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Abbas tells Putin Palestinians want to negotiate with Israel

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, shown at the United Nations on Feb. 11, told Russian President Vladimir Putin he is ready to negotiate with Israel. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, shown at the United Nations on Feb. 11, told Russian President Vladimir Putin he is ready to negotiate with Israel. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

July 8 (UPI) -- Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas told Russian President Vladimir Putin in a phone call Wednesday Palestinians are ready to revive peace talks with Israel with help from other countries.

Abbas made the statements as Israel pushed forward with plans to annex the parts of the West Bank with the blessing of the Trump administration but against many in the international community. Trump's peace plan offers the creation of a Palestinian state but gives Israel land Palestinians claim as their own.

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"[Abbas] expressed the readiness of the State of Palestine to engage in negotiations on the basis of the international legal norms, under the auspices of the international quartet, and with the participation of other countries," a statement from Palestinian news agency WAFA said.

Last month, the Palestinian Authority threatened to declare a new Palestinian state based on lines that were drawn before the Six-Day Warin the 1960s if Israel goes through with plans to annex part of the West Bank.

"The Russian side has reaffirmed its principal stance in support of a just and long-term solution to the Palestine-Israel conflict in accordance with the existing international legal base," the Kremlin said in a message after the phone call between Putin and Abbas. "In this context, it has stressed the importance of strengthening inter-Palestinian unity."

The reference to inter-Palestinian unity pointed to resolving friction between Abbas's Fatah faction and Hamas.

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