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Merkel to meet Abbas as Europe mulls recognising Palestinian state

The Local · 23 Apr 2011, 09:24

Published: 23 Apr 2011 09:24 GMT+02:00

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The meeting would take place "at the invitation of the chancellor" in the context of Germany's interaction with all parties to the Middle East peace process, a government spokeswoman said, declining to specify the discussion points on the agenda.

Der Spiegel magazine said the talks would see Merkel explaining why she thinks it ill-advised for Abbas to push for recognition of a Palestinian state at a UN General Assembly meeting in New York in September.

The international community has set September as a target date for the creation of a Palestinian state, but the timeline is threatened by heightened Palestinian-Israeli hostilities and a US block on European attempts to break the deadlock.

Peace talks stalled last September after Israel refused to extend a moratorium on settlements.

"We are impatient to see what the Germans have to propose," the Palestinians' envoy to Germany Salah Abdel Shafi told Der Spiegel.

Earlier this month, Merkel received Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Berlin, saying, "We feel that there should, and there could, be progress made by the autumn, by September 2011".

She also stressed that Germany would not unilaterally recognise a Palestinian state.

Story continues below…

Abbas met President Nicolas Sarkozy in Paris on Thursday, as French ambassador Gerard Araud told the UN Security Council in New York that his country, with the rest of Europe, was considering recognition of a Palestinian state "with a view to creating a political horizon for re-launching the peace process".


The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

11:53 April 23, 2011 by Jerr-Berlin
One problem of many is the fact that Abbas and the PA have absolutely no legitimacy in the West Bank or Gaza Strip...Hamas has majority support of the average Palestinian, so to not include them in any kind of political negotiation would be meaningless...
15:41 April 23, 2011 by wenddiver
Nice to know France has a poodle. Does the European Union ever speak, because some other country wants it to, or is it just a French Megaphone.
19:43 April 23, 2011 by cobalisk
The EU should recognize Palestine as a state. This continuance of suspending the rights of an entire people is unacceptable. Someone has to lead, I am very disappointed with Merkel's towing the US party line on this. If France can can wear that hat on this one I have no problem with that and I will applaud the decision if it finally comes.
09:11 April 24, 2011 by Sastry.M
Compared to Gt.Britain or France as former colonial powers Germany has many advantages as a neutral nation with regard to the Arab world in general and Palestinians in particular. By Palestinians I mean to include both the people of Islamic faith and the Jewish.

Right from the inception of Zionist movement initiated by the Austrian Journalist Theodor Herzl to relocate all Jewish people spread and assumed different nationalities of Europe consequent to the Diaspora back to Palestrina as an united Jewish Nation of Israel the German stand of successive Reich governments remained as of clearly defined neutrality with regard to people of either faith, i.e both Jewish and Muslim.

Both Herzl and Hitler were Austrian compatriots and not German nationals but both imbibed the German spirit of tenacity in achieving their convictions. Hence Germans of both Christian and Jewish faiths were equally influenced by their campaigns and suffered in consequence although the German Jewish federation was opposed to the Jewish American sponsored belligerent Zionist tirade against Germany.

Steering clear of past history when the destinies of both Germany and creation of the state of Israel were subject to deliberations among big power blocks, the present situation demands a spirit of sacrifice which was admirably manifested by Germany in the creation of present national borders and yet to be proved by the policies of the present state of Israel. To this end Israel shares a common destiny with Germany although the former acquired a renewed geography as part of an achievement while the latter relinquished as a penalty for defeat as a result of campaigns of both the above mentioned compatriots.

Germany, therefore, should stay erect and unperturbed by all external pressures and influences and has a better stance in view of above considerations in promoting peaceful negotiations between the well acquainted Israelis and the displaced Palestinian Muslims whose sufferings were emphatically experienced by the Germans in the aftermath of ww2. Also the present German Chancellor Angela Merkel is well known as an amicable negotiator between warring parties and the Palestinians especially may well heed her advice to bring the adamant Israelis around the Conference Table and allow Germany a chance to prove herself with tactful diplomacy in finding solutions to the middle east problems peacefully.
20:07 April 25, 2011 by bernie1927

I agree with you, only you should recognize that Hamas, the rightfully elected party, has to be part of the recognition. The Americans and their real boss in this respect, Israel, may not agree, but it is high time that Germany and the rest of Europe declare their independence and state: "enough is enough".
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