Friday, April 22, 2011

Merkel to 'friendly' press Abbas to drop unilateral declaration of State at UN

(Ynet).Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas will meet German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin on May 5, the German government said on Friday, as Europe mulls the recognition of a Palestinian state.

Weekly news magazine Der Spiegel said the talks would see Merkel explaining why she thinks it ill-advised for Abbas to push for recognition of a Palestinian state at a UN General Assembly meeting in New York in September.

"We are impatient to see what the Germans have to propose," the Palestinians' envoy to Germany Salah Abdel Shafi was quoted as telling the weekly.

Earlier this month, Merkel received Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Berlin, saying: "We feel that there should, and there could, be progress made by the autumn, by September 2011".

She also stressed that Germany would not unilaterally recognize a Palestinian state.