Abbas: Willing to speak to Knesset on my terms

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said he would be willing to speak to the Knesset, but only on the issues he chooses.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in a public statement last week called on Abbas to address the Knesset and said he would travel to Ramallah to speak to the P.A. leadership.

“Netanyahu comes up with an offer and then immediately puts forward his own terms – that this and that should be said and so on. No, if those terms are put forward, I do not accept that,” Abbas told the Voice of Russia in remarks broadcast Friday. “But if he wants me to come and say the things I want to say, then I am ready to do it — but only in order to say what I want to say and not what he wants to hear. ”

Abbas said there would be a “full-fledged” Palestinian state.

“When Israel realizes the need to establish peace in the Middle East, then there will emerge a Palestinian state with the capital in holy Jerusalem,” the P.A. leader said.

He said the Palestinian Authority currently is not discussing efforts to push forward a bid for full membership in the United Nations.

Abbas said Russia has a “significant part to play” in peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians.

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