Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

AFRICA NEWS

Central African Republic: Brazzaville peace talks suspended

Read more

ENCORE!

High-tech acting king Andy Serkis on Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Read more

REPORTERS

Hong Kong in rebellion against the 'motherland'

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

Dalia Grybauskaite, President of the Republic of Lithuania

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

Gaza: children caught up in the conflict

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Was the UN chief’s speech in Tel Aviv really a 'shameful message'?

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

France concerned about anti-Semitism

Read more

WEB NEWS

Online movement demands peace in Gaza

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Apple aims to satisfy China's hunger for smartphones

Read more

  • UN human rights chief blasts Israel-Gaza ‘war crimes’

    Read more

  • Gaza protests: ‘France imported the Mideast conflict a long time ago’

    Read more

  • Bomb attacks kill ‘scores’ in north Nigeria

    Read more

  • Poland’s Rafal Majka wins 17th stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • Remains of Flight MH17 victims arrive in the Netherlands

    Read more

  • Two Ukrainian fighter jets shot down over rebel-held territory

    Read more

  • TransAsia Airways Taiwan crash leaves dozens dead

    Read more

  • Video: Fear, death and mourning in Gaza’s Khan Younis

    Read more

  • Young riders raise French hopes for Tour de France

    Read more

  • Defying UK, France to proceed with warships sale to Russia

    Read more

  • Kerry arrives in Israel to push for Gaza ceasefire

    Read more

  • US courts issue conflicting reports on Obamacare

    Read more

  • Video: Lebanon fears fallout from regional turmoil

    Read more

  • Widodo wins Indonesian presidential election

    Read more

Palestinians reject West Bank deal

Latest update : 2008-08-12

Citing its failure to address the thorny issue of Jerusalem's status, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas rejected a proposal by Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert that would see Israel return nearly 93 percent of the West Bank.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has rejected an Israeli peace proposal because it does not provide for a contiguous Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital, Abbas's office said on Tuesday.

 

Nabil Abu Rdainah, Abbas's spokesman, told the official WAFA news agency Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's plan showed a "lack of seriousness".

 

Olmert's proposal does not offer a solution to competing claims to the holy city of Jerusalem, and would only be implemented once Abbas reined in militants and re-established control of the Gaza Strip, which Hamas seized a year ago.

 

Under the proposal, Israel would return to the Palestinians some 92.7 percent of the occupied West Bank, plus all of the
Gaza Strip, according to Western and Palestinian officials briefed on the negotiations.

 

In exchange for West Bank land that Israel would keep, Olmert proposed a 5.3 percent land swap giving the Palestinians
a desert territory adjacent to the Gaza Strip.

 

Olmert's proposal first emerged several months ago and was published in detail on Tuesday by Israel's left-leaning Haaretz newspaper, prompting Abu Rdainah's response.

 

"The Israeli proposal is not acceptable," Abbas's spokesman said. "The Palestinian side will only accept a Palestinian state with territorial continuity, with holy Jerusalem as its capital, without settlements, and on the June 4, 1967 boundaries."

 

Abu Rdainah was referring to the borders that existed prior to the 1967 Middle East war in which Israel seized Arab East
Jerusalem, Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

 

He called the Israeli proposal a "waste of time".

 

Launched in November with the goal of reaching a statehood deal in 2008, the U.S.-sponsored talks have shown little outward sign of progress and have been marred from the start by violence and disputes over Israeli settlement building.

 

The chances of a peace deal faded further with Olmert's announcement last month that he would step down as prime
minister once his centrist Kadima party chooses a new leader in September.

 

Olmert spokesman Mark Regev said the prime minister was serious about continuing the peace talks.

 

But another Israeli official said Olmert was merely trying to establish his legacy. "There is going to be no agreement,
period," he said on condition of anonymity.

Date created : 2008-08-12

COMMENT(S)