Palestine’s Mahmoud Abbas commences regional tour to Jordan, Egypt

Fatma Lotfi
3 Min Read

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas began, on Sunday, a regional tour to Jordan and Egypt respectively, to discuss latest updates in the regional and international arenas. 

Palestinian Ambassador to Cairo Diab Al-Louh said that Abbas’s visit comes “in the framework of joint coordination between the Palestinian and Egyptian leaderships to face political challenges.”

Abbas is scheduled to meet Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi and Jordanian King Abdullah II during the tour.

Hussein Al-Sheikh, Head of the General Authority of Civil Affairs and Member of the Fatah Central Committee, tweeted on Saturday, “Abbas will be meeting [King] Abdullah II, and then he will be meeting with his brother President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi to discuss the political updates regionally and internationally.”

Samir Ghattas, an expert in Palestinian affairs and director of the Middle East Forum for Strategic Studies, told Daily News Egypt that the scheduled Egyptian-Palestinian talks in Cairo are expected to address internal Palestinian situation and the reconciliation efforts between Fatah and Hamas movements. The meeting will also address the new Palestinian-Arab politics in the light of the recent normalisation accords signed by the UAE, Bahrain, and Sudan with Israel, as well as the new US administration headed by President-elect Joe Biden.

Ghattas pointed out that the talks between Hamas and Fatah always collapse because the former “always find excuses to disclaim its agreements, including the October agreement in Cairo in 2017.”

He added that the recent talks in Istanbul were about holding parliamentary and presidential elections, respectively, within six months, but Hamas wanted to hold all elections at the same time.

Moreover, Ghattas expected that the Biden administration would reopen the Palestine Liberation Organization’s headquarters in Washington, and resume economic, security funds to the Palestinian Authority as well as the US funding to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). 

In addition, Biden will not accept the Israeli annexation of Palestinian territories, nor will he recognise the Israeli settlement policy. 

However, Ghattas said that Biden will not suspend the US President Donald Trump’s Peace Plan, dubbed “the deal of the century,” as Washington will not revoke its recognition of Jerusalem as capital of Israel, but it would reopen the US Consulate in East Jerusalem.

Ghattas said he does not expect the birth of an independent Palestinian state in the Biden era.

Meanwhile, Mostafa Kamel El-Sayed, Professor of Political Science at Cairo University, told Daily News Egypt that the new possible changes in the US administration policies towards the Palestinian Cause would be on the discussion table between Abbas and Al-Sisi. 

El-Sayed added that Cairo will continue to push for Palestinian reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah after recent attempts have faltered.  

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A journalist in DNE's politics section with more than six years of experience in print and digital journalism, focusing on local political issues, terrorism and human rights. She also writes features on women issues and culture.