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Officials said on Tuesday that the Palestinians have frozen all contacts with the United States, after it decided to close their representative office in Washington, D.C., reported Agence France-Presse (AFP) news agency.

“In practice, by closing the office, they [the Americans] are freezing all meetings, and we are making that official,” Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki told AFP.

A spokesman for the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) confirmed that it had received instructions from Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas “regarding closing down all communication lines with the Americans.”

PLO needs to have a license for use of space in Washington, and the US Department of State issues such licenses within six months. But last week, the Department decided not to extend this license of the PLO.

According to US officials, the reason was Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas’ comments on the Israeli actions’ possible consideration at the International Criminal Court.

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