Abbas, Erdogan discuss support for Palestinian statehood

Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas met with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Cairo Wednesday to discuss international support for the Palestinian plans to seek United Nations recognition of an official state. 

"The meeting tackled possible efforts by the friendly country (Turkey) to support that bid," the Palestinian Authority's Cairo ambassador, Barakat al-Farra, told reporters after the meeting.

He added that the leaders also discussed Arab efforts to demand full Palestinian UN membership. Abbas lauded Turkey's role in supporting the Palestinian cause, according to Farra.

Erdogan arrived in Cairo Monday for a two-day visit. He told a meeting of Arab foreign ministers Tuesday that Palestinian statehood is an obligation rather than an option, predicting that Palestine would have a different position at the UN by the end of the month.

Palestinians are seeking full UN membership and a sovereign state based on the 1967 borders in Gaza and the West Bank after the latest round of negotiations with Israel failed a year ago.

But Israel has been trying to dissuade the Palestinian Authority from its plans, suggesting a return to the negotiating table. The US had earlier threatened to use its veto power to sabotage the statehood bid.

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