President Shimon Peres
and King Abdullah II
met Friday on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos to discussed ways to further peace in the Middle East.
According to the Office of the President, the summit was but one in a series of "intensive meetings" held between Peres and leaders of countries and global groups. The meetings are said to focus on matters of diplomacy and economy.
Peres has issued several calls in recent months urging Israeli and Palestinian leaders to resume the peace talks. Officials on the Right have decried the remarks as criticism of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
and have urged the president to avoid making statements of political nature.
Peres at World Economic Forum in Davos (Photo: EPA)
Earlier this month, Peres told the New York Times Magazine that “that if the people of Israel
heard from the leadership that there is a chance for peace, they would take up the gauntlet and believe it.”
Voicing disapproval of the prime minister's inaction to restart the stalled peace process, he added: "He may do nothing, but that doesn’t mean that things won’t be done.
"This idea, that history is a horse that can be held by the tail, is a foolish idea. After all, the fire can be lit in an instant: another word, another shot, and in the end everyone will lose control.
"If there is no diplomatic decision, the Palestinians will go back to terror. Knives, mines, suicide attacks," Peres warned.
He further said that he disagrees with Netanyahu's assertion that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas
is not a partner for peace.
"To my mind, he is an excellent partner," he said. "Our military people describe to me the extent to which the Palestinian forces are cooperating with us to combat terror."