Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday congratulated President Donald Trump on the visiting Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas in Moscow. Abbas responded by saying he did not want to cooperate with Washington because Washington acknowledged Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
Speaking at the beginning of their meeting in the Kremlin, Putin told Abbas that he had just had a phone call with Trump. "Of course we are addressing the settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and I want to pass on Trump's greetings to you," said Putin.
Abbas responded by saying his side did not cooperate with America as a sponsor of the peace process but welcomed the multilateral cooperation .
To fulfill his promise while still campaigning, Trump last December recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and promised to move the American Embassy there.
Trump's ruling infuriated the Palestinians and the entire Muslim world. Palestinian leaders say the recognition means Washington can no longer be an intermediary for Middle East peace.
"We do not want to cooperate with America as a sponsor. President Trump again surprised us. His decision to move the American Embassy to Jerusalem and consider Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is like slapping our faces, "Abbas told Putin as broadcast by the Russian news agency.