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Jordan and Egypt key to Abbas' Washington visit

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In what seems to be a rite of passage, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas visited Cairo April 29 and Amman April 30 before heading to Washington for his important visit to the White House May 3.

The two US allies in the region have become a crucial part of the Palestinian negotiating strategy. While late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat routinely visited Egypt before any major decision, Abbas has added the Jordanian capital as the second-most important Arab capital in his must-visit plans before any major trip.

Hamadeh Faraneh, a member of the Palestinian National Council since 1984 and a former parliament member in the 13th Jordanian parliament, listed to Al-Monitor a number of reasons for this regular pilgrimage: “Jordan and Egypt were the two countries that were in control of Palestinian areas before the 1967 Israeli occupation. They are also the two countries that have signed peace agreements with Israel, and they border Palestinian territory.”

Faraneh explained that this is the fifth coordination meeting in the short period since the Jan. 20 inauguration of US President Donald Trump. “Abbas met with the leaders of Egypt and Jordan before the

© Al Monitor