Sunday, December 24, 2017

Saudi Crown Prince Tried to Persuade Abbas to Support US Peace Plan: Officials

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman mounted pressure on Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to back a so-called US-sponsored peace plan for Israel-Palestine, Palestinian officials said.

Abbas was invited to Saudi Arabia's capital Riyadh on Tuesday where he held talks with King Salman and Mohammed bin Salman.

The invitation came shortly following a meeting of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Istanbul where Abbas announced that he would no longer accept the US as a broker in the peace process.

However, on Tuesday bin Salman told Abbas that the US was "the only game in town" with regards to the peace process.

"The US is the only one with real influence on Israel, it's the only country that can put pressure on Israel in any peace process and no one else can do (that), neither EU, nor Russia or China," bin Salman told Abbas, according to Palestinian officials with knowledge of the meeting, The Middle East Eye reported.

The Saudi crown prince had reportedly told Abbas in a previous visit early this month that the US was "preparing for a peace deal, and this deal might not look good at the beginning but at the end it will be good."

"At some point bin Salman warned President Abbas that if he doesn't do the job in Lebanon, there are others who can do it, pointing to Mohammed Dahlan," one official said.


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