(photo credit: JPost Staff)
The PLO’s Negotiations Support Unit is continuing to operate despite reports
that it has been dismantled, a spokeswoman for the unit said over the
“We are continuing to work and don’t know about any decision to
close down the unit,” she said.
The EU-funded unit has been providing PLO
negotiators with legal and technical advice. It has at least 25
Earlier this week, some employees of the NSU claimed that
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas had decided to disband the unit
following the leaking of thousands of documents to Al-Jazeera.
believes that members of the unit stole the documents, which detail the peace
talks between Israel and the Palestinians. The leaked documents have seriously
embarrassed the PA leadership, which has been accused of making far-reaching
concessions to Israel on the issues of Jerusalem and Palestinian
Despite the denial, a senior PA official said that the PLO
Executive Committee had recommended Abbas shut down the unit because of the
The official told The Jerusalem Post
that the Negotiations Support
Unit, established in 1999, would be dismantled by the end of the
He added that since the peace talks with Israel were frozen, there
was no longer any need for the unit.
The leaked documents have led to the
resignation of Saeb Erekat, the chief PLO negotiator. Erekat said he decided to
submit his resignation to Abbas because he was responsible for the theft of the
documents from his office.
However, the PA official told the Post
Abbas has yet to accept Erekat’s resignation.