A member of the Executive Committee of the PLO, Saeb Erekat, said on Wednesday that the persistent tragedy of the Palestinian people [the Nakba] for 65 years is a shame on the international community. The Nakba has continued through the on-going Israeli occupation which began in 1967 and continued violations and settlement construction, particularly in occupied East Jerusalem and its environs.
This statement was made during a separate meeting between Erekat and the UN Secretary-General’s Personal Representative, Robert Serry, the French Consul General, Frederic Desagneaux and Japan’s representative to the State of Palestine, Junien Matsuura.
Erekat stressed that the Israeli government’s decision to continue with settlement activities, the latest of which is the proposed construction of 296 units in the settlement of Beit El, confirms that this Israeli government has chosen settlements and impositions rather than peace and negotiations.
Erekat called on the international community to continue to make every possible effort toward the release of Palestinian prisoners, especially those who were arrested before the end of 1994.