Palestinians - peace talks 'futile'

2013-09-04 22:21
A Palestinian supporter of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine holding a picture of Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah in Rafah Refugee Camp, southern Gaza Strip. (Adel Hana, AP)

A Palestinian supporter of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine holding a picture of Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah in Rafah Refugee Camp, southern Gaza Strip. (Adel Hana, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Ramallah - Middle East peace talks have so far proved "futile," a senior Palestinian official said on Wednesday, calling for greater US participation in talks.

"Until now there has been no progress," the Palestine Liberation Organisation's Yasser Abed Rabbo told Voice of Palestine radio, after several weeks of meetings between Israeli and Palestinian negotiators.

"Despite our decision to take part in talks, we're now seeing what we expected - that there is little hope for their progress, in fact that hope is non-existent and negotiations are futile," he said.

Abed Rabbo's comments echoed those of another senior official who said on Monday that after several rounds of US-brokered talks there had been "no breakthrough."

"Saving this political process not only [requires] promises of more US meetings with the sides, but also a clear US stance and pressure on Israel," Abed Rabbo warned.

Palestinian officials have complained about the lack of direct American involvement in the talks, which began last month after intense efforts by US Secretary of State John Kerry to bring both sides to the table.

But ahead of the first bilateral meetings in Jerusalem on 14 August, Israel announced plans to build more than 2 000 Jewish settler homes on Palestinian territory, in a move that angered Palestinian negotiators.

Media blackout

The last direct negotiations broke down in September 2010 weeks after they had started over the settlements issue.

"Israel hasn't committed to halting settlement building. We've seen the continuation of settlement building, which is destroying any chance for this political process," Abed Rabbo said.

"Either this occupation and all settlement building ceases, or the process is doomed to failure and collapse."

The talks have been held under a US-imposed media blackout, with no official announcements of when or where they are to take place.

"The number and dates of talks are not important. I'm not following exactly when the meetings have taken place, and this is not what we're interested in," Abed Rabbo said.

"The fundamental issue is that until now there are no indications these talks have achieved any progress whatsoever."

Read more on:    plo  |  john kerry  |  palestine  |  israel  |  middle east peace

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


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 network.


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.