Friday, 22 February, 2019

Amb. Haley Tells PA Negotiator Erekat, "I Will Not Shut Up"

Sarah Silverman Sarah Silverman
Melinda Barton | 22 February, 2018, 04:54

After U.S. President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital late previous year, Palestinians eschewed Washington's traditional role as peace broker, prompting Abbas to propose an alternative.

Stressing the U.N.'s opposition to such a reality, he said: "It is simply impossible to square the circle of a one-state reality with the legitimate national, historic and democratic aspirations of both Israelis and Palestinians".

Islamic Hamas movement said in a press statement Wednesday that Abbas's initiative "anchors his policy in taking decisions alone".

Abbas then left the room yesterday before U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley began her rebuttal to his speech. With this, the USA appeared as though it does not care about the humanitarian ramifications of such a decision, which would have undesirable side effects on tens of thousands of Palestinian families who would become homeless and starving as a result of such a reckless step. "We will present it when it is done and the time is right". Indeed, the USA has grown increasingly isolated at the United Nations since Trump announced his controversial decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital, a step that most of the world, including all previous US administrations, contended would have to await a final peace deal.

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said that only a two-state solution would work and there was no Plan B. Yet, he added, that its prospects could be receding.

Palestine President Mahmoud Abbas has presented a three-point peace plan centred on convening an global peace conference by mid-year to resolve the intractable conflict with Israel and reiterated his readiness for negotiations. "Putting forward old talking points and entrenched and undeveloped concepts achieves nothing. We welcome you as the leader of the Palestinian people here today", she said, though Abbas was long gone.

Abbas accused Israel of "acting as a State above the law".

She said the US will not change its decision on December 6 to move the USA embassy to Jerusalem, a move that has frozen U.S.

The US ambassador to the United Nations, of course, boasted about America's negotiating team sitting behind her in the Security Council session.

Hamas, for its part, blasted Abbas' calls to resume what it called "pathetic negotiations" while Israel continues to violate basic Palestinian rights.

Reiterating Palestine's commitment to hold negotiations with Israel, Abbas said it "is our strategic choice for the sake of the coming generations in our region". Instead, he said, it is "reviewing" its relationship with Israel.

The Palestinians want to set up a state in the West Bank, Gaza Strip and east Jerusalem, lands Israel captured in the 1967 war.

"I expected Mr. Abbas to stay with us and have a dialogue, unfortunately he's once again running away", Danny Danon, Israel's ambassador to the United Nations said, according to CNN. But there have been no serious negotiations since gaps widened following the 2009 election of Benjamin Netanyahu as Israel's prime minister.

"Rather than driving just 12 minutes between Ramallah and Jerusalem", Danon said, "he has chosen to fly just 12 hours to NY to avoid the possibility of peace". "He continues to flee from police and continues to pay terrorists and their families $347 million", he said in a statement sent from his office to reporters.

Abbas spoke as the Trump administration's two key Mideast negotiators who are working on a US peace proposal - the president's son-in-law Jared Kushner and special representative Jason Greenblatt - sat in the Security Council chamber listening.