Erekat urges Israel to halt settlements, pave way for talks

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January 2, 2012 18:11

 
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Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat Monday reiterated the Palestinian Authority demands for a full cessation of settlement construction and acceptance of the pre-1967 lines as the basis for a two-state solution, saying this would pave the way for the resumption of real and serious negotiations between the two sides.

Erekat's comments came on the eve of a planned meeting in Amman with Israeli envoy Yitzhak Molcho under the auspices of the Quartet members - the US, EU, UN and Russia.

Hailing King Abdullah of Jordan for hosting Tuesday's talks, Erekat told reporters in Ramallah that the meeting was designed to "commit" Israel to "international legitimacy, including the road map for peace, which calls for a freeze of construction in the settlements.

Erekat urged the Israeli government to take advantage  of the "positive opportunity" provided by the Jordanian monarch by halting activities in the settlements, accepting the two-state solution on the basis of the 1967 "borders" and releasing Palestinians held in Israeli prisons.

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