Jordan’s King Abdullah II will visit Ramallah on Sunday, within efforts to prevent collapse of the Palestinian National Authority, chief Palestinian negotiator , Saeb Erekat says.
“This visit is intended to save the PNA from collapse and explores ways to revive the stalled peace process on basis of a Palestinian statehood within the 1967 boundaries, with Jerusalem as its capital”, Erekat told Voice of Palestine Radio.
Erekat denied media reports that the King’s visit aims at returning the Palestinian conditions back to prior to 1967, mainly the annexation of the West Bank to Jordan.
Palestinian factions expressed divided positions towards the visit.
A press release by the President Abbas-led Fatah movement, read “ we highly estimate King Abdullah’s efforts”.
The Islamic Jihad movement (Holy Struggle) welcomed the visit only if it is meant to support the Palestinian cause and resistance”.
Senior Jihad leader in Gaza, Khaled Albatsh, was quoted as saying “It is clear that the king’s visit comes in the framework of pushing forward an Arab peace initiative re-endorsed in March by the Arab states league”.
Abdullah’s third visit to the territories since the King mounted to throne in 1999, comes this time while Israel is plagued by a political standoff in light of sharp criticism to Israeli prime minister, Ehud Olmert, over ‘mishandling of last summer war on Lebanon’.
In addition, meetings between Palestinian president and Israeli prime minister have not so far produced any concrete results either at the political or the economic levels, as Israel has not recognized a newly-born Palestinian unity government, nor it has eased economic and movement restrictions across the Palestinian territories.