Palestinian president asks Turkey to support Palestine

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas speaks during a news conference following the extraordinary meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Istanbul, Turkey, December 13, 2017. REUTERS/Osman Orsal

Ramallah, Sep 22 (IANS) Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas asked his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan to help the Palestinians to hold elections, realize unity, and end internal split.

The Palestinian news agency WAFA reported that Abbas spoke with Erdogan on the telephone and discussed the current dialogue among Palestinian factions on Monday.

Abbas asked Erdogan to support the Palestinians in holding the elections, and ensure Turkish observers to monitor the elections, Xinhua news agency reported.

The WAFA report also said that Abbas briefed Erdogan over the recent political developments in the region and the pressure that the United States is exerting on several Arab countries to normalize relations with Israel.

Abbas said it is necessary to face such pressure and urge the Arab states to abide by the Arab Peace Initiative made in 2002.

On September 3, Abbas chaired a meeting held online attended by leaders of 14 Palestinian factions, who all agreed on a plan of unity to face the current political challenges.

The Palestinians held the last presidential elections in 2005, when Abbas succeeded late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. In 2006, Hamas won the parliamentary elections held in the Palestinian territories.

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