials failed to respond to a request from Netanyahu to set up a meeting with the king, saying they would have to check his schedule, a source in Jerusalem told Haaretz in a report Monday.

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The Jordanian response was polite but evasive, insinuating there is no reason for such a meeting to take place because of the stalemate in peace talks with the Palestinians, the newspaper said.

Last week, Netanyahu dispatched National Security Adviser Uzi Arad to Amman to convey his request. Arad met with the chief of Abdullah's palace, Nasser Lawzi, and Jordanian Foreign Minister Nasser Jawdeh.

Arad briefed them on Netanyahu's recent meeting with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and asked to arrange a similar meeting with Abdullah, the newspaper said.

He also asked the Jordanians to pressure Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to return to the negotiating table, the report said.

An Arab diplomat told Haaretz the Jordanians were disappointed with Arad's visit and that he told them "nothing new."

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Following his meeting with Mubarak in Sharm el-Sheik last week, Netanyahu discussed the meeting and latest developments in a telephone conversation with Abdullah. The Jordanian monarch pressed Netanyahu to focus on core issues and urged him to move toward reaching a two-state solution with the Palestinians.

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