Erdogan: Israel 'undermining' peace efforts

Turkish President meets Abbas, calls on Israel to end actions that undermine efforts to reach a two-state solution.

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Elad Benari,

Recep Tayyip Erdogan
Recep Tayyip Erdogan
Reuters

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday accused Israel of undermining the efforts to reach a two-state solution, calling on the Jewish state to end such actions.

“To find a solution and provide peace is not only in Palestinians’ favor but also that of Israel,” he said during a meeting in Ankara with Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas, according to the Anadolu news agency.

Erdogan described the two-state solution as the “historical responsibility of the international community to the Palestinian people” and added that recent tensions at the Al-Aqsa compound in Jerusalem would not favor anyone.

“As Turkey, we always back efforts to accelerate the peace process,” Erdogan added, according to Anadolu.

“We do not want the holy city of Jerusalem, which we have served for four centuries, to dominate the news with blood, tears and conflict,” the Turkish president said.

Abbas said the Palestinian Arabs would not accept a state without Gaza, and insisted on the right to live in an independent Palestine based on the pre-1967 borders with eastern Jerusalem as its capital.

The meeting between Erdogan and Abbas comes amid efforts by the United States to renew the stalled peace talks between Israel and the PA.

President Donald Trump’s senior adviser, Jared Kushner, visited the region last week, meeting with Abbas, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and other Middle Eastern leaders.

Before Kushner’s visit, Erdogan met Jordan's King Abdullah II and the two called for new "serious and effective" peace talks between Israel and the PA.

Talks between Israel and the PA have been at a standstill since 2014, when the PA unilaterally applied to join international organizations in breach of the conditions of the talks, which were overseen by then-Secretary of State John Kerry.