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Israel’s Lapid ducks calls from PA head Abbas

Reports say that unlike President Isaac Herzog and Defense Minister Benny Gantz, Prime Minister Yair Lapid avoided requests for a phone call from Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas ahead of the Jewish New Year.
Interim Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz (not pictured) speak to the media following talks at the Chancellery, Berlin, Germany, Sept. 12, 2022.

Reports Sept. 28 revealed that three days earlier, on Sept. 25, the office of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas contacted the office of Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid. The Palestinians wanted to coordinate a phone call between the two leaders, to mark the Jewish New Year. The conversation has yet to take place. When news of this was leaked to the press, Lapid’s office said, “The conversation will take place, according to the commonly accepted protocols.”

In contrast, Abbas spoke this week on the phone separately with President Isaac Herzog and with Minister of Defense Benny Gantz, wishing them a happy New Year. In the conversation, Herzog stressed the need to maintain and advance neighborly relations between the two peoples, and the importance of cooperation to restore calm and prevent violence. Gantz stressed that the Palestinian Authority (PA) must take steps to prevent an escalation of violence in the West Bank.

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