Abbas Warns of New Measures if Talks Fail
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas threatened Tuesday to take “new measures” against Israel attempts to renew Mideast peace talks fail, as meeting between chief Israeli and Palestinian negotiators commences in Amman.
Abbas’ comments came a day after Haaretz reported that Palestinians were preparing a diplomatic campaign that aims to put Israel under “a real international siege.”
The measures could include more action at the UN. Mahmoud Abbas issued the warning shortly before the chief Israeli and Palestinian negotiators were to meet in Amman. The goal of their meeting, the first between the sides in more than a year, is to find an agenda for renewed peace talks.
The Palestinians say Israel must freeze settlement construction and agree to return to its pre-1967 lines for peace talks to resume. The Palestinians want to establish an independent state in the West Bank, east Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip – areas that were captured in the 1967 Mideast war.
Mr. Abbas said that if Israel accepts the Palestinian conditions, “we will go to negotiations.” He said the Palestinians have set a Jan. 26 deadline for talks to resume. “After that date, we will take new measures. These measures might be hard,” he said.
Mr. Abbas said no decision has been made yet. But Palestinian officials have said they are considering resuming their push for UN membership as well as ways to isolate Israel at the United Nations, such as a new resolution condemning Israeli settlements in the West Bank and east Jerusalem.
For more, go to Haaretz.com