Jordan-Saudi leaders urge Palestinian unity


Jordan’s King Abdullah II and visiting Saudi King Abdullah also reaffirmed their support for Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas, who arrived separately in Jordan and was due to meet later with the Saudi monarch, a palace statement said.

The two monarchs "reaffirmed their continuous support for Palestinian legitimacy represented by the Palestinian Authority and its president Mahmud Abbas," a palace statement said.

This was necessary "in order to enable the Palestinians to become an effective and strong partner in the peace process," it added.

The statement did not mention by name the Islamist movement Hamas but spoke of the deteriorating humanitarian situation in the Palestinian territories, especially in the Gaza Strip.

Hamas fighters on June 15 overran security forces loyal to the Western-backed Abbas in Gaza, effectively splitting the Palestinians into two geographically divided and separately ruled entities.

Hamas’s action prompted Abbas to dismiss a three-month-old unity government set up under a power-sharing deal brokered by Saudi Arabia in February.

The Saudi and Jordanian monarchs "warned of the dangerous repercussions of the situation in the Palestinian territories, reaffirming that internal Palestinian divisions do not serve Palestinian interests", the palace said.

Such divisions "provide Israel with a pretext to avoid peace", it warned.

The two leaders "also discussed ways of reactivating Arab coordination with the international Middle East Quartet, to revive the peace process leading to serious political negotiations aimed at clear and final" results, it added.

The Saudi monarch arrived earlier to a red-carpet welcome in Jordan, at the start of a two-day visit following a tour of Spain, France, Poland and Egypt.

The Saudi monarch has urged rival Palestinian factions to settle their differences or face serious repercussions.


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