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Egypt and PLO agree on need to resume negotiations 

Palestine Liberation Organization's Secretary General Saeb Erekat speaks to journalists during a press conference in the West Bank city of Ramallah on 11 September 2018 [AHMAD GHARABLI/AFP/Getty Images]
The Secretary-General of the PLO Executive Committee, Saeb Erekat, 8 November 2019 [AHMAD GHARABLI/AFP/Getty Images]

Egypt’s Foreign Minister and the Secretary General of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organisation have agreed on the importance of resuming peace negotiations, Anadolu has reported. Sameh Shoukry and Saeb Erekat also agreed on the need to maintain their mutual efforts to combat the coronavirus Covid-19 outbreak.

“It is important to prepare for the resumption of the negotiation process [between the Palestinians and Israelis] as soon as the Coronavirus crisis ends,” agreed the two officials.

They spoke by telephone on Tuesday. A statement issued by the Foreign Ministry in Cairo confirmed that they also discussed developments in the virus crisis, and possible ways of cooperation in order to curb the spread of the pandemic.

The number of Covid-19 infections in Egypt is now 1,322 with 85 patients dying. In the occupied Palestinian territories, at least 260 coronavirus cases have been recorded.

READ: 3m tourist workers in Egypt to suffer from COVID-19 shutdown

Talks between the Palestinians and Israeli occupation authorities have been stalled for years. In January, the Palestinians rejected the peace plan known as the “deal of the century” cobbled together by US President Donald Trump to appease the far-right Israeli government of Benjamin Netanyahu.

Under the deal, the Palestinians would have no part of occupied Jerusalem for their capital. They insist that East Jerusalem, which Israel occupied in 1967, must be the capital of any future Palestinian state.

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