Bloomberg News

Mideast Quartet to Meet Next Week in Jerusalem, Abbas Says

October 14, 2011

(Updates with comments from Abbas in second paragraph.)

Oct. 14 (Bloomberg) -- Envoys from a negotiating group aimed at mediating the peace process between Israel and the Palestinians will meet in Jerusalem next week, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said.

If Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “agrees to a two-state solution based on the 1967 border and he stops building settlements, we are ready to resume negotiations right away,” Abbas told reporters today after talks in Paris with French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

Abbas arrived from Latin America, where he met with leaders in Colombia and Venezuela to drum up support for a Security Council vote to accord United Nations membership to a Palestinian state. No vote has been scheduled, and he wouldn’t say when he expected it could come.

Next week’s meeting of the so-called Mideast Quartet, comprising the U.S., the European Union, Russia and the United Nations, will be at the delegate level, Abbas said. “We will see them and perhaps they will also see Israeli representatives,” he said.

Two days ago, the U.S. State Department said the Quartet was seeking to arrange Israel-Palestinian talks on Oct. 23 in Jordan.

The Palestinians have said that at least eight council members -- Russia, China, Gabon, Nigeria, South Africa, Brazil, Lebanon and India -- will back their bid in the Security Council. A U.S. veto pledge notwithstanding, that still leaves the Palestinians one vote short of the nine needed for membership.

Sarkozy told the UN last month that France prefers a return to direct negotiations to a premature Security Council vote.

--Editors: Jennifer M. Freedman, James Hertling

To contact the reporter on this story: Gregory Viscusi in Paris at gviscusi@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Hertling at jhertling@bloomberg.net


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