President Shimon Peres said on Monday that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is a "true partner for peace." Peres made the remarks upon an expected summit later Monday in Washington between Abbas and US President Barack Obama.
During a meeting Peres held with human right activist Rose Mapendo, the president stressed that Abbas is a man of principle who objects to violence and terror.
"We are at a crucial stage of the negotiations and we must do everything we can to ensure they carry on," said Peres. "There is clear majority and agreement on a solution of two states for two people."
Peres added: "We must continue working with the Palestinian Authority and Abu Mazen (Mahmoud Abbas). He is a good partner and I am glad our government is negotiating with him. Disagreements are a normal thing and that is why there are negotiations – to solve disputes. There are also issues that we do agree on such as the war on terror."
The president also addressed the meeting between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Obama earlier this month. "They had a good meeting and now we wait to see what the meeting between the American president and Abu Mazen will bring about. It is in everyone's interest to find a way to overcome the gaps and there are critical decisions we must make in the upcoming weeks."
To conclude his remarks, Peres said that "negotiations are a process of creation. We all await peace; it is the heart's desire for all Israelis and Palestinians."