The Syrian government has put off a meeting with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who was scheduled to visit Damascus on Saturday. His visit did not get the green light by the Syrian leadership, according to Arabic press reports.
Syrian officials conveyed to the Palestinian side that the senior Syrian officials' agenda was busy and that Damascus would prefer to postpone the visit. The Palestinian National Authority has considered this message as a political signal reflecting a Syrian decision not to support President Abbas' policies, which call to resume indirect peace talks with Israel. The London-based Al Quds Al Arabi newspaper quoted Syrian sources as saying that Damascus is not entirely satisfied with the overall policies of Abbas, who "ignore" Syria's interests. In recent days it was reported that leaders in Libya and Tunisia have both ignored Abbas' requests for a meeting. It was reported that Libyan leader Colonel Gaddafi refused to accept Abbas, who visited Libya Sunday, after the latter refused to sign a paper to reconcile with Hamas in the Arab Summit scheduled to 27 March in Sirte.