PA says no agreement with Israel without release of prisoners

Yasser Abed Rabbo blasts US for asking PA to make security concessions, criticizes Kerry for trying to “appease” Israel.

December 9, 2013 19:56
1 minute read.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and US Secreatry of State John Kerry in Jerusalem, Dec. 5, 2013

Kerry and Netanyahu shake hands at press conference 370. (photo credit: Noam Moskowitz/Pool)

The Palestinian Authority reiterated Monday that there would be no agreement with Israel without the release of Palestinian prisoners.

The PA’s announcement came in response to a report in Maariv according to which US Secretary of State John Kerry had threatened the Palestinians that the release of prisoners, slated for later this month, would be postponed.

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“We won’t accept any delay in the release of prisoners,” said Nabil Abu Rudaineh, spokesman for PA President Mahmoud Abbas. “Also, there will be no peace without Jerusalem.”

PLO Secretary-General Yasser Abed Rabbo criticized Kerry for trying to “appease” Israel.

Abed Rabbo told the Voice of Palestine radio station that Kerry was to blame for the current crisis in the peace talks with Israel.

“Apparently, Kerry wants to appease Israel by fulfilling its expansionist demands in the Jordan Valley under the pretext of security,” the PLO official charged. He also accused Kerry of backing Israel’s “expansionist ambitions of settlement activities in Jerusalem and the West Bank.”

Abed Rabbo claimed that Kerry was trying to “buy Israeli silence” over the recent nuclear deal between Iran and the six big powers. “Kerry is trying to achieve an imaginary success on the Israeli-Palestinian track at our expense,” he added.

Abed Rabbo also accused Kerry of endorsing a “disparaging” attitude in his dealings with the Palestinians. The US, he continued, should appease Israel at the expense of its own interests and not those of the Palestinians.

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