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Abed Rabbo: Continued negotiations could lead to a political disaster

February 12, 2014 at 3:18 pm

Secretary of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) Yasser Abed Rabbo said that the chances of the Palestinian-Israeli negotiations succeeding are “non-existent”. He warned that if the negotiations continue as they are, they “will lead to political disaster”.

During an interview with Palestine’s official radio, Abed Rabbo noted that, “the negotiating process will end with a political disaster in light of Israel’s continued policy” of settlement and occupation.

While in London, US Secretary of State John Kerry held talks with President Mahmoud Abbas on Sunday evening, asking Abbas to “intensify” the direct negotiations with Israel, which resumed this summer.

Abed Rabbo feels that the American and Israeli sides “are the only beneficiaries of these negotiations,” pointing out that the US wishes to give an impression that a political process is going on in light of the region’s current situation; while Israel is happy to continue with the negotiations amid international, Arab and Palestinian silence on its occupying practices on the ground. “Israel commits grand violations. It expands the settlements, confiscates the Palestinians’ land, violates Al-Aqsa Mosque daily, and issues a green light to the settlers’ gangs, encouraging and supporting them to create a new reality in Al-Aqsa Mosque similar to the one in Ibrahim Mosque in Hebron.”

Abed Rabbo stressed that, “the situation does not indicate that negotiations will witness any progress. The only progress is Israel’s expanded settlements,” noting that Israel exploits the negotiations to influence Arab and international positions.

On Sunday, Kerry called upon the European Union to freeze the EU’s newly issued guidelines, which exclude settlements in the occupied West Bank from future funding.

Abed Rabbo expressed astonishment at Kerry’s position, pointing out that the European Union “suffers from US and Israeli pressure to back down from their decision.” He accused Netanyahu’s government of orchestrating a worldwide “campaign of disinformation, lies and deception” in regards to the negotiations, “while in reality it continues settlement activities and violations amid the absence of serious negotiations.”