Israeli President Shimon Peres congratulated Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on his decision to return to peace talks, during a phone call on Sunday.
“You took a brave and historic decision to return to negotiations – don’t listen to the skeptics, you did the right thing,” Peres told Abbas, according to a press release from his office.
Peres promised Abbas that the Israeli side would “do all we can to solve the conflict and to live together in peace. We want to see both nations going down the right path.”
According to Peres’s office, Abbas thanked Peres for his words and said he hopes that they will continue and conclude the peace process which was started many years ago. He expressed his hope that progress will be made and that an independent Palestinian state will be established living in peace alongside the State of Israel.
Peres also spoke with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry Saturday, congratulating him on his successful push to resume peace negotiations, saying it proved “No issue was too small for you.”
Kerry announced Friday that Israel and the Palestinian Authority had agreed to resume direct negotiations in Washington in the coming weeks. The announcement came nearly three years after the last direct talks between the two sides were held.