Netanyahu: ‘PA reneged on central Oslo tenet’

Prime minister says Israel paid territorial price within framework of Oslo Accords in exchange for Palestinian commitment to direct negotiations.

PM Netanyahu at cabinet meeting 311 (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)
PM Netanyahu at cabinet meeting 311
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)
Palestinian pursuit of unilateral statehood goes against the 1993 Oslo Accords with Israel, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said Monday during closed-door discussions in his office.
“By boycotting negotiations and by going instead to the United Nations, they [the Palestinians] have reneged on a central tenet of Oslo,” Netanyahu said.
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He spoke in advance of a report that a UN Security Council sub-committee is expected to deliver Friday regarding a request by the Palestinians to be recognized as a fully fledged UN member.
Although the US is expected to veto the membership request, the Palestinians have continued to pursue membership. In addition, they have submitted similar requests to a number of UN related bodies and international organizations.
Last week, UNESCO recognized Palestine as its 195th member.
The Palestinians have refused, at the same time, to negotiate a final status solution with Israel.
Netanyahu said that within the framework of the Oslo Accords, Israel pulled out of large sections of the West Bank.
It paid a territorial price, because according to Oslo, the Palestinians had made a commitment to solve all outstanding issues and disputes through direct negotiations.
Israel, last week, took a number of punitive measures against the PA for its pursuit of unilateral statehood.
It temporarily suspended the transfer of tax funds to the PA, and it authorized the construction of 2,000 new homes in Jewish neighborhoods in eastern Jerusalem and West Bank settlements.
An Israeli official warned Monday that Israel could take further steps against the PA.
“If they renege on agreements they have to know that there is a price to be paid for the route they have chosen,” the official said.
“Only if they understand that there are consequences for such behavior is it likely that they would resume negotiations.”
The Inner Cabinet, a forum of eight ministers is likely to meet this week to weigh additional steps against the PA.