Speaking to Israeli reporters on Thursday, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said that for the past two months his office and Prime Minister Netanyahu's office have been communicating in an attempt to arrange a meeting, but that Netanyahu did not respond to the latest message.But in Palestinian Arab media, the news that Abbas claims to have tried to restart negotiations is virtually absent.
"There have been talks between my office and Netanyahu's office and the US was not in the picture at all," Abbas said Thursday. "Among other things, there were talks about a meeting between us." The Prime Minister's Office rejected the claims, saying: "This is not true. This is an attempt by Abbas to avoid his responsibility for the lack of negotiations. Today as well, in Davos, Netanyahu called for Abbas to come and negotiate without preconditions."
The PA's official Wafa news agency, which reports on every phone call Abbas makes, mentioned the meeting with Israeli jurnalists - but didn't say a word about this supposed initiative in either English or Arabic.
If Abbas is serious about negotiations, then why is he embarrassed to say so in his own official media?
It seems clear that Abbas' claim was nothing more than an attempt to speak the language of peace to the world while maintaining his intransigence - which he brags about to his people.
There is something very interesting on Abbas' Facebook page, in Arabic and English.
The second sentence seems to contradict the first, but assuming that the second sentence is his main point, it sounds like Abbas is telling his people that any criticism of him or his government is tantamount to treachery.
Too bad the Israeli journalists didn't ask him about that, or any of the many other questions that no one ever asks Abbas.
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