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PA can deal with 'any' gov't seeking two states
By KHALED ABU TOAMEH
01/23/2013
Abu Rudaineh says Israel must choose "peace or stalemate," Hamas: Decline of Right reflects victory of Palestinian resistance.
 
ºThe Palestinian Authority said Wednesday that it would deal with any Israeli government that abides by UN resolutions calling for the establishment of a Palestinian state within the pre-1967 lines with east Jerusalem as its capital.

Reacting to the results of the election, PA spokesman Nabil Abu Rudaineh said that what the Palestinians care about is that a future Israeli government accept the two-state solution and halt settlement construction.

“This is the way for us to deal with the next Israeli government, which must choose between peace or the current stalemate, which will have a negative impact on everyone,” Abu Rudaineh said.

PA officials voiced pessimism regarding the prospects of reviving the peace process in wake of the Israeli election.

Hanan Ashrawi, a member of the PLO Executive Committee, said she did not expect the creation of a “peace coalition” in Israel.

“The chances for peace will not increase suddenly,” Ashrawi said. “I don’t expect the establishment of a peace coalition or camp in Israel.”

Chief PLO negotiator Saeb Erekat also said that the next government should recognize the two-state solution if it wants peace.

No matter who joins the next coalition, the new government should stop settlement construction and release all Palestinian prisoners, Erekat said.

Hanna Amireh, another PLO official, said the next coalition should abandon the policies of the outgoing government in order to achieve peace with the Palestinians.

The results of the vote reflected the “internal crisis in Israeli society, and the policy of occupation has no future,” he said.

Amireh warned that the presence of right-wing parties in the coalition would damage the policies of any government.

Hamas said the apparent reelection of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu did not bode well for the future.

Osama Hamdan, a senior Hamas official, said that regardless of who was in power in Israel, “all governments would continue with the occupation and the suppression of the Palestinians.”

Hamdan called on the PA leadership to reconsider its entire strategy toward the peace process with Israel in light of the results of the election.

Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said the decline in support for Likud and other rightwing parties in Israel “reflected the victory of the Palestinian resistance” during November’s Operation Pillar of Defense in the Gaza Strip.

Despite the changes in the Israeli political map, Israeli parties were in agreement over the continuation of the “aggression against Palestinians and denying them their rights,” he said.

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