Abbas says Iran obstacle to Middle East reconciliation

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday attacked Iran for disrupting the settlement process and playing a negative role in Palestinian internal dialogue.

The statements were made to the Kuwait publication Kuwait An-Nabaa.

"Frankly, Iran is not only intervening in the Palestinian issue but in the Lebanese and Yemeni issues," said Abbas. "It [Iran] motivates whoever it can to get advantages for its own interests and conflicts."

Abbas denied any Syrian intervention in the Palestinian issue. "Despite differences with Syria," he said, "its support to Hamas doesn't mean applying any special policy."

"President al-Assad had discussed several issues at which I explained my point of view," Abbas said in reference to an exchange concerning Arab Follow-Up Committee operations during a recent Middle Eastern summit.

Regarding a strategy proposal that presses for international recognition of a Palestinian state, Abbas said, “It’s not an initiative exactly, but a bunch of ideas and options that had been mulled by Palestinian leadership and will be proposed to the international society later. We’ll start by the cessation of settlements and negotiations, which is the first option. If approved, we’ll negotiate over the borders and security issue.

If the approval is denied, Abbas said Palestinian parties will seek US or UN Security Council intervention.

Translated from the Arabic Edition.

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