Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

DEBATE

Nigeria's Battles

Read more

DEBATE

Nigeria's Battles (part 2)

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Over 70 killed in Nigeria bus station terror attack

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Pornagraphy without borders is key benefit of EU, says French MEP

Read more

FOCUS

China trade deal: is Taiwan's identity under threat?

Read more

ENCORE!

“Booty Looting” memory and mediums

Read more

WEB NEWS

Another Google Glass wearer attacked in San Francisco

Read more

LIFESTYLES

Sustainable cuisine

Read more

DEBATE

Eastern Ukraine: the escalation (part 2)

Read more

  • 'Shots fired' as Ukraine launches 'anti-terror operation'

    Read more

  • Hundreds of children rescued from "sinking" ferry off South Korean coast

    Read more

  • Syria “torture” photos stun, silence UN Security Council members

    Read more

  • More than 100 schoolgirls kidnapped in northeast Nigeria

    Read more

  • 'Miracle girl' healthy after seven-organ transplant in Paris

    Read more

  • Paris police memo calling for Roma eviction ‘rectified’

    Read more

  • Burgundy digs into France's bureaucratic 'mille-feuille'

    Read more

  • French court drops ‘hate speech’ case against Bob Dylan

    Read more

  • Algeria rights crackdown slammed ahead of election

    Read more

  • Iraq closes notorious Abu Ghraib jail over security fears

    Read more

  • Berlusconi sentenced to community service for tax fraud

    Read more

  • In ‘Tom at the Farm’, Xavier Dolan blends Hitchcock and homoeroticism

    Read more

  • US to mark one year since Boston Marathon bombing

    Read more

  • Deadly fire rips through Chile’s Valparaiso for third day running

    Read more

  • India's Supreme Court establishes third gender category

    Read more

  • Bluefin-21 'mini-sub' to redeploy for Malaysian jet

    Read more

  • Paris hotel that hosted Holocaust survivors shuts for renovation

    Read more

  • Guardian, Washington Post win Pulitzers for NSA revelations

    Read more

  • French police begin mass DNA test in hunt for school rapist

    Read more

  • Americas to see 'Blood Moon' total lunar eclipse

    Read more

  • France looks to lift ailing economy with business-friendly diplomacy

    Read more

middle east - do not use

Palestinians reject Netanyahu's offer of partial settlement freeze

©

Video by Catherine Nicholson

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2009-11-26

The Palestinian Authority slammed an Israeli offer to temporarily halt West Bank settlement building, saying the proposal was insubstantial and would not lead to a relaunch of peace negotiations.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s offer to “restrict” new settlement constructions for 10 months in the occupied West Bank has failed to bring the Palestinian back to the negotiating table.

All eyes are now on Washington to see whether the Israeli offer will prompt the US to use its diplomatic clout to break the long-lasting deadlock over the resuming of negotiations.

FRANCE 24’s correspondent in Jerusalem, Annette Young, says that US pressure is responsible for Israel’s proposal, recalling that Netanyahu had earlier tried to get some concessions from other Arab countries before committing to any partial freeze on settlement activity.

“This unconditional offer is a reflection of the sort of pressure Netanyahu is being under from Washington”, said Young.

The Obama administration has welcomed the Israeli offer, with special US Middle East envoy George Mitchell calling it “significant”.

“It falls short of a full settlement freeze, but it is more than any Israeli government has done before, and can help move toward agreement between the parties”, said Mitchell, implicitly acknowledging the 10-month ease would not be sufficient for Palestinians.

Defecting Washington’s pressure

While Netanyahu has presented the offer as proof of Israel’s genuine commitment to move peace efforts forward, however, Palestinians see it as a ploy by the Israelis for turning Washington’s attention back on them for their position.

“It’s up to Washington whether they can do anything to convince the Palestinians to rethink their stance of not going back to the negotiating table before a complete freeze on all settlement activities”, said FRANCE 24’s Annette Young.

The Palestinians have already dug in their heels, promptly rejecting the Israeli offer before it was even officially announced.

Top Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said there was nothing new in Netanyahu’s proposal, adding that Israel continue building the 3,000 units in the West Bank that had recently been approved.

Deadlock over Jerusalem

Palestinians also consider the offer as inflammatory because it doesn’t freeze settlement activity in the largely Arab east Jerusalem, which Israel claimed as its “eternal and indivisible” capital after annexing it in the aftermath of the 1967 war.

While Israel is ramping up the pressure on the Palestinians to resume negotiations, there is little real hope that Netanyahu’s 10-month settlement restriction will be the first step towards a complete moratorium.

“It’s going to fuel domectic support for Palestinians to take unilateral steps, such as heading to the UN security council and asking them to consider recognising an independent Palestinian state without a negotiated solution” concluded FRANCE 24’s Annette Young.

Date created : 2009-11-26

  • ISRAEL

    US and UN chief deplore new east Jerusalem settlement plan

    Read more

Comments

COMMENT(S)