Hamas leaders in Gaza on Monday called on the Palestinian Authority to cancel a meeting with Israeli negotiators set to take place in Amman on Tuesday, China's official Xinhua news agency reported.
Sunday, the Jordanian Foreign Ministry announced that Israeli and
Palestinian negotiators will meet in Jordan for direct talks. This will
be the first public direct meeting between the sides in more than a
PA to take issue of settlement building to UNSC
'Secret peace talks nixed in wake of Quartet plan'
"We urge the PNA [Palestinian Authority] to cancel this meeting," Hamas spokesman in Gaza Sami Abu Zuhri told Xinhua.
spokesman also charged that the Quartet – made up of the US, EU, Russia
and the UN – is controlled by the United States and serves Israel's
interests, according to Xinhua.
The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) on Monday also
criticized the PA for holding direct talks with Israel, calling the
decision a "grave political mistake."
with Israel after the conflict has already been taken to bodies of the
United Nations "will encourage [the] occupation to go ahead with its
aggressiveness against the Palestinian people and their properties," the
PFLP said in a written statement reported by Palestinian news agency
The PFLP further alleged that the
direct meeting will encourage Arab, Islamic and international actors "to
evade their political, legal and moral responsibilities," the statement
One Israeli official said there
have been intensive behind-the-scenes talks over the last few days
between Israel, the Palestinians, Jordan and the Quartet to arrange the
Israel will be represented by Prime Minister Binyamin
Netanyahu’s envoy Yitzhak Molcho, and the Palestinians are expected to
be represented by PA negotiator Saeb Erekat.
While Defense Minister Ehud Barak and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton welcomed the talks
, the Palestinian Authority tempered expectations of the meeting, emphasizing that it did not signify a renewal of negotiations.
Abu Yossef, a senior figure in Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud
Abbas's umbrella PLO executive, described Tuesday's meeting as a forum
for the sides to "offer their positions on security and borders" as
requested by the Quartet in October.
"This is not a resumption of negotiations," Abu Yossef told Reuters in Ramallah, the seat of Abbas's administration.
said the meeting would be "part of ongoing Jordanian efforts to compel
Israel to comply with its international legal obligations ...
specifically its obligation to freeze all settlement construction".Khaled Abu Toameh and Herb Keinon contributed to this report