Palestinian Authority President
Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday said that the Palestinians would not accept Abu Dis, a
town between Jerusalem and Ma'aleh Adumim that
is currently controlled by the PA, as the capital of their future state, but would insist
on receiving control over east Jerusalem.
In an interview with an Arab-language
Russian TV channel, Abbas explained that while he feels east and west must not be divided in practice, it was
important that it would be clear which part of the capital belongs to the Palestinians
and which part belongs to Israel.
The PA president said that the Israeli
demand to be recognized as a Jewish state appeared only in the 1947 partition
plan, hinting that
Israel would have to implement that plan in order to gain recognition as a Jewish
Abbas went on to explain that he
could not resume peace talks with Israel without agreeing on basic issues and
while Israel continued construction in east Jerusalem, because the peace
process would suffer a serious blow already after the first meeting.
“What if they say in this meeting
that they do not accept the ’67 borders and are not prepared to discuss [the
and the [return of Palestinian] refugees? What would we talk about?” Abbas was
quoted as telling the Russian TV channel. “If I engage in negotiations while construction
in goes on – they will say that is theirs,
since I was willing to resume talks while construction continued.”
has rejected two ideas about resuming the peace talks, consolidated by the PA, and , Abbas claimed. Those ideas
reportedly included a short building moratorium in the West Bank and east
Jerusalem, Israeli recognition of international decisions and the resumption
of peace talks from the point they were halted in December 2008, under then-prime
minister Ehud Olmert.