Israeli Ex-Negotiator: No Agreement with Palestinians on Core Issues in Foreseeable Future

(Ha'aretz) Aluf Benn and Barak Ravid - "I do not believe that in the foreseeable future there is a possibility of an agreement with the Palestinians on all the issues, especially on the problematic core issues," Brig.-Gen. (res.) Udi Dekel, who headed the negotiations task force in the Olmert government, said Thursday. According to Dekel, the Palestinians refused to show any flexibility during the talks, preferring to remain stalemated rather than lower their aspirations. "The Palestinian approach was in principle the demand of 100 percent....They are not willing to discuss any further compromise," he said. "We tried to build scenarios, some of them were imaginary, about specific compromises, but we found the Palestinians taking an approach of 'all or nothing.'" He said that American involvement encumbered the negotiations. "So long as the two sides negotiated, there was some progress. The minute (Secretary of State) Rice's teams went into the details the two sides barricaded themselves behind their basic positions, and instead of the negotiations progressing, they regressed," Dekel said. "The Palestinians understood that the Americans were closer to their position on the issues of Jerusalem, borders and security, and opted to wait it out."

2010-01-25 08:34:19

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