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Fatah official: PA will not extend 'failed' peace talks

March 10, 2014 at 2:02 pm

Mohamed Shtayyeh, a member of Fatah’s Executive Committee, has predicted that the ongoing Palestinian-Israeli peace talks being brokered by the US will fail and instead the Palestinian Authority (PA) is going to adopt a one-state solution.

The current round of the negotiations ends on 29 April and Shtayyeh confirmed that there will not be an extension of the talks, not even for one day. “This round will end with failure and then we will say farewell to the two-state solution,” he said.

Shtayyeh, who was speaking at the Palestinian Bar Association conference in Jericho, noted that the on-going negotiations are not helping Palestinians to establish their state, which has been recognised by 148 nations. “If we accepted or refused the US proposal, then there would still be nothing helpful” vis-à-vis establishing a sovereign state, he reasoned.

When the talks end in failure, Shtayyeh, who had previously resigned from the Palestinian negotiating team over Israel’s continued settlement activity, said that the PA leadership will go to the UN and international bodies to prosecute Israel over its crimes against the Palestinians.

He also called for holding an international conference similar to the one that is currently being held in Montreux, Switzerland on the Syrian crisis. “The Palestinian leadership committed a mistake when it did not immediately go to the UN,” he observed, adding that “we must correct our mistake.”

The senior Fatah and PA official said that the PA should have signed international treaties, including the Geneva Convention and the International Criminal Court, immediately after it was recognised as a non-member state at the UN.

Going to the UN, according to Shtayyeh, is an effort to internationalise the Palestinian issue. Thus, he argued, international law will be the referee in all future Palestinian-Israeli negotiations.

“Going to the UN aims to change ending the occupation from a negotiation issue, to one that is realised based on the timetable referred to by international law,” he said.

He described the marathon efforts of US Secretary of State John Kerry regarding the ongoing peace talks as “dangerous”. The reason, he explained, is the possibility that these efforts might lead to a new referee for the negotiations instead of international law.