The Arab League on Saturday backed France’s Middle East peace initiative and all international efforts to clinch an Israeli-Palestinian peace accord.
The Arab ministers at the end of the meeting adopted a resolution backing “the French initiative and all Arab and international efforts” for peace talks between Israel and Palestinians.
The wording of the resolution appeared to leave room for reported efforts by Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi to mediate talks between Israel and the Palestinians.
In his speech to the ministers, Arab League chief Nabil al-Arabi, who has been a vocal critic of Israel, said the country “has truly become today the last bastion of fascism, colonialism and racial discrimination in the world.”
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has rejected an Israeli offer for direct negotiations instead of the French multilateral peace initiative, which Israel has turned down.
On Saturday, he blamed Israel for stalling the talks.
“We tried hard with the Israeli government to implement signed treaties and respect our and their commitments, but they refused,” he said.
The French initiative involves holding a meeting of foreign ministers from a range of countries, including US Secretary of State John Kerry, on June 3, but without the Israelis and Palestinians present.
An international conference would then be held in the autumn, with the Israelis and Palestinians in attendance. The goal is an eventual relaunch of negotiations that would lead to a Palestinian state.
Negotiations between the Israelis and Palestinians have been at a standstill since a US-led initiative collapsed in April 2014.
Twenty-eight Israelis, and four foreign nationals, have been killed in a wave of Palestinian terrorism and violence since October. Some 205 Palestinians have died, most of them in the act of carrying out knife, gun or car-ramming attacks, Israeli authorities say.
The unrest has steadily declined in recent weeks.