Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Wednesday issued a statement congratulating US President Barack Obama on his election victory and encouraging him to continue his efforts to achieve peace in the Middle East.

Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said he hoped Obama’s second term in office would see the establishment of a Palestinian state. Erekat added that, with the Palestinians determined to bid for nonmember state status at the UN this month, he expected the president to show support for the move.

“We have decided to take the Palestinian issue to the UN and we hope that Obama will stand by this Palestinian right,” Erekat said. “What Obama needs to do is stop the Israeli settlement policy and not act to stop the Palestinian activity at the UN.”

Palestinian rival Hamas called on Obama to alter his country’s foreign policy concerning Arab and Palestinian affairs. The group’s spokesman  urged the president to stop favoring Israel and examine the “Palestinians’ legal rights.”

Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi said he trusted Obama would use his second term to act in the best interests of the US and Egypt.

In a telegram of congratulations released by the official news agency MENA, Morsi said he hoped for a “strengthening of the friendship between the two countries to serve their common interests, namely justice, freedom and peace.”

“We congratulate the American people on their choice and hope that the chosen government will work in the joint interest of both peoples,” said a spokesman for the president’s bureau, Yassar Ali.

In contrast, a senior member of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Essam al-Erian, said he didn’t expect any significant changes in Washington’s policy towards the Arabs.

Al-Erian asserted that without the influence of the US, Egypt would be able to democratize the region.