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PA: Expect a "Hot Autumn" for the Peace Process

By: Ma’an News Agency

30.07.09

Bethlehem – Ma’an – US efforts to restart the Middle East peace process may begin to bear fruit in the coming weeks, Palestinian presidential spokesperson Nabil Abu Rudeineh said on Wednesday.

Abu Rudeineh said in a statement published by the Palestinian official news agency WAFA that the recent visit to the region by US Middle East envoy George Mitchell was highly important because he heard from “all sides.”

Mitchell met this week with top Palestinian and Israeli officials as a part of Washington’s ongoing quest to resurrect peace negotiations. Mitchell failed to convince Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to accept a moratorium on construction in Israel’s settlements on occupied Palestinian land.

“The US administration will use the data which Mitchell collected to form their vision for the peace plan” in the future, he was quoted as saying.

He added that the main obstacle facing the peace process was Israel’s rejection of international demands to halt construction of illegal settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

According to Abu Rdeina, the coming weeks will be very decisive, and autumn will be very “hot” because it will become clear whether the US will succeed in pushing forward the peace process and crystallize a framework for that process

The spokesperson said that President Mahmoud Abbas is committed to resuming the peace negotiations as soon as Israel completely stops settlement activity, including in Jerusalem, and accepts the two-state solution unconditionally. Far from being narrow Palestinian demands, he said, these conditions are built into agreements Israel signed previously.