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Report: Kerry and Abbas to Meet in Jordan

Jordanian newspaper claims Secretary of State will meet PA Chairman during a two-day visit to Jordan.
By Elad Benari
First Publish: 6/2/2014, 4:15 AM

Kerry and Abbas (archive)
Kerry and Abbas (archive)
Reuters

United States Secretary of State John Kerry is scheduled to start a two-day visit to Jordan Wednesday, where he will meet with Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, Jordanian daily newspaper al-Arab al-Yawm reported Sunday.

The report, cited by the Ma’an news agency, quoted a "high-profile" Jordanian official as saying that Abbas and Kerry will discuss the currently suspended PA-Israeli peace talks, the ongoing unity talks between Hamas and Fatah, and the expected unity government, among other issues.

Kerry will also meet with Jordanian officials, the newspaper quoted the official as saying.

Asked whether Kerry would leave Amman to Israel for a meeting with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, the Jordanian official said that "preparations have been made so far for a visit to Amman, and any changes to the visit plans would be dependent on Kerry's meeting with president Abbas."

The meeting will take place several weeks after Israel pulled out of the talks in response to a Hamas-Fatah unity agreement, which would see the Hamas terrorist group forming a unity government with Abbas’s movement.

Kerry has remained optimistic throughout the peace process, though even he admitted recently that it was time for the United States to take a "pause" the talks.

His spokeswoman, Jen Psaki, said recently that Kerry was “preoccupied” with other international matters and was not planning to present a new initiative for peace.

Nevertheless, a few weeks ago Kerry met Abbas in London for what was described as “informal talks”. He later also met with Justice Minister Tzipi Livni, Israel’s chief negotiator, though the State Department insisted the meeting happened because Kerry and Livni both happened to be in London at the same time.