'Foreign Ministry mulls ousting Abbas over UN bid'

Channel 2 reports FM position paper considers Israeli responses to PA UN bid, including recognizing PA as a state in temporary borders.

By JPOST.COM STAFF, T. LAZAROFF
November 14, 2012 10:34
1 minute read.
The Jerusalem Post

Mahmoud Abbas UN 370. (photo credit: Scott Eells/Bloomberg)

 
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A Foreign Ministry position paper includes the ouster of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas as one possible tactic for dealing with the PA's bid to gain the status of a  non-member state at the UN, Channel 2 reported on Wednesday.

Abbas plans to push ahead with the Palestinian unilateral bid to ask the UN General Assembly to upgrade their status to that of a non-member state on November 29.

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According to the Channel 2 report, the Foreign Ministry recommended that Israel use information on Abbas obtained from Palestinian opposition websites of corruption allegations in order to smear his name and delegitimize him.

This was one of several recommendations the position paper presented. If the Palestinians abandon their UN bid, the position paper recommends that Israel reach an agreement with the PA to recognize it as a state in temporary borders during a transitional period, according to Channel 2.

On Wednesday morning, Environmental Protection Minister Gilad Erdan called for the government to annex all West Bank settlements.

In an interview with Israel Radio, Erdan called for the "immediate annexation of the Jewish population" in the West Bank in response to the Palestinian Authority's attempt to upgrade its status at the United Nations.

When asked if he was concerned that annexing the settlements would anger the United States, Erdan responded that as long as the PA was going against American wishes at the UN, Israel should not sit idly by without acting. "We don't always see eye-to-eye with the US," he said.

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European and Arab foreign ministers failed to jointly endorse the unilateral Palestinian statehood bid at the United Nations during a meeting in Cairo on Tuesday, calling instead for a negotiated two-state solution.

The Palestinians already have the majority necessary to pass their resolution in the General Assembly, which would be viewed as de facto recognition of statehood. But they want to secure the support of Europe, which remains divided on the subject.

Israel believes that at least six EU nations will stand with the Palestinians: Greece, Luxembourg, Malta, Spain, Belgium and Ireland. Separately China, which often supports the Palestinians at the UN, said Tuesday it would do so in this case as well.

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