Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas says the recent Middle East peace conference held in the United States achieved its goal of revitalizing negotiations.

Mr. Abbas defended the conference to reporters Saturday in Cairo, where he was meeting with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.

Mr. Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert agreed during the U.S. hosted conference near Washington in Annapolis (Maryland) to resume negotiations.

The Palestinian leader says there was a myth the Annapolis conference was supposed to lead to a deal.

Mr. Abbas says former Palestinian Prime Minister Ahmed Qureia will lead the negotiations with the Israelis, with talks to begin December 12. He says meetings are planned for Paris and Moscow.

The two sides have agreed to work continuously to reach a two-state solution by the end of next year.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.