Mahmoud Abbas

Netanyahu: I don't share Rabbi Yosef's views

By Jennifer Lipman, August 30, 2010

The Israeli Prime Minister has distanced himself from inflammatory remarks about Mahmoud Abbas made by Rabbi Ovadia Yosef.

The spiritual leader of the religious party Shas said in an address on Saturday that the Palestinian leader should "vanish from our world" and labelled the Palestinians as evil and bitter enemies.

The 89-year-old, who is a former Sephardic Chief Rabbi of Israel, also said that God should strike the Palestinians “with a plague”.

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Direct Middle East peace talks due September

By Jennifer Lipman, August 20, 2010

Hillary Clinton has announced the first direct talks between Israel and the Palestinians in nearly two years.

The US Secretary of State invited Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas to Washington to resume negotiations in order to creat a "just and lasting peace."

Egyptian and Jordanian leaders have also been asked to attend.

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Direct Middle East talks near

By Jennifer Lipman, August 19, 2010

It could be just days before direct negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians take place.

The United States government and the Quartet have been working on the details for some time now and are believed to be very close to agreeing on a timetable for direct talks.

Last week Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the United States Middle East envoy George Mitchell that it was time “to get on with it”.

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Abbas faces hard choice over Israel talks

By Anshel Pfeffer, August 5, 2010

The next few weeks will be extremely stressful for Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

The notorious procrastinator, who has shied away from anything like a decision in his five and a half years at the helm of the PA, is under intense pressure to agree to direct negotiations with the Netanyahu government - and not even his Arab allies are prepared to help him out.

Last Thursday, the Arab League convened in Cairo and gave Mr Abbas authority to decide on the resumption of talks with Israel, at his discretion.

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