Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas announced that he was ready for any confidential or public talks with Israel, following a meeting with his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron. The Palestinian leader, who has time-and-again rejected any American peace proposals, stressed that he would welcome any initiative brought forward by the International Quartet, which consists of Russia, the United Nations, the European Union and the United States, in addition to any European or Arab country, interested in participating in the international efforts. “Now we say that we are ready for any confidential or public talks — the mediator will be the International Quartet plus other countries. We welcome any European or Arab countries.” / “There is a French vision and French attention to reach a solution (Israeli Palestinian conflict), by communicating with all the parties. Of course, we exchanged views and I did clarify to his excellency the president (Emmanuel Macron) all what we have as Palestinians. He will meet with (President) Trump and will pass to him what we have discussed. We are confident of France’s stance,” said Abbas. He also took the opportunity to thank the European Union for “substituting” the U.S. by providing financial aid to the Palestinians. He said that the EU member states were “working seriously” to fill the monetary gap of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees – after the U.S. Administration announced its decision to end its funding for UNRWA last month, in response to the Agency’s continued refusal to enact reform.