Israel’s prisoner release plan is a ‘blackmail plot’

Israel’s prisoner release plan is a ‘blackmail plot’
Sun Jul 21, 2013 09:17:02

While Israel is backing its biggest supporter's plan for the so-called peace talks in the Middle East, the Palestinian side has remained wary of what they are actually accepting to go with, while some totally reject the proposal since it does not meet even their most basic demands.

US secretary of State John Kerry made a dramatic announcement on Friday that the long-stalled negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians are going to be resumed.

The announcement came as Palestinian authority leaders refused to back Kerry’s proposals and said that they were preparing a formal reply that is expected to ask US to make several specific changes before Palestinians could agree to resume the talks.

Hamas, a powerful political party and a popular movement among Palestinians, totally rejected the talks with its spokesman saying that engaging in the process under the proposed condition contradicts Palestine’s national consensus.

On the other hand, in an unprecedented move, one day after Kerry’s announcement Israel said it is going to release a number of Palestinian prisoners as a 'goodwill gesture' and 'part of the new breakthrough by Kerry' according to Israeli authorities.

Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) movement dismissed Israel’s move as a cheap bribery plot so that Palestinians ignore what they actually should be done before any talks could kick off.

Davoud Shahab, a top PIJ member says, “All these prisoners have been detained for the sake of Palestine and they have suffered in Israeli jails for so long. They don’t care if they are released, especially when their release is actually a bribe to sell Palestine or ignore people’s demands”.

Speaking to al-Alam, Shahb said the condition are not right for Palestinians to engage in talks with the proposed dimensions because not only the proposals are ignorant of basic requirements to serve their rights, the shaky condition in the Arab countries who supported them up until now can add to the fact that they may never get to a desired position in talks to pursue their demands. 

“The Palestinian authority will be going to talks with no support … even when they had the support of some Arab countries they couldn’t make any achievements, now that they are in such a weak position, the outcome is obvious,” Shahab said.

He warned that as the Palestinian side agrees to the talks, Israelis will immediately start to benefit from the condition and implement all its illegal plans on Palestinian territories.

Kerry who was on his sixth visit to the region in the past few months, declined to tell reporters what the two sides had agreed to for starting the talks, saying that the "best way to give these negotiations a chance is to keep them private".

However Shahb said the new talks are going to be based on the Prawer-Begin Plan which will result in displacement of thousands of Palestinians.

On 24 June 2013, the Israeli Knesset approved the discriminatory Prawer-Begin Bill, for the mass expulsion of the Arab Bedouin community in the Naqab desert in the south of the occupied territories.

If fully implemented, the Prawer-Begin Plan will result in the destruction of 35 Arab Bedouin villages, the forced displacement of up to 70,000 Arab Bedouin citizens, and the dispossession of their historical lands in Naqab.


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