Palestine: Israel must choose

2010-08-23 20:01

kalahari.com

  • Breaking Ranks
    These accounts and interviews will surprise, sadden, shock, infuriate, but most of all, stimulate... Now R226.00
    buy now

Ramallah -Israel must choose between "settlements or peace", Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erakat said on Monday ahead of the September 2 restart of negotiations in Washington.

"The choice of the Israeli government is settlement or peace, they cannot have both," he said at a news conference in Ramallah, the political capital of the Israeli-occupied West Bank.

But he also said he believed agreement could be reached within one year.

"We think it is doable."

Both sides agreed to relaunch direct negotiations after a 20-month hiatus, even though the Palestinians had initially insisted they would not hold face-to-face talks unless the Israelis freeze settlement activity in the West Bank, including Jerusalem.

But Erakat made it clear on Monday that settlements remain a major issue, and that it now remains to be seen whether Israel will renew a 10-month moratorium on settlement construction it imposed in November last year.

"If Mr Netanyahu decides to renew settlement tenders come September 26, he will have decided to stop negotiations," he said.

Renew settlement tenders

Hawkish Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has indicated in the past the moratorium would conclude on that date.

And Vice Prime Minister Silvan Shalom reiterated on Monday that the moratorium was unlikely to be renewed.

"I don't think the freeze will be extended," he told public radio.

"The Palestinians cannot use this as a pretext to suspend negotiations," he warned.

The international community has pressed Israel to halt settlement activity while Netanyahu is under pressure at home to allow construction to resume.

The Palestinians have urged the US administration to demand guarantees from Israel on the issue, which has been a major hurdle in past peace efforts.

‘Up to Mr Netanyahu’

"We heard from the Americans that if we entered into direct negotiations we will be in a better position to have the moratorium extended, whether you call that an assurance or not," Erakat said.

"We hope Mr Netanyahu will choose reconciliation and not further confrontation and that's up to him," he said.

Both sides have traded accusations of holding up the peace process and each has said it is now up to the other to make it work.

"We are seeking to surprise the critics and the sceptics, but in order to do this we need a real partner on the Palestinian side. It is possible to succeed with a hand extended in peace, but only if someone on the other side likewise extends one," Netanyahu said on Sunday.

But Israeli media was sceptical, with some editorialists saying the new peace bid is not the first and won't be the last.

A string of interim agreements have been reached since the 1993 Oslo accords gave the Palestinians limited autonomy pending a "final-status" settlement on an independent state but they have failed to bear fruit.

A relaunch of negotiations amid much fanfare at Annapolis in Maryland in November 2007 had produced no visible results by the time the talks collapsed when Israel launched its devastating military 22-day offensive on the Gaza Strip just over a year later.

Read more on:    gaza strip  |  israel  |  middle east peace
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

 

Inside News24

 
 

Numsa prepares for life after Cosatu

Numsa has not only reiterated its call for President Jacob Zuma to resign but it is also preparing for life outside of Cosatu, a report states.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Thursday Sir Lowry's Pass - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Old Sir Lowrys Pass Road
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Bezweni Road
  • Thursday Cape Town - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Buitengracht Street
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Waterkant Street
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

BlackBerry Curve 3G 9300

Keep it together Text. Email. Social. With all the different ways to...

From R1399.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may be good at organising events but they do take their toll on your energy levels. You may need some time out today just to...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.