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UN chief backs 2-state solution in talks with Abbas

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said to give strong backing for Palestinian state, offers congratulations on election of the Palestinians to preside over the Group of 77

File: UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, left, meets Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas at UN headquarters, February 20, 2018 in New York City. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images via JTA)
File: UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, left, meets Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas at UN headquarters, February 20, 2018 in New York City. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images via JTA)

UNITED NATIONS — The United Nations says Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has met with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and stressed again that a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is the only path to peace.

Guterres’ strong backing for an independent Palestinian state came ahead of the release of a long-awaited US plan for Israeli-Palestinian peace and Israeli elections in April.

UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric says Guterres also congratulated Abbas during Monday’s meeting on the election of the Palestinians to preside over the Group of 77, a bloc of 134 mainly developing nations and China that promotes their collective interests at the United Nations. Abbas will take over the chairmanship from Egypt on Tuesday.

As Abbas and his entourage left UN headquarters, Palestinian Ambassador Riyad Mansour told reporters: “It was a good meeting.”

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