Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Abbas: We'll remind world what peace process was built on

BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) – President Mahmoud Abbas said Tuesday that the Palestinian Authority would send a message to the Israeli government and to the world reminding them of the bases and terms of reference on which the Middle East peace process was built.

“We will not accept continuation of the status quo, and will soon take the steps we have agreed on with the Arab countries,” he said.

At a meeting in Ramallah with members of his Fatah party's Revolutionary Council, Abbas said the peace process collapsed because the Israeli government violated previously signed agreements.

The Israeli government, he added, failed to comply with international resolutions, the international Quartet’s decisions and the Road Map peace plan, and instead imposed facts on the ground through increasing settlement activities. Israel continued to confiscate Palestinian lands in the West Bank and Jerusalem for the separation wall and settlements.

Abbas updated the Fatah leadership on the results of exploratory meetings between Palestinian and Israeli officials in Amman as well as the outcome of the meetings with the Arab follow up committee in Cairo.

He reiterated that the Palestinian side would insist that Israel recognize the borders of an independent Palestinian state and stop settlement activities in order to start serious negotiations leading to a withdrawal from Palestinian territory occupied in 1967.

The president stressed that national reconciliation between Palestinian rivals would remain a priority. The leadership is adamant to put into effect all terms of the reconciliation agreement, the most important of which is the technocrat government which will reconstruct the Gaza Strip and prepare for elections.

Maan News Agency