Abbas Rejects Quartet’s Blueprint

Not so fast. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas says he is reviewing the Middle East Quartet’s idea for peace talks to start again within a month, but is against any plan that does not require Israel to stop building settlements. He also reiterated what other Palestinian officials said by stating that he expects a decision on the Palestinian bid for statehood from the U.N. in two weeks. After Abbas submitted the bid, the Quartet (which is composed of the U.S., the U.N., the European Union, and Russia) suggested that Israel and the Palestinians resume peace talks with the goal of making a deal by the end of 2012. On Saturday, Abbas said, “We will not deal with any initiative which does not contain a halt to settlement or the ’67 borders.”