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Mahmoud Abbas, King Abdullah II meet as US regional approach changes

Adjustments made in the US' Middle East policy are seen as advantageous for Jordan and Palestine.

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Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has met with Jordanian King Abdullah II in Amman on Sunday to discuss regional developments. The meeting was their first since a new Israeli government took office in June, led by Prime Minister Naftali Bennett.

The two leaders deliberated the latest political developments and Abbas avowed the “continuation of brotherly co-ordination,” the official Palestinian news agency said. The two men said they strongly opposed the latest US peace plan under former President Donald Trump and that it was a threat to national interests.

The election of President Joe Biden last year reversed the role of Jordan under his predecessor and enriched ties between the Palestinian Authority and Washington.

The head of Palestinian intelligence, Maj. Gen. Majed Al Faraj, and Jordanian intelligence chief Ahmad Hasani also attended the meeting, official media said.

King Abdullah II “affirmed the need to intensify international efforts to achieve a just peace” during the meeting, Jordan’s state news agency reported. The US played a crucial role in a ceasefire in May that ended 11 days of conflict between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

This month, the US State Department criticized plans by Bennett’s government to build at least 2,000 homes, saying such a move would undermine the two-state solution. It was the first direct criticism of Israeli settlement policy since Biden was inaugurated in January.

The settlements, to be inhabited by Jewish settlers, are planned to be built on Palestinian land, widely recognized as occupied territory by the international community.

Bennett is expected to visit Washington in the next few weeks, while King Abdullah II met with Biden in Washington last month in an official visit.

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